Offbeat Attractions in All 50 States
Museums, historic sites, and other tourist traps are on most travelers' to-do lists, but sometimes the out-of-the-way or out-of-the-ordinary turns out to be more memorable. The United States, in all its breadth and diversity, offers countless offbeat attractions that are free or cheap to enjoy. With one fascinating sight in each state featured here, summer road trippers are sure to find something that will make them do a double take.
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Eternal flames burn around the world to commemorate notable people and events. In Chestnut Ridge Park in upstate New York, a natural eternal flame burns behind a waterfall, fueled by a stream of natural gas (although it does need to be relit occasionally). One reviewer who visited in winter described the experience on Roadtrippers and compares the setting to Narnia. The falls were frozen, he says, but the flame continued to burn.
The inspiration behind many a creepy movie, Centralia was once home to more than 2,000 people. Nearby coal mines caught fire in 1962 and continue to burn. Today Centralia is a ghost town with sulfurous steam spewing out of the ground. It's best to visit in the fall and winter, when low temperatures make it easier to see the steam.
Related: 10 Creepy Ghost Towns Across America