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Best of – 2010.12.06

Sir Richard Burton’s Tent Tomb - London, United Kingdom

Sir Richard Burton's Tent Tomb - London, England, UK - Atlas Obscura Blog

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An expedition-style tent in the quiet churchyard of St. Mary Magdalen’s catholic church marks the final resting place of Richard Francis Burton, a renowned explorer of the Victorian age, a celebrated linguist and writer, and a scandalous translator of naughty exotic books. Burton solidified his fame during his African expeditions for the Royal Geographic Society, pushing into the interior of the continent in search of the source of the Nile River. After his death in 1890, Burton’s wife had this uniquely-shaped mausoleum built with a stained glass window installed so visitors could look in and view the coffin inside.

Complete Atlas Obscura entry for Sir Richard Burton’s Tent Tomb 

 

Sidi Boulfdail - Gourzim, Morocco

Sidi Boulfdali - Gourzim Morocco - Atlas Obscura Blog Best of Entries

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Somewhere south of Gourizim is the tiny fishing port of the village of Sidi Boulfdail. While not on many maps, the post can be recognized by the large government gate visible from the road. It consists of a cluster of pastel fisherman’s shacks stacked upon each other and a modest boat launch, but it’s a nice place to stop and take in the smell of fish guts and brine. In the late afternoon, the atmosphere is neither hostile nor assertive, but it’s probably a good idea to poke around after most fisherman have retired for the day.

Complete Atlas Obscura entry on Sidi Boulfdail

 

Huguenot Street - New Paltz, New York

Huguenot Street - New Paltz, New York, USA - Altas Obscura Blog

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After being persecuted because of their religion, a dozen French Huguenots families relocated to the Hudson River in an effort to preserve their traditional values. The neighborhood they developed after purchasing 40,000 acres of land in 1677 remains the oldest continuously inhabited area in all of America. In 1964, their street was named a National Historic Landmark District and the Huguenot Patriotic, Historical and Monumental Society still owns 49 pieces of property and boasts thousands of members. Over the centuries, the original properties have been renovated and expanded, but they maintain their original architecture. Furnishings have also been preserved.

Complete Atlas Obscura entry for Huguenot Street in New Paltz, New York

 

Hole-in-the-Wall Outlaw Hideout - Kaycee, Wyoming, United States

Hole-in-the-Wall Outlaw Hideout - Kaycee Wyoming, USA - Altas Obscura Blog

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Between the 1860s and 1910, this area, in the remote Big Horn Mountains of Northern Wyoming, was a notorious stop on the outlaw trail during the romanticized lawlessness of the American West. The Hole-in-the-Wall was one of the most famous hideouts of such outlaws as Butch Cassidy’s Wild Bunch, Jesse James, and the Logan brothers. Even today, this is a remote, secluded, and hard to reach spot. At least a day’s journey by horseback from any semblance of civilization, the hole-in-the-wall’s remoteness added to its appeal to outlaws … but also to modern-day tourists looking for outstanding views of the big sky country for miles around.

Complete Atlas Obscura entry on Hole-in-the-Wall Outlaw Hideout 

 

Touro Synagogue - Newport, Rhode Island, United States

Touro Synagogue - Newport, Rhode Island, United States - Atlas Obscura Blog

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In a tiny colony called Rhode Island in the 17th century, Roger Williams and Anne Hutchinson offered a refuge for Jewish communities in Spain that were experiencing religious persecution. In 1658, after hearing of the refuge, fifteen families from Spain moved to the area and established a thriving community. In 1758, the congregation found a spiritual leader and, the next year, began building a synagogue. The Touro, designed by colonial architect Peter Harrison, remains the oldest standing synagogue in the United States, a lasting emblem of the religious freedoms and separation of church and state that the early Jewish colonists championed.

Complete Atlas Obscura entry on the Touro Synagogue in Newport

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