Atlas Obscura is organizing trips! Join us on an adventure »
Today Only: 50% off Atlas Obscura books and calendars at Barnes & Noble »
The Perfect Gift for Travelers: Our #1 New York Times® best selling book »
  • member
    since
  • places
    I've been
  • places
    I want to go
  • foods
    I've tried
  • foods
    I want to try
  • places added
    to the atlas
  • places
    edited
How Humans Have Embraced Life, With Images of Death
story
skulls

How Humans Have Embraced Life, With Images of Death

Masterpieces of memento mori.
December 07, 2017
2017's Most Wondrous Photography Books
story
wishlist

2017's Most Wondrous Photography Books

Great gifts for the impossible-to-shop-for.
December 01, 2017
A Tour of the World’s Most Unrepentantly Modern Churches
story
modernism

A Tour of the World’s Most Unrepentantly Modern Churches

Worship at the altar of striking architecture.
November 28, 2017
When Gas Masks Were an Inescapable Part of Everyday Life
story
gas masks

When Gas Masks Were an Inescapable Part of Everyday Life

“It may be a little irksome at first, but you’ll soon get used to it.”
November 15, 2017
Candid Portraits Smuggled From Behind the Iron Curtain
story
soviet history

Candid Portraits Smuggled From Behind the Iron Curtain

One American photographer's inside look at the Soviet Union in the 1970s.
November 10, 2017
The World's Tiniest Wonders, Revealed Through Photomicrography
story
microscopes

The World's Tiniest Wonders, Revealed Through Photomicrography

Under a microscope, even a toothbrush can be a work of art.
November 07, 2017
100 Years of Rocketry and Research at NASA’s Langley Facility
story
wind tunnels

100 Years of Rocketry and Research at NASA’s Langley Facility

See pioneering mathematicians, giant wind tunnels powered by submarine engines, and hypersonic rocket models.
October 20, 2017
The Most Beautiful Space Images on Earth
story
astronauts

The Most Beautiful Space Images on Earth

Stargazing through the ages.
October 19, 2017
See the Most Luxurious Medieval Manuscripts in Existence
story
manuscripts

See the Most Luxurious Medieval Manuscripts in Existence

Feel free to judge these books by their covers.
October 12, 2017
The Grim Crime-Scene Dollhouses Made by the ‘Mother of Forensics’
story
forensics

The Grim Crime-Scene Dollhouses Made by the ‘Mother of Forensics’

They're perfectly to scale, and all based on real cases.
October 06, 2017
On Vacation in Soviet-Era Sanatoriums
story
soviet architecture

On Vacation in Soviet-Era Sanatoriums

The treatments are no longer mandatory, but they're still available.
October 05, 2017
How to Build an Unsettlingly Real Apocalyptic Landscape
story
apocalypse

How to Build an Unsettlingly Real Apocalyptic Landscape

One artist’s stark, brutalist, dystopian vision of the future.
October 03, 2017
In Belarus, the Ancient Tradition of Healing Whispers Slowly Disappears
story
health

In Belarus, the Ancient Tradition of Healing Whispers Slowly Disappears

A centuries-old practice with little place in the modern world.
September 28, 2017
The Unconventional Life of Mary Walker, the Only Woman to Have Received the U.S. Medal of Honor
story
19th century

The Unconventional Life of Mary Walker, the Only Woman to Have Received the U.S. Medal of Honor

Dress reformer, women's rights activist, and all-around pioneer.
September 27, 2017
When Old Lighthouses Find New Lives
story
lighthouses

When Old Lighthouses Find New Lives

A close-up look at what happens after the lamps go out.
September 20, 2017
In Search of Cemeteries Alive With Beauty, Art, and History
story
graveyards

In Search of Cemeteries Alive With Beauty, Art, and History

These resting places celebrate life.
September 15, 2017
Belgrade’s Modernist Masterpieces
story
modernism

Belgrade’s Modernist Masterpieces

A city's distinctive architectural heritage.
September 12, 2017
The Early Master Plans for National Parks Are Almost as Beautiful as the Parks Themselves
story
national monument

The Early Master Plans for National Parks Are Almost as Beautiful as the Parks Themselves

In the 1930s, park planning was pretty.
September 07, 2017
Japan’s Abandoned Hotels Are Being Reclaimed by Nature
story
japan

Japan’s Abandoned Hotels Are Being Reclaimed by Nature

Inside the once-busy lodgings that have become modern ruins.
September 06, 2017
The Women Who Rode Miles on Horseback to Deliver Library Books
story
horses

The Women Who Rode Miles on Horseback to Deliver Library Books

Librarians are amazing.
August 31, 2017
Life in Kyrgyzstan, 26 Years After the Collapse of the Soviet Union
story
asia

Life in Kyrgyzstan, 26 Years After the Collapse of the Soviet Union

Trying to see the future and reckon with the past in the former Soviet state.
August 30, 2017
The Forgotten History of the Neapolitan 'Kindergarten Ship'
story
italy

The Forgotten History of the Neapolitan 'Kindergarten Ship'

The educational experiment in Naples Harbor that turned street children into sailors and students.
August 25, 2017
For Centuries, Readers Annotated Books With Tiny Drawings of Hands
story
hands

For Centuries, Readers Annotated Books With Tiny Drawings of Hands

They were the medieval version of a highlighter.
August 23, 2017
Documenting America’s Long, Venerable Tradition of Roadside Dinosaurs
story
dinosaurs

Documenting America’s Long, Venerable Tradition of Roadside Dinosaurs

Welcome to Jurassic parking lot.
August 15, 2017