Here in Florida, we know how to bring the weird. Each of these attractions located throughout the Sunshine State deserve a visit, at the very least so you can take an awesome picture to show your friends.
We’re aware that these uncertain times are limiting many aspects of life as we all practice social and physical distancing. While we’re continuing to feature destinations that make our state wonderful, we don’t expect or encourage you to go check them out immediately. We believe that supporting local attractions is important now more than ever and we hope our articles inspire your future adventures! And on that note, please nominate your favorite local business that could use some love right now:
Key West Cemetery
This cemetery really brings humor to a dark subject. Visitors can spot several unique epitaphs such as "I Told You I Was Sick" and "Devoted Fan of Singer Julio Iglesias."
Skunk Ape Research Headquarters in Ochopee
This started as the office of Jack Shealy's Trail Lakes campground, until his brother, Dave, took up the search for an elusive Florida version of Bigfoot called the Skunk Ape. Fun exhibits and a petting zoo make this a must-see even for the non-believers.
Butterfly World in Coconut Creek, FL
The first in the country and the largest butterfly house in the world, this enchanted enclosure will delight the whole family with 80 different types of butterflies.
Airstream Ranch in Dover, FL
This strange yard art created by Frank Bates to celebrate Airstream's 75th birthday looks like eight Airstream trailers growing out of the ground. It's now the property of Tampa RV but still visible from the highway.
Solomon's Castle in Ona
Artist Howard Solomon wasn't great in school, but he knew he was meant to work with his hands. He built this entire aluminum covered castle by himself as a home for his family and his art, and it's become a classic Florida roadside attraction. Like you would expect a castle to be, they're old school, so bring cash not cards.
Angel's Diner in Palatka
Angel's claims to be the oldest diner in Florida. It's a converted railway car turned diner opened in 1932. Expect classic greasy spoon diner fare, and if it's too crowded you can always order from your car.
Jules' Undersea Lodge in Key Largo
It's supposedly the world's only underwater hotel, and guests must scuba dive 30 feet underwater to get to their rooms, each with a large scenic window.
Chicken Church in Madeira Beach
It's actually called the Church by the Sea, and apparently the resemblance is all accidental. The "eyes" are windows, and he bird's "beak" is made of roof tiles. The church may not be thrilled with the comparison, but I can't stop giggling every time I see it.
Spiritualist Community of Cassadaga, FL
Cassadage is called the unofficial psychic capital of the world because there are so many psychics who reside there. If you have any burning questions, a trip to Cassadaga could be the perfect way to find an answer.
Smallest Post Office in the US in Ochopee
This farm shed was turned into an emergency post office when the official one burned down in 1953, and the town just kept it that way. It's not even big enough for a bathroom, but you can buy novelty postcards from the post office and have them sent for you at the same time.
Daytona Beach Drive-In Christian Church
A converted drive-in theater where you can attend church without ever leaving your car. Services are piped in from the second story balcony just like movie sound used to be.
Monkey Jungle in Miami
Monkey Jungle is proud to be an exhibit where the people are caged and the monkeys are free. The walkways are covered with wire tunnels to keep the monkeys from attacking the patrons, like they did when it first opened in the '30s. But don't worry, it's now a safe and super fun place to visit.
Wolf's Museum of Mystery in St. Augustine
A private, relatively new museum of oddities in St. Augustine, but unlike Ripley's, everything from the stillborn elephant to a human brain encased in resin is for sale in this retail museum.
Goofy Golf in Panama City Beach
This golf course is perfect for anyone who loves kitschy vintage fun. Goofy Golf's creative owner built everything from giant monkeys to monsters and aliens, and they have remained mostly unchanged since their creation in 1959. It's lots of fun for the whole family.
Spook Hill in Lake Wales
Legend has it that a giant gator used to torment the Native Americans on this land, until a huge battle took it down. Since then, strange things have happened at Spook Hill, and if you park your car at the bottom of the hill, it will supposedly roll up the hill.
Hong Kong Willie's Junk Art Gallery in Tampa
Hong Kong Willie is not from Hong Kong, and his name is not Willie. But he is a very interesting living folk artist in Tampa who has devoted his life to reclaiming what most people would call trash and turning it into art. Stop by, take a tour and hear Willie's story, and you won't be sorry.
Coral Castle in Homestead, FL
Coral Castle is another castle in Florida built by a single man. In this case, a lovelorn Latvian, Edward Leedskalnin, sourced every stone himself, and built his own complex complete with stone chairs, tables, throne, a tub, and his own home, where he lived and gave tours until he died. This is a definite must-see if you're ever near the southern tip of Florida.
Of course, there are many more weird and awesome unique attractions in Florida, so please share your favorites with us!