11 Wacky Roadside Attractions for Your Next Road Trip

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It’s road trip season, and while you know that SoCal has plenty of epic vacation destinations that are just a drive away, you may not have heard about the must-see quirky stops to take along the way. These stops help make the journey to your final destination more fun, and your camera roll way more interesting! From downright wacky to pretty darn cool, these roadside attractions turn a pit-stop into a wild good time. Read on for 11 wacky roadside oddities that are definitely brake-worthy.


If you're heading out on the I-15 from SoCal towards the Las Vegas area, then a stop at EddieWorld is well worth it. You can fuel up and recharge with the lowest gas prices and 18 Tesla supercharging stations. There are three fast-casual restaurants serving up fare ranging from gourmet burgers and unique fries to salads and sushi. Even more, there’s a bag of candy with your name on it. 

Insider Tip: There are plenty of fresh, tasty vegan options available, and their bathrooms are notoriously clean!

36017 Calico Rd.
Yermo, CA 92398
Online: eddieworld.com

Cabazon Dinosaurs

Have a roaring good time when you stop to see the Cabazon dinosaurs in Palm Springs. Whether heading further out in the desert or just making it a quirky fun day trip, a Cabazon pit stop is tons of dinosaur fun. View over 50 dinosaurs, stroll through a cool museum and even climb inside the T. Rex. It's dino-tastic! Even more, for a sweet treat check-out the Wafflesaurus Truck open Fri.-Sun. from 11:30 a.m.-5 p.m. You’ll get to stretch your legs and the kids will love this adventure!

Museum Hours: Mon.-Fri., 9 a.m.-7:00 p.m.; Sat. & Sun., 9 a.m.-7:30 p.m.
Cost: $13/adult; $11/child; free for children under 3

50770 Seminole Dr.
Cabazon, CA 92230
Online: cabazondinosaurs.com

Sunny Jim Cave

Enter a bootlegger's tunnel through the historic Cave Store and follow it down through the sandstone cliffs and into the sea cave. The story goes that the creator of The Wizard of Oz inspired the cave's names when he noticed that the opening looks like the Sunny Jim cartoon character. Right now, 15-20 people are allowed into the cave at a time, and masks are only required for unvaccinated guests. Make your reservation online now!

Cost: $10/adult; $7/youth (ages 3-17)

Cave Store
1325 Coast Blvd.
La Jolla, CA 92037
Online: cavestore.com

Randy's Donuts

Hit a hole-in-one with your family the next time you're road-tripping through Los Angeles with a stop at Randy's Donuts. The famed big donut that graces their roof is a California icon featured in plenty of TV shows and movies, like Arrested Development, Californication, and Iron Man 2. Their flagship location in Inglewood has been there for nearly 60 years and is home to the original giant 32-foot donut. Check out their menu of classic donuts for the perfect road-trip snack. 

Drive-Thru Trees

If you find yourself driving to the California Redwoods, this is a must-do road trip adventure! There are three opportunities in the area where driving through a tree is actually encouraged! The drive-thru trees are giant redwoods with holes big enough for motorists to drive through. Shrine Tree in Myers Flat, Chandelier Tree in Leggett, and Klamath Tree in Klamath all offer the opportunity to take your car where it’s never been before (just remember to fold in your side-view mirrors).

13078 Avenue of the Giants
Myers Flat, CA

67402 Drive Thru Tree Rd
Leggett, CA

430 CA Route 169
Klamath, CA

Bubblegum Alley

Parents beware! Bubblegum Alley might strike the wrong nerve, particularly if you've found yourself acting as a dispenser for your kids chewed up gum one too many times. It is, in fact, an alley, about 70 feet long and 15 feet high, covered in thousands (maybe millions) of wads of chewed gum. The alley's history is debated, but it's been around since at least the early 1970s and is usually full of people taking selfies or contributing their own piece of gum. The bubblegum graffiti is located in the heart of downtown San Luis Obisbo and can be described as one of the city's most popular unofficial landmarks. So, feel free to extend your stop and pop into one of the many local shops or restaurants. There's even a classic sweet shop, SLO sweets, that sells, you guessed it, gumballs! 

733 Higuera St
San Luis Obispo, Ca 93401
Online: slocity.org/

Pirate House Newport Beach

When you’re driving down Marcus Street in Newport Beach, you really can’t miss this quirky gem on the corner of 35th and Marcus. Pirates of the Caribbean figures, a giant rooster and the Statue of Liberty are just a few of the things you’ll see. This is someone’s private residence, so you can’t go inside, but the owners are well aware that the home draws a lot of spectators.

35th St. & Marcus Ave.
Newport Beach, CA 92663

Roy's Motel and Cafe

Get your kicks on route 66! Roy’s Motel & Cafe is an institution of The Mother Road and one of the most photographed sites. Yоu mау rесоgnіzе іt from the numеrоuѕ mоvіеѕ, commercials, music videos and рhоtо shoots thаt hаvе featured thе Route 66 lаndmаrk. 

87520 National Trails Hwy
Amboy, CA 92304
Online: visitamboy.com

Elmers Bottle Tree Ranch

Go out on a limb and visit Elmer’s Bottle Tree Ranch located along Route 66. It's literally a forest of bottle trees in the California desert. Even more, the best part is the musical sound the bottles make on a windy day. Plan to visit other landmarks along Route 66 to make it a truly curious day trip with the crew.

Route 66 in Barstow
Online: thebottletreeranch.com

Ostrichland USA

Located in the town of Buellton, you’ll find Ostrichland a unique roadside stop that will engage everyone. Here you can visit with 100+ amazing ostriches and emus. Then, head on to downtown Solvang where this quirky Danish town has bakeries, restaurants and shops with many folks dressed in Danish costumes.

610 E. Highway 246
Solvang, CA 93463
Cost: $5/adult; $2/child; $1 per feed bowl
Online: ostrichlandusa.com

—Aimee Della Bitta and Nikki Walsh


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