5 Unusual Places to Visit this Year

Traveling is a lot of fun, and 2022 might be the year you want to check out some out-of-the-way spots. You can always go to a popular vacation city like New York or Los Angeles, or you might visit a national park like Yellowstone or Yosemite. However, you might also want to go to a lesser-known city or location that’s more off the beaten track.

We will talk about some unusual American travel destinations right now. Maybe you’ve heard of some of these before, but if not, this might give you some ideas if you’re looking for a new place to spend a day this summer. And if you’re flying somewhere truly exotic, consider legal assistance to help secure the correct travel Visa’s, insurance, etc.

Pigeon Forge, TN

Pigeon Forge, TN, is an American gem that not enough people visit. It is a small mountain town in eastern Tennessee, and it’s Dollywood’s home. 

Country singer Dolly Parton is a treasure, and she has an Appalachian-themed park there that features a museum with all her costumes, a waterpark, and lots of other memorabilia. You can also find the Smoky Mountain Opry there, outlet malls, and many dinner theaters.

You will find some great shows in Pigeon Forge, TN, that attract out-of-towners every year. You might check out one of the Dolly Parton ones like her Stampede Dinner Show, or you may opt for a magic show or one with pirates. Others feature soul music or Elvis tributes.

You’ll probably enjoy this location if you like kitschy entertainment. You can also go for a walk in the nearby Smoky Mountains, home to all kinds of animals and flowers.

Glass Beach, CA

If you go to California, you can certainly visit popular cities like Los Angeles, San Francisco, or San Diego. Maybe you want a bit more of an unusual experience, though.

If so, go check out Glass Beach at Fort Bragg. The beach features thousands upon thousands of bottles that people threw away over a six-decade period, from 1907 to 1967. The glass washed ashore, but not before the ocean went to work on it.

The glass has all been polished and rounded into smooth pieces. It looks like outsider art, and in a sense, it is. This is a protected beach, so you can’t take any of the glass pieces with you, nor can you dump there anymore, either.

You can take lots of pictures, though, and there’s something awe-inspiring about standing there with the sun glinting off the many colorful glass chunks. The red pieces might be from old Coke bottles, while the blue ones may come from old car taillights. Who can say?

Marfa, TX

If you want to see more of Mother Nature at work, you can head to Texas, where the Marfa Lights beckon. The Marfa Lights received notice all the way back in the 19th century, when settlers saw distinct lights that appeared in the sky on certain evenings.

Locals and meteorologists alike have come to southeast Marfa to view the lights, which seem not to have any scientific explanation. They sometimes appear green but at other times red, blue, or white. They shimmer and wave back and forth, and they’re almost hypnotic.

There’s a distinct challenge if you’re going to try and see the lights. They appear in a desolate and uninhabited part of Texas. 

They also appear seemingly at random, year-round. You can drive along Highway 90 to the designated Marfa Lights Viewing Area 9, where you’re liable to meet other travelers from the US and international destinations who have come to catch a glimpse of them.

Maybe you’ll see them, or perhaps you won’t, since they don’t seem to follow any set pattern. They can appear in the rain or on clear nights. You never know if you’ll get lucky and spot them, but even if you don’t, you should still meet some oddity seekers like yourself.

Enchanted Highway, ND

The Enchanted Highway in North Dakota also gets its share of visitors every year. It is a 32-mile stretch that beckons to anyone who likes the weird or unusual.

You take Exit 72 from I-94. Then, you’ll start to see strange art pieces by the highway, including the World’s Largest Tin Family and the Grasshoppers in a Field. You’ll also notice the Deer Crossing, the Fisherman’s Dream scene, and others.

These are all scrap metal sculptures made by the locals many years ago. When you see them, you cannot help but admire the talent it took to create them.

You can also stop at nearby Regent, North Dakota, at the gift shop. There, you can actually buy miniature versions of all of the sculptures that you can take home. You can feature them on your dining room table or on a convenient bookshelf, and you’ll certainly have an interesting story to tell about them whenever somebody asks.

Jules’ Undersea Lodge, FL

If you head to the Sunshine State, you might want to stop by Jules’ Undersea Lodge, which was once the La Chalupa research laboratory. Outside the lodge’s windows, you will see all kinds of aquatic life floating by, looking in at you.

It’s in Key Largo, and you can find all kinds of other fun things to do around there, like fishing and snorkeling. However, you might want to stay in the lodge for a while just because of how decidedly odd it feels to experience. You can remain in the lodge for a few hours or an entire day.

You can watch tropical angelfish, snappers, parrotfish, and barracudas drifting by, and they’ll all look back at you with seemingly just as much interest in you as you have in them. You can eat lunch there if you like, or you can stay overnight if you have the money and don’t mind the fish watching you while you sleep.

America truly has some odd little pockets if you look for them. Seeing some of the more unusual ones is never a bad idea, and don’t forget to take lots of pictures to commemorate the adventure.

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED ON

in

Travel

Photo of author

Emma

It's a little lonely being one of the two female writers here, but I do my best! You'll find me covering everything from relationships to the newest gadget I'm excited about.

Leave a Comment