Tips, leads, stories from travelers, plus Roadsideamerica.com Team reports on quirky museums, ironic monuments, and must-see oddities! Trip planning caution: Some tips may not be verified. Over time, attractions change, move, burn down. What's a vacation without a little risk? Submit your own tip.
Oceanside, California - San Luis Rey Mission: Skull and Crossbones of Zorro
This old Spanish mission was used by Disney in the late 1950s as a filming location for the Zorro television series. A skull and crossbones at the cemetery entrance, added by Disney, still exists.[Joni, 12/07/2013]
- 4050 Mission Ave., Oceanside, CA
- Take Highway 76, turn right on Foussat Rd, Turn left onto Mission Ave and follow for roughly two miles. The mission will be on your left.
Lucin, Utah - Sun Tunnels
The Sun Tunnels are a "land art" installation created by artist Nancy Holt. The tunnels are on a patch of land in remote northwest Utah. The "tunnels" are actually large cast concrete culverts. On the summer and winter solstices, you can view the rising and setting sun perfectly framed through one of the tunnels. In addition, holes drilled in the sides of the tunnels are laid out in the shape of certain constellations. There are some other sculptures nearby, but I haven't been able to determine who created those. Trivia: Nancy Holt was married to Robert Smithson, who created Spiral Jetty, a land art installation on the north shore of the Great Salt Lake.[Candace S., 12/07/2013]
- Little Pigeon Rd, Lucin, UT
- In eastern Nevada, take I-80 exit 378 (Oasis). Drive north on Hwy 233 for 23 miles to Montello (last gas, water, food, lodgings) then 11 more miles to the Utah state line, where Hwy 233 becomes Hwy 30. Drive nine more miles on Hwy 30. You'll see a sign pointing right (south) for Lucin. There are two gravel roads on the right; take the one to the right. After five miles cross the railroad tracks, and continue about two miles to a dirt road heading left (east). Take this road; the tunnels will be visible in the distance. Drive two miles, then turn right and after about half a mile veer left to the parking area and the site. In dry conditions, using this route, a carefully-driven passenger car with normal clearance should be able to reach the site, but a higher-clearance vehicle would be better. Use caution: this is a remote area with sketchy or no cell service, and this site is rarely visited except on the solstice days!
Eureka, California - Shipwreck - Attraction Ruins
The remnants of Shipwreck, which was located in Fields Landing south of Eureka. It is now blocked from pubic access and is quite a walk to get to. I had the opportunity to visit last week to see what was left of my childhood memories of my Grandpa taking me to feed the seals.[Ellie B, 12/07/2013]
- Fields Landing CA - some conflicting directions: south of Bayshore Mall, and directly west of Ft. Humboldt. West of the Humboldt Hill exit and Highway 101, approx 100 ft, on the left, behind a locked gate. Part of site now occupied by Lithia Dodge.
- Private property - no trespassing.
Richmond, Virginia - Giant Lurking Indian
I was in Richmond recently and finally saw "Connecticut," the former Richmond Braves Indian statue, at his new digs overlooking the James River. After I got back, I was doing some online research on BEST Products and came across a reference to a statue of an Indian that had once been on top of a BEST store in Bethesda, Maryland. I thought, "Nah. Couldn't be the same statue." But guess what? It IS the same.
According to the Virginia Historical Society, "Connecticut" was originally going to be on the roof of a liquor store on Connecticut Ave. in Washington, DC. When those plans fell through (due to bickering in the family that owned the liquor store's building), the statue's sculptor, Paul DiPasquale, approached BEST about the statue, and it wound up on the roof of BEST's Bethesda store in 1983.
After eight months the permit that allowed him to be installed wasn't renewed, and he was put in storage while BEST tried to find a new home for him. By 1985 he was at the baseball stadium in Richmond, where he stayed until 2010 when the Braves left town and were replaced by the Flying Squirrels.[Dean Jeffrey, 12/07/2013]
Paul DiPasquale also sculpted the Giant Statue of Neptune in Virginia Beach.
- E. Cary St., Richmond, VA
- On the north side of the James River, southeast side of the city. I-95 exits 74B or 74C, then drive east to 25th St. Turn right and drive south, then turn left onto E. Cary St. The Lucky Strike building with the Indian on top will be on the left, at the corner of E. Cary and Pear Sts.
- RA Rates:
- Worth a Detour
- Puyallup, Washington - Dinosaur McDonald's
I live right by this McDonald's. It was remodeled and doesn't have this theme any more. Only the tall metal dino skeleton out by the drive-thru remains.[erin, 12/07/2013]
- Heading South out of Puyallup on Meridian, at 176th South/Sunrise Blvd. E.
- Dec. 2013: Reported De-Themed