When most visitors think of the Tar Heel State, they probably think of homemade Southern cooking, welcoming bungalow porches, and quiet yet growing towns. But North Carolina is also home to several unexpected oddities. From incredible tuba collections to halls of fame dedicated to taxidermy, you’ll find plenty of weird here. Here are 11 unusual attractions for visitors and locals alike.
At the edge of the High Country region of Western North Carolina lies the entrance to Linville Caverns, the state’s only show cavern, which means it’s safe to be explored by unexperienced visitors.
Vincent and Ethel Simonetti’s tuba collection began in 1910 and is continuing to expand today in the hopes that it will become more accessible to the public.
In the heart of uptown Charlotte is the racing fan’s mecca: The NASCAR Hall of Fame, which houses simulations of racetracks, a theater, and the Great Hall of interactive historic content.
The Marvin & Mary Johnson Gourd Museum, founded in the 1960s, contains gourd crafts from across the globe. Featured gourds vary in size from that of a robin’s egg to heights taller than most people.
Gravestones from over 300 years ago line Beaufort’s oldest cemetery and tell the history of the town’s formation during the 16th century.
Chris Drury’s creation “Cloud Chamber for the Trees and Sky,” is a unique addition to the North Carolina Museum of Art’s outdoor collection. It serves as a camera obscura mechanism, projecting the nature surrounding it into its structure.
Shell gas stations are commonplace today, but the Shell gas station at Sprague and Peachtree in Winston-Salem is the last remaining actual “shell” gas station, and has stood there since 1930.
Formerly known as the Bureau of Information, the “World’s Largest Chest of Drawers” stands 32 feet high and signifies High Point, North Carolina, as the “Furniture Capital of the World.”
In the Southern Appalachian Mountains are the remains of ancient stone structures. These structures are both natural and man-made, and reflect the Cherokee legend of the Moon-Eyed People with some of their faces carved in stone.
The public art exhibit of Acid Park got its name from urban legend. Vollis Simpson’s daughter died in a car crash while driving under the effects of LSD. He began to dream of what she saw moments before her death, and memorialized her death by building the park.
Henry L. Warren, a retired tobacco farmer, created a miniature town consisting of 27 structures and numerous walkways made of more than ten thousand arrowheads.