Four years ago, Don Aslett—janitorial impresario, vacuum collector, author of Clutter’s Last Stand—opened a museum dedicated to the concept of “clean.” Visitors can try out a pre-electric vacuum, marvel at toilets from around the world, and play Oliver Twist in the gritty, 18th century chimney mock-up. There’s even an interactive area, Kids’ Clean World, where little ones can sweep, vacuum, and wash windows.
At first glance, the redwood grove around the Mystery Spot looks perfectly normal. But tour the hillside and leaning cabin there, and you’ll find that nothing is as it seems. At the Mystery Spot, balls roll up hill. Short people appear tall, while tall folks shrink. Anyone can perform acrobatic feats with ease. Theories on the anomaly abound—it’s UFOs! Carbon dioxide! A magma vortex! The only thing we know for certain? No one really knows for sure.
A dark and stormy night. A mysterious crash in the countryside. Conflicting witness reports. Allegations of an FBI cover-up. It’s true: The 1947 “Roswell incident” has all the makings of a great sci-fi story. Weigh the evidence yourself at this homespun museum, dedicated to all things UFO. Examine dirt recovered from the crash site, check out a life-size flying saucer scene, and pick up your very own inflatable alien.
Doors that open onto walls. Staircases that lead to the ceiling. Windows that look into other rooms. Many things about this house defy logic, and the story only gets stranger. Sarah Winchester—widow of gun magnate William Wirt Winchester—began building this 160-room manse in 1882, and construction continued until she died 38 years later. It’s said she built the house to appease the spirits of people killed by Winchester rifles, and she included design anomalies to confuse the evil ones. Come explore, but don’t stray far from the group—you could get lost for hours.
Spiritual seekers swear by Sedona’s vortexes, powerful places where, supposedly, you can feel swirling energy emerge from the earth below. It’s said that the vortexes—at Boynton Canyon, Bell Rock, Cathedral Rock, and the airport—can help you feel confident, compassionate, balanced. Even if you’re not a believer, all that fire-red rock sure is pretty. Explore on your own, or take a guided vortex tour.
Curiouser and curiouser—that’s how you’ll feel as you explore this labyrinthine LA museum, a storehouse of the bizarre. In a nod to old-school private museums, the MJT showcases a dizzying array of objects, from portraits of Soviet space dogs to radiographs of flowers, from decaying dice to colorful micromosaics made from the scales of a butterfly wing. Is any of it real? Does that matter? Who knows. It is a delightful ride.
At Death Valley’s Race Track Playa, you’ll see a strange sight: nearly 200 stones—some barely larger than pebbles, some weighing over 600 pounds—have zigzagged and spiraled across the dry lake bed, leaving long snail trails behind. It’s no mirage. The stones have been moving (and confusing visitors) for decades. Recently, scientists solved the mystery. But you wouldn’t want us to spoil it, would you?
A massive red-and-white mukluk boot marks the entrance to Mukluk Land, a homespun theme park built of scrap, salvage, and a love of all things Alaska. Visitors can pan for gold, explore the park’s outhouse collection, and peer inside a log cabin crammed with hundreds of dolls. Other diversions here include a trampoline igloo, mini-golf, and an arcade.
It started innocently, when Steve Lubanski gave Candace Frazee a plush bunny one Valentine’s Day. The couple then pledged to give each other one bunny a day…for eternity. Today, Steve and Candace display their collection (30,000 items and counting!) in their Pasadena home. A bunny-shaped topiary welcomes visitors to the “hoppiest place in the world,” where bunny cookie jars share space with bunny paintings, bunny sculptures and, naturally, real live bunnies.
“Every man wants a castle,” Jim Bishop likes to say. The thing is, he actually built one. Piece by piece, all by himself. Bishop, an ironworker, spent 40 years digging a foundation, felling timber, hauling 1,000 tons of rocks, mixing mortar, and setting stone, to create his very own 160-foot tall castle (sans blueprints). His masterpiece—perched at 9,000 feet in the San Isabel Forest—features domes, turrets, spiral stairs, and even a fire-breathing dragon.