Where we travel is often influenced by what others share on social media. We see posts from unique, beautiful and thrilling locations around the world and we immediately want to know where it is, how we can get there and, of course, if dogs are welcome. These 10 slightly off-the-wall roadside attractions across the U.S. will give Fido a chance to stretch his legs during a road trip and provide some shareable posts on Instagram that will surely give his friends something to bark about!
Posted by Lauren Barker
Travel along Route 66 through the southern U.S. and you’re likely to come across a slew of unique and eye-catching attractions. The most well known, perhaps, is Cadillac Ranch in Amarillo, TX, located just off Interstate 40. Ten old Cadillacs are lined up, buried nose-first in a dirt pasture and covered with the artistic contributions of fellow travelers. Leashed dogs are welcome to join you for this unique photo op. Bring a can of spray paint, or find one left behind, and leave Fido’s name on the hood of a 1949 Club Sedan.
Cadillac Ranch is open from dawn to dusk and is free to visit.
Trees of Mystery and SkyTrail
Drive along Highway 101 in Northern California and you’ll instantly feel small. Redwood trees, the tallest living things on the planet, tower overhead and swallow you in their shadows. It’s only fitting that among these majestic giants lives a man large enough to chop one down! Paul Bunyan, the huge lumberjack of American folklore and Babe, his trusty blue ox, reside at Trees of Mystery and SkyTrail in Klamath, CA. Your pup can pose next to them for his photo and then join you on a ride through the treetops on the SkyTrail gondola. Dogs are even welcome in the buildings and gift shop.
Photos with Paul and Babe are free and can be snapped at any time. The SkyTrail is open daily from 8 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Admission to the SkyTrail and walking trails is $18 for adults, $14 for seniors 60 and over, $9 for children ages 6-12 and free for children 5 and under. Dogs are welcome for no additional fee.
When passing through South Dakota on Interstate 90, make a pit stop in the town of Wall and stock up on all your road trip essentials, souvenirs and gifts at Wall Drug. What started as a simple drug store in 1931 is today a shopping plaza and tourist attraction. Best of all, it’s the perfect opportunity for Fido to get his photo with an oversized Jackelope! Don't miss this Instagrammable opportunity, as you’re not likely to spot these mythical creatures in the wild. While you’re here, grab lunch at one of the outdoor picnic tables, shop for local art and Native American jewelry, and tour the Apothecary Shop and Pharmacy Museum. Just keep dogs out of the cafe and fudge shop. Wall Drug is also famously known for its free ice water, so make sure your pup hydrates.
Wall Drug is open daily from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. and is free to visit.
In the Southern California desert stands a 50-foot hill, brightly painted and made entirely of adobe clay, known as Salvation Mountain. This work of art, located off Highway 111 in the town of Niland, was created as a tribute to God and His gift to the world by local artist and visionary Leonard Knight. Knight’s message is portrayed on the most prominent piece of the mound and states simply, “God is Love.” Birds, waterfalls, flowers, trees and even the American flag are also depicted on this incredible roadside attraction. Dogs can join you on a climb to the top of the hill, explore each turn and crevice and notice something new at every angle. The colorful photo opportunities for your pooch are endless!
Salvation Mountain is open daily from dawn to dusk and is free to visit.
In the corner of Northwest Nebraska, off Highway 87 in the sandhills lies an ancient burial ground. Thirty-nine classic cars have met their fate at this roadside attraction built to resemble Stonehenge in Wiltshire, England. Carhenge in Alliance, NE actually matches the physical size and placement of the stones of the prehistoric monument. Originally built in 1987, Carhenge is now part of the larger Car Art Preserve, which features other unique works of art as well. Dogs are welcome to explore the grounds with you, of course stopping frequently to pose for photos.
Carhenge is open every day during daylight hours and is free to visit, but donations are appreciated.
World’s Largest Ball of Twine
It really does exist! Take Fido on a drive up Highway 29 to Cawker City, KS. Once you’re there, stroll through town, following the twine trails painted on the city sidewalks. These lead from the World’s Largest Ball of Twine to shops and other businesses throughout the city. The ball was started in 1953 by a local man who was simply saving unused twine, but it’s still growing today. Currently, it tips the scales at 10 tons and includes over eight million feet of twine. Each year the city holds a Twine-A-Thon for visitors and locals to add their own piece of twine to the historic monument. There’s even a parade to celebrate the town’s claim to fame. Unfortunately this ball doesn’t move, so there’ll be no games of fetch.
The World’s Largest Ball of Twine can be viewed at anytime and is free to visit.
Travel back to the Jurrasic period at Exit 106 on Interstate 10 in Cabazon, CA. The Cabazon Dinosaurs are one of California’s most iconic roadside attractions. More than 50 lifelike dinosaurs loom over the grounds, some with robotics. Your pooch can get his photo with Dinny the Apatosaurus or, if he’s really brave, Mr. Rex himself. Humans can climb all the way into the Tyrannosaur’s mouth. You can also visit the dinosaur gift shop, dig for fossils or pan for gems. Tours are self guided so take your time and enjoy this beloved tribute to a prehistoric era. Let Fido mark this one off his bucket list and brag to his Insta-friends!
Cabazon Dinosaurs is open daily from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. Admission is $13 for adults ages 13-54, $11 for kids ages 3-12, $10 for seniors and members of the military, and free for children two and under. Dogs are welcome free of charge.
World’s Only Corn Palace
The World’s Only Corn Palace can be found at the corner of Interstate 90 and Highway 37 in the South Dakota town of Mitchell. This multi-purpose arena attracts over 500,000 visitors annually because of its murals made entirely of corn. For more than a century, the Corn Palace has been an icon where locals and tourists alike celebrate the Midwest’s agricultural traditions. Each year it gets a makeover with a new theme and new designs made of naturally colored corn, grains and grasses. Dogs are always welcome to pose outside the Palace, but only small dogs are allowed to be carried inside and on tours.
The World’s Only Corn Palace is open year round and is free to visit. Public tours are given from Memorial Day through August and are free of charge.
World’s Largest Beagle
If you’re cruising down US-95 through Cottonwood, ID you’re likely to do a double-take. Yes, that’s a giant beagle and her pup standing proudly off in the distance. Now, this isn’t your typical roadside attraction. You and Fido are welcome to stay at this one-of-a-kind bed and breakfast, better known as the Dog Bark Park Inn B&B. Dog-themed furniture and decorations are placed throughout, and of course a delicious breakfast is included with your stay. You can also visit the Dog Bark Park’s visitor center and gift shop and check out the chainsaw canine carvings made by the innkeepers.
Rates for the Dog Bark Park Inn B&B start at $132 per night, and two pets of any size are welcome for an additional fee of $15 per pet, per night.
Seven Magic Mountains
As you approach the lights of Las Vegas on Interstate 15 in Nevada, you’ll spot seven brightly colored rock totems standing tall in the desert. They’re the Seven Magic Mountains, a public art installation by renowned Swiss artist Ugo Rondinone. The attraction was originally scheduled to dot the landscape for two years but its popularity has extended its stay until 2021. These DayGlo boulders won’t require any filters for Fido’s Instagram!
The exhibit is open daily from sunrise to sunset and is free to visit.
What’s your favorite dog-friendly roadside attraction? Leave a comment or tweet us @BringFido!
BringFido is committed to providing authentic dog-friendly content that our readers will love. We may at times receive compensation from our partners or use affiliate links to promote products and services featured on our blog.