Find California travel tips, stories, maps, videos and news for unusual tourist attractions and sights.
Simi Valley, California
In the 1980s, it was confusing to see your President in old movies co-starring with a chimp. Walk through Air Force One, crawl through a replica Berlin Wall, pay respects at the grave.
Statues surrounded by a fountain shaped like a ship's hull depict a man helping an elder woman, and a mother with a baby. 54 stone blocks feature the names of more than 6,000 dead boat people.
A fiberglass statue, normally one of a family of four -- but it's just Dad.
Baldwin Park, California
Exact replica of the 1948 pioneer drive-thru burger shack, with vintage equipment, speaker box, and neon signage.
Los Angeles, California
Tribute to the martial arts star stands over seven feet tall. Unveiled in June 2013, Bruce is posed as if starting an intense nunchuck battle.
Egyptian-themed buildings are part of a legally recognized church in California. Mystical landscape includes two temples.
San Diego, California
A Madonna-like figure seated and holding a lap full of shoes. She's said to maintain a vigil over the graves of the indigent dead in Mt. Hope Cemetery.
San Francisco, California
Landmark Tiki decor Polynesian restaurant in Fairmont hotel basement. The lagoon was once a swimming pool.
Historical marker at the site where a notorious bandit was killed by state rangers. They pickled his head and took it on a crime-does-not-pay tour.
Daly City, California
1936 water pumping facility: classical architecture with monster fish fountains, chiseled municipal wisdom. Tomb of the God of Cool Refreshment.
Water is gold in California, as this utility-funded educational center makes refreshingly clear. See how H2O is sucked from other regions to quench southern CA's boundless thirst.
2008 monument honors the divers and tenders who installed and maintained the canneries' underwater sardine pipes and pumps. Two divers died.
Civil War surgeon and embalmer Dr. Benjamin Lyford married into a family with huge tracts of land, and designed a utopian health community. All that remains is a stone tower.
San Francisco, California
Storefront exhibit of curiosities, taxidermy, and art for sale. The shop was location for a 2012-13 reality TV show called "Oddities San Francisco."
Top Rated Attractions
Mayor Istel built his town smack over the Center of the World, now site of a pyramid, church and world history in granite.
Fort Irwin, California
Fake Iraq and Afghan villages built for Army training employ actor-citizens and insurgents. Special attack tours.
The late outsider artist Leonard Knight painted huge, divinely inspired visions on a desert dirt ridge he called Salvation Mountain.
Concrete colossi built by Auburn dentist-sculptor Ken Fox.
Built by the late Claude Bell, who ran the Wheel Inn on I-10; currently owned by folks who don't buy the Theory of Evolution.
Cybernetic sculpture gallery and cabinet of curiosities for artists Clayton and Betty Bailey.
Culver City, California
A collection both cryptic and illuminating, dedicated to raising public appreciation of the Lower Jurassic.
El Cajon, California
Headquarters of the Unarians, firm believers that 33 city-ships of the galactic Federation would arrive on Earth in 2001 (they didn't).
The hairy biped, spotted between surfing beaches and Silicon Valley.
1960s vintage fiberglass Paul Bunyan statue spent career standing in front of Hayward businesses before finding a home at a local plastics fabrication business.
Grisly romp through funeral customs, celebrity murders, freak animals, and art of the condemned.
Giant statues of Paul Bunyan and Babe the Blue Ox guard the entrance of Trees of Mystery, where corkscrew trees and other arboreal mutants stand for your viewing pleasure.
La Puente, California
A doughnut shop sandwiched between two giant doughnuts is the very definition of the drive-thru attraction.
Los Angeles, California
Caren and Carl share their unmatched collection of naked ladies, unicorns, African-Americans in love. Black light room!
North Hollywood, California
Valhalla Memorial Park contains the Portal of the Folded Wing, a space shuttle replica, and the earthly remains of the Amazing Criswell.
San Francisco, California
Trippy tour of the Summer of Love using an old bus and 21st century tech.
San Jose, California
Picture 1968, Mexico City Olympics, The Star Spangled Banner. Black Power salute in silent protest. The two athletes are honored with a big statue.
Santa Cruz, California
Gravity misbehaves, but tour guides help visitors navigate the cockeyed hill.
People rent and sell bulldozers inside this building shaped like a bulldozer.
Yorba Linda, California
Dive into the murky pool of Nixonabilia: see his birth home, helicopter, political ascent, downfall, and a rock shaped like his head.
Dentist Ken Fox sculpted this large statue of a Chinese laborer.
Building shaped like a shoe where you can still get faulty footwear fixed.
Museum sits atop mountain of tailings, looks down into pit. Learn about borates, mules, and Ronald Reagan.
Borrego Springs, California
Memorial to gold prospector and inveterate liar. It's really there, out in the desert. Honest.
Electronics warehouse store attracts customers with a big flying saucer crashed into its facade, and more spaceships hanging above the merchandise.
Roadside America's blog, offering news, rants and ruminations on the state of California
Offbeat Landmarks and Oddities
Choice field reports and tips. Or check out: Complete list of California attractions.
- Adelanto: Miraculous Giant Healing Buddhist Statue [tips]
- Alameda: Carrier USS Hornet, Prints of Moon Men [tips]
- Antioch: Statue of the Cannery Lady [tips]
- Apple Valley: 24-Foot-Tall Trigger, Roy Rogers' Horse [tips]
- Aptos: Egg Machine with Robot Chickens [tips]
- Atascadero: Jolly Jim the Mystery Tree [tips]
- Atwater: Castle Air Museum [tips]
- Auburn: Ken Fox's Great Statues of Auburn
- Auburn: The Coolie - Ken Fox Statue
- Avalon: Statue of Old Ben, Hungry Sea Lion [tips]
- Bakersfield: Big Shoe Repair - Shoe-shaped Building
- Bakersfield: Muffler Man - The Indian Warrior [tips]
- Bakersfield: Merle Haggard's Boxcar Home, Black Gold Oil Exhibit [tips]
- Baldwin Park: Replica of the First In-N-Out Burger
- Ballarat: Ghost Town With Charles Manson Truck [tips]
- Big Bear Lake: Time Bandits Movie Pirate Ship - Sunk [tips]
- Bishop: Ghost Town and Freak Lamb [tips]
- Bodie: Bodie State Historic Park - Ghost Town [tips]
- Boonville: Where People Speak Boontling [tips]
- Boron: Borax Visitor Center
- Borrego Springs: Liar Peg Leg Smith Monument
- Borrego Springs: Statues of Dinosaurs and Monsters [tips]
- Buellton: Mendenhall's Museum of Gas Pumps and Petroliana [tips]
- Buena Park: Independence Hall Replica [tips]
- Burbank: Alien Invasion Themed Electronics Store
- Burlingame: Museum of Pez Memorabilia
- Burlingame: Little Man with the Hammer
- Cabazon: Cabazon Dinosaurs
- Calistoga: Old Faithful Geyser of California
- Calistoga: Medieval Castle Winery [tips]
- Cambria: Nitt Witt Ridge
- Campbell: Delta Queen Car Wash
- Cardiff-by-the-Sea: Cardiff Kook Surfer Statue [tips]
- Carlsbad: Craftsmanship Museum: Tiny Machines
- Carson: Muffler Man [tips]
- Cassel: Large Junk Art Sculptures [tips]
- Castroville: Giant Artichoke
- Chiriaco Summit: General Patton Memorial Museum
- Cholame: James Dean Memorial [tips]
- Coalinga: Prehistoric Snail, Earthquake, Town History
- Colma: Emperor Norton Grave [tips]
- Colma: Circus Showfolks of America Memorial
- Coloma: Towering Grave of California's Gold Discoverer
- Compton: Muffler Man [tips]
- Corona: Fender Guitar Factory Tour [tips]
- Costa Mesa: TBN Studio and Virtual Reality Jerusalem [tips]
- Cotati: Accordionist Statue [tips]
- Crockett: Bailey Art Museum - Robots of Clayton Bailey
- Culver City: Museum of Jurassic Technology
- Culver City: Holy Cross Cemetery - Graves of the Stars [tips]
- Davis: Toad Hollow - Tunnel for Toad Traffic
- Death Valley: Scotty's Castle [tips]
- Death Valley Junction: Amargosa Opera House [tips]
- Death Valley National Park: Uhehebe Crater: Volcano!
- Desert Hot Springs: Cabot's Old Indian Pueblo Museum
- Downey: World's Oldest Operating McDonald's [tips]
- El Cajon: Unarius Academy of Science
- El Cajon: Giant Mary and Toddler Jesus
- El Cerrito: Playland Not-At-The-Beach
- El Dorado Hills: Barber Jon's Curiosities and Oddities [tips]
- Encinitas: Surfing Madonna
- Escondido: Lawrence Welk Museum
- Escondido: Muffler Man - Joor Man
- Escondido: Queen Califia's Magical Circle Garden
- Fairfield: Jelly Belly Factory Tour
- Felicity: Official Center of the World
- Felton: Bigfoot Discovery Museum
- Felton: Redwood Cross-Section of Time
- Fish Camp: California Tunnel Tree [tips]
- Folsom: Folsom Prison Museum
- Forestville: Muffler Man - Bunyan [tips]
- Forestville: World's Smallest Church
- Fort Bragg: Tattoo Museum [tips]
- Fort Irwin: Painted Rocks - Military Boulders [tips]
- Fort Irwin: Hi Jolly Exhibit and Human Leg Bone
- Fort Irwin: In the Box Tour: Battles in Fake Iraq
- Fremont: Niles Essanay Silent Film Museum [tips]
- Fresno: Forestiere Underground Gardens [tips]
- Garberville: Famous One Log House
- Garden Grove: Christ Cathedral (formerly Crystal Cathedral) [tips]
- Garlock: Burro Bill's Tunnel To Nowhere [tips]
- Geyserville: Isis Oasis Temple and Retreat
- Geyserville: Coppola Winery Movie Museum
- Gilroy: Circus Trees at Gilroy Gardens
- Glendale: Big Gold Mall Statue of D-Day Dead
- Glendale: Museum of Neon Art [tips]
- Glendora: Rubel Pharm and Castle [tips]
- Guadalupe: DeMille's 10 Commandments Buried Here [tips]
- Guerneville: Pee Wee Golf
- Half Moon Bay: Pumpkin Farm, Labyrinth, Gladiator Battles [tips]
- Happy Camp: Surreal Bigfoot Sculpture [tips]
- Hat Creek: Muffler Man [tips]
- Hayward: Big Mike the Muffler Man
- Hayward: Muffler Man: Happy Halfwit Hollywood
- Hayward: Uniroyal Gal [tips]
- Hayward: Muffler Man Cowboy - Big Don
- Hayward: Muffler Man - Paul Bunyan No. 2
- Hayward: Doggie Diner Head [tips]
- Helendale: The Bottle Tree Ranch [tips]
- Hillsborough: Goofy Father Junipero Serra Statue
- Hollywood: Museum of Death
- Hollywood: Hollywood Forever Cemetery [tips]
- Hollywood: Johnny Ramone Grave [tips]
- Hollywood: Atlas Missile Grave Marker
- Hollywood: Famous Casting Couch [tips]
- Hollywood: Sleep in Room where Janis Joplin Died
- Hollywood: The Hollywood Sign [tips]
- Hopland: Solar Living Center [tips]
- Huntington Beach: International Surfing Museum: World's Largest Surfboard
- Huntington Beach: Statue Of Old Sarge - Dog Hero of World War II [tips]
- Inglewood: Big Doughnut, Randy's Donuts
- Irwindale: Tour the Sriracha Hot Sauce Factory
- Jacumba: Desert View Tower
- Joshua Tree: Noah Purifoy Outdoor Desert Art Museum [tips]
- Joshua Tree: Metal Dinosaurs [tips]
- Kettleman City: Bravo Land
- Klamath: Trees Of Mystery
- Klamath: Tour-Thru Tree
- La Jolla: House Teetering on Edge of Roof
- La Jolla: Giant Snake Mosaic Walkway
- La Jolla: Teddy Bear Made of Boulders [tips]
- La Puente: Big Doughnut, the Donut Hole
- Lancaster: The Musical Road [tips]
- Landers: The Integratron [tips]
- Lathrop: Crashed UFO at the Lathrop Tower Mart
- Lee Vining: Upside Down House [tips]
- Leggett: Chandelier Drive-Thru Tree
- Lemon Grove: World's Largest Lemon
- Lemoore: Giant Transformer Robot [tips]
- Lemoore: Creepy Farm People Dummies [tips]
- Livermore: Longest Continuously Burning Light Bulb
- Livermore: Muffler Man [tips]
- Lone Pine: Movie Road [tips]
- Lone Pine: Lone Pine Film History Museum [tips]
- Los Angeles: 50-Foot-Tall Woman with Visible Organs
- Los Angeles: Big Doughnut - Dale's Donuts
- Los Angeles: Simon Rodia - Watts Junk Towers [tips]
- Los Angeles: Fake Forest Cafeteria [tips]
- Los Angeles: Muffler Man - Tony [tips]
- Los Angeles: Bronson Caves - Batman's Bat Cave [tips]
- Los Angeles: Velveteria: Museum of Velvet Paintings
- Los Angeles: Muffler Man - Sergio [tips]
- Los Angeles: Chicken Boy - Muffler Man [tips]
- Los Angeles: LA Coroners Office Gift Shop [tips]
- Los Angeles: La Brea Tar Pits [tips]
- Los Angeles: Giant Italian Chair [tips]
- Los Angeles: Urban Light - 200 Lit Lampposts [tips]
- Los Angeles: Cosmos-Themed Encounter Lounge [tips]
- Los Angeles: The L. Ron Hubbard Life Exhibition [tips]
- Los Angeles: Petersen Auto Museum [tips]
- Los Angeles: Buried Face-Down Above Marilyn Monroe [tips]
- Los Angeles: Angels Flight - World's Shortest Railway
- Los Angeles: Forest Lawn Cemetery: Most Patriotic Place in LA
- Los Angeles: Space Shuttle Endeavor [tips]
- Los Angeles: LAPD Museum
- Los Angeles: Pierce Brothers Westwood Memorial Park [tips]
- Los Angeles: Big Bronze Bruce Lee
- Los Olivos: Michael Jackson's Neverland Ranch [tips]
- Malibu: Salsa Muffler Man
- Marysville: Museum of the Forgotten Warriors [tips]
- Mecca: International Banana Museum [tips]
- Mecca: Bearded Cowboy Muffler Man [tips]
- Mentone: Muffler Man - Paul Bunyan [tips]
- Merced: Muffler Man and Ag Museum Frontier Town
- Monterey: Steinbeck's Spirit of Monterey Wax Museum [tips]
- Mountain View: Computer History Museum [tips]
- Myers Flat: Shrine Drive-Thru Tree
- Newhall: Horse Drawn Hearse Under Glass [tips]
- Niland: Salvation Mountain
- Niland: Slab City [tips]
- Norco: Pumpkin Rock [tips]
- North Fork: Stand on the Exact Center of California [tips]
- North Hollywood: Television Hall of Fame
- North Hollywood: Portal of the Folded Wings, Space Shuttle Memorial
- North Hollywood: Columbia, Challenger, and Criswell in Valhalla
- Novato: Out-of-Control Christmas House
- Novato: The Space Station Museum
- Novato: Olompali: Miwoks, Chosen Family, Grateful Dead
- Oakland: Champions For Humanity: Mount Rushmore of California
- Ocotillo: Coyote's Flying Saucer Retrievals and Repairs
- Oroville: Bolt's Antique Tool Museum
- Pacific Grove: Dead Gray Whale Monument [tips]
- Pacifica: Sam's Castle [tips]
- Palm Springs: Robots Sculpture Garden [tips]
- Palmdale: Blackbird Park - Spy Plane Hometown [tips]
- Palo Alto: Body of Urban Myth [tips]
- Palo Alto: Naked Running Car Statue [tips]
- Palo Alto: Statue of Nikola Tesla [tips]
- Pasadena: Bunny Museum [tips]
- Pasadena: Giant Fork [tips]
- Pearsonville: Uniroyal Gal [tips]
- Piercy: World Famous Tree House
- Piercy: Confusion Hill [tips]
- Placerville: Hanged Dummy at Hangman's Tree [tips]
- Redwood City: Pulgas Water Temple
- Rialto: Wigwam Village Motel No. 7 [tips]
- Richmond: Rosie the Riveter Visitor Center
- Rio Vista: Foster's Bighorn - 300 Heads
- Riverside: Vietnam War Dog Memorial
- Riverside: Sanchez's Beer Bottle Chapel, Folk Art [tips]
- Riverside: Hand-Made Dinosaurs [tips]
- Sacramento: One-Log Kevin Costner
- San Anselmo: Indiana Jones and Yoda Statues
- San Bernardino: Original McDonald's Site, Museum [tips]
- San Carlos: Hiller Aviation Museum - Only Surviving SST [tips]
- San Diego: Air and Space Museum: Nazi Flying Wing, Apollo 9 Capsule [tips]
- San Diego: Unconditional Surrender Statue
- San Diego: Our Lady of Shoes
- San Diego: A National Salute to Bob Hope and the Military
- San Diego: Presidents Museum in a High School [tips]
- San Diego: Louie Mattar's Fabulous $75,000 Cadillac
- San Diego: The Scripps Turd [tips]
- San Francisco: Doggie Diner Heads
- San Francisco: Wave Organ
- San Francisco: Musee Mecanique
- San Francisco: Cupid's Span [tips]
- San Francisco: St. Francis Made of Melted Guns
- San Francisco: Tonga Room
- San Francisco: Paxton Gate - Taxidermied Mice
- San Francisco: The World's Crookedest Street
- San Francisco: Famous Lounging Sea Lions
- San Francisco: USS Pampanito Submarine Museum
- San Francisco: Albino Alligator
- San Francisco: Comic Rockstars Toilet Seat Museum [tips]
- San Francisco: Ripley's Believe It Or Not! Odditorium [tips]
- San Francisco: Magic Bus
- San Francisco: Cement Slides [tips]
- San Francisco: Real Crookedest Street in San Francisco
- San Francisco: Cathedral Made of Guns
- San Francisco: Ceramic Congregation: Internet Archive
- San Gabriel: Monster Park [tips]
- San Jose: Winchester Mystery House [tips]
- San Jose: Babe the Muffler Man
- San Jose: Rosicrucian Egyptian Museum [tips]
- San Jose: Olympic Black Power Statue
- San Luis Obispo: Bubble Gum Alley [tips]
- San Luis Obispo: Madonna Inn [tips]
- San Pedro: Battleship of Presidents: FDR's Tub
- San Pedro: SS Poseidon Model [tips]
- San Quentin: San Quentin Prison Gift Shop (and Museum) [tips]
- San Simeon: Hearst's Xanadu [tips]
- San Simeon: Watch the Elephant Seals [tips]
- Santa Clara: 32-Foot-Tall Steel Mary [tips]
- Santa Clarita: Star Trek Gorn Battle Rocks - Vasquez Rocks [tips]
- Santa Cruz: Santa Cruz Mystery Spot
- Santa Cruz: Blue Whale Skeleton [tips]
- Santa Fe Springs: Oxman's Surplus Museum
- Santa Monica: Mushroom Cloud Made of Chains
- Santa Rosa: Menacing Goblins [tips]
- Santee: Creation and Earth History Museum
- Sausalito: Nike Missile Site SF88L
- Sebastopol: Demented But Lovable Dog Statue [tips]
- Sebastopol: Amiot's Junk Art Characters [tips]
- Sequoia National Park: Tunnel Log: Drive Thru a Fallen Sequoia
- Sequoia National Park: General Grant - World's 3rd Largest Tree [tips]
- Simi Valley: Ronald Reagan Museum and Library
- Simi Valley: Grandma Prisbrey's Bottle Village
- Simi Valley: Skateboard Museum And Hall Of Fame [tips]
- South Lake Tahoe: Magic Carpet Mini Golf
- Stockton: King of the Windmills
- Stockton: Giant Buddha Statues [tips]
- Sunol: Bosco the Dog Mayor
- Sutter Creek: Muffler Man [tips]
- Sylmar: Nethercutt Collection: Rare Cars And Music Machines [tips]
- Taft: The Great Mouse Invasion - West Kern Oil Museum
- Taft: Giant Oil Worker Monument [tips]
- Temecula: Ronald Reagan Can-Do Statue [tips]
- Torrance: JFK Memorial Toilet Bowl
- Traver: Watch Cheese Made, Climb 7-Story Tree House [tips]
- Trona: Trona Pinnacles
- Truckee: Donner Party Monument - Cannibals!
- Tulare: Restaurant Inside an Airplane [tips]
- Tulelake: Lava Beds National Monument [tips]
- Turlock: Office Shaped Like Bulldozer
- Tustin: Two Giant Airship Hangars [tips]
- Twentynine Palms: Outdoor Collection of Vintage Neon Signs [tips]
- Ukiah: City of Ten Thousand Buddhas [tips]
- Valle Vista: Nightly Bat Swarm
- Vallecito: Moaning Cavern
- Van Nuys: Muffler Man - Kevin [tips]
- Venice: Venice Beach Freakshow [tips]
- Venice: Beach Bordello, Gargoyle-Encrusted
- Victorville: California Route 66 Museum - Hulaville Model [tips]
- Vina: Medieval Monastery [tips]
- Weed: Living Memorial Sculpture Garden [tips]
- Willits: Muffler Man: Cowboy Willy [tips]
- Willow Creek: Bigfoot Museum and Statue [tips]
- Woodland Hills: Old Trapper's Lodge Statues
- Yermo: Calico Ghost Town [tips]
- Yorba Linda: Richard Nixon Museum and Birthplace
- Yucca Valley: Desert Christ Park