rlankenau's User Profile - Atlas Obscura
Unusual adventures and hidden discoveries. Explore our 2018 trips now »
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Temple and home exterior
Chicago, Illinois

Stan Mansion

Built to house a chapter of the Knights Templar, this grandiose building is a relic of Freemasonry in Chicago a century ago.
41.9251, -87.7081
Three levels of shopping stacked on top of one another, built above the world's largest underground aquarium, and centered around a full-blown indoor amusement park.
Bloomington, Minnesota

The Mall of America

Equal parts record-breaking temple to consumerism and bizarre fun park, it's more then you think it is...
44.8550, -93.2421
Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming

Lone Star Geyser

This Yellowstone geyser may not shoot as high as the nearby Old Faithful, but it erupts for considerably longer.
44.4182, -110.8128
Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming

Old Faithful Geyser

One of nature's most well-scheduled phenomenons resides in Wyoming's Yellowstone National Park.
44.4609, -110.8281
The crow's nest
Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming

The Crow's Nest at the Old Faithful Inn

An architect's childhood fantasy treehouse made real.
44.4597, -110.8303
Grand Prismatic Spring
Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming

Grand Prismatic Spring

The largest hot spring in the US is, as the name suggests, a stunning show of natural color.
44.5251, -110.8390
Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming

Morning Glory Pool

A beautiful geyser under enviromental threat.
44.4750, -110.8436
Mitchell, South Dakota

The Corn Palace

A fitting attraction for the corn capital of the world.
43.7146, -98.0254
Wall, South Dakota

Wall Drug

The granddaddy of all tourist traps, built on ice water and jackalopes.
43.9933, -102.2418
'The Thinker', often seen as a separate sculpture
Palo Alto, California

Gates of Hell Sculpture

Rodin's famous depiction of Dante's 'Inferno', amidst a sculpture garden of many of his other works.
37.4329, -122.1702
The central interior of Leadenhall Market
London, England

Leadenhall Market

This ornate Victorian marketplace was the setting for Diagon Alley and the Leaky Cauldron in the Harry Potter films.
51.5126, -0.0834
Sweep of the lakefront with perched dunes in distance
Glen Arbor Township, Michigan

Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore

This national park on the shore of Lake Michigan features remarkable dunes that inspired a Chippewa legend.
44.8825, -86.0411
Downtown Mackinac
Mackinac Island, Michigan

Mackinac Island

Island where motor vehicles are banned -- home to the only carless highway in the United States.
45.8681, -84.6289
May Natural History Museum
Colorado Springs, Colorado

May Natural History Museum

Hidden beyond a kitschy giant beetle is this remarkably sprawling collection of preserved insects.
38.7091, -104.8480
(Flickr/dbking)
U.S. Air Force Academy, Colorado

Cadet Chapel

Air Force Academy Chapel made of 100 identical tetrahedrons works to inspire those of all religions.
39.0080, -104.8903
Colorado Springs, Colorado

Garden of the Gods

Strange red rock formations that have been attributed to a higher power for hundreds of years.
38.8784, -104.8698
Outside the Stanley Hotel in Estes Park, Colorado.
Estes Park, Colorado

The Stanley Hotel

Paranormal experiences in room 217 led Stephen King to write "The Shining."
40.3830, -105.5190
Chicago, Illinois

Nuclear Energy

This bronze sculpture on a former squash court marks the secret origins of the Atomic Age.
41.7921, -87.6018
Gemini Giant
Wilmington, Illinois

Gemini Giant

This historic Illinois "Muffler Man" has been converted from axe-touting lumberjack to rocket-wielding space ace.
41.3106, -88.1386
Rock N Roll McDonald's and Museum
Chicago, Illinois

Rock N Roll McDonald's and Museum

The palatial McDonald's that inspired Wesley Willis.
41.8925, -87.6313
U-505
Chicago, Illinois

U-505

The unluckiest U-boat in the entire German fleet is now on display in a Chicago museum.
41.7906, -87.5831
Batavia, Illinois

Fabyan Windmill

Arguably the best example of an authentic Dutch windmill in the United States, rivaling its counterparts in the Netherlands.
41.8770, -88.3035
Niles, Illinois

Leaning Tower of Niles

Half-sized replica of the Leaning Tower of Pisa built to honor Galileo.
42.0125, -87.7841
Crown Fountain
Chicago, Illinois

Crown Fountain

The twin towers in this Chicago fountain use 50 foot tall video screens to spit on people.
41.8816, -87.6242