X

Grandparents Create Real-Life Totoro Station for Their Grandchildren, It Becomes Viral Tourist Attraction

An agricultural field is one of the last places you would expect to find a tourist attraction for fans of Hayao Miyazaki’s anime, but this one farm in Japan’s Miyazaki Prefecture is actually home to a popular Totoro Bus Station.

If you’ve ever watched Miyazaki’s “My Neighbour Totoro” anime, you’re probably familiar with the simple yet iconic bust stop scene where Totoro appears next to the main character of the animated film as she waits for the bus in the rain. There are actually several real-life Totoro bus station across Asia, from the one in Saikai City, Nagasaki, to one in Taiwan’s Taichung area, but the most popular one these days seems to be the one created by an elderly couple in the middle of a field in Takaharu, as a present for their grandchildren.

Read More »

How the World’s Largest Signature Is Used by NASA to Analyze Satellite Imagery

In the late 1990’s, when a Texas farmer decided to clear up some new grazing land for his cattle by leaving up just enough trees to spell his name in giant letters, he probably never imagined that his signature would one day be used by NASA to evaluate the quality of their satellite cameras.

Jimmie Luecke was a young Texas state trooper who left the highway patrol in 1980 to try his luck in the oil business. He was lucky enough to do so during the chalk oil boom, became a millionaire, and invested most of his profits in land outside the town of Smithville. He started raising cattle on it, and by the late 1990’s his heard had gotten so large that he needed to clear up some more of his land of trees for grazing. Only he didn’t just settle for bulldozing all the trees, he decided to write his name in the process, thus creating the world’s largest signature.

Read More »

Horsetail Falls – The Yosemite Waterfall That Turns Into a Natural Firefall in February

A temporary waterfall in Yosemite National Park has become a popular tourist attraction in the mouth of February, because under the right conditions sunlight makes the water flowing down the rock face look like fire, hence its nickname, Yosemite Firefall.

Every year, from December to April, water from melting mountain snow flows toward the eastern edge of El Capitan, forming the temporary Horsetail Falls. The waterfall itself is quite a sight to behold, but it becomes truly breathtaking for a few days (7 -10) in February, when, under the right conditions, it turns into a firefall, with the water looking like flowing lava and swirling flames. The Yosemite Firefall is considered one of the most amazing spectacles one can behold in Yosemite National Park.

Read More »

Russia’s Big Stone River – A Little Known Natural Wonder

The most interesting sight of Taganai Park, in the southern Ural Mountains, Big Stone River consists of thousands of large stone boulders cutting a path through a thick forest of pine trees.

Stone rivers, also known as stone runs, can be found all over the world, from Bulgaria’s Vitosha Mountains, to the Falkland Islands, but none are as impressive-looking as the Big Stone River, in Russia’s Chelyabinsk Oblast region. Spanning 6 km long, this gigantic conglomeration of boulders starts off as several small “streams” with and average width of 20 meters that later join to form a large stone river with an average width of 200 meters (in some places up to 700 meters). Big Stone River is considered the most interesting sight of Taganai Park, and one of the most impressive in all of Russia.

Read More »

Small Italian Town Lights Up World’s Largest Christmas Tree

For nearly three decades, Gubbio, a small medieval town at the foot of Mount Ingino in Italy’s Umbria region, has held the Guinness Record for the world’s largest Christmas tree.

In 1981, the 750-meter Christmas tree spread over the slope of Mount Ingino was lit up for the first time. Every year since, on the 7th of December (the Eve of the Immaculate Conception), the over 700 giant lights that make up the tree are turned on, and they remain active throughout the holiday season, until the day of Epiphany, on 6th January. Created in honor of the local Patron Saint Ubaldo, the Christmas tree of Mount Ingino was recognized by the Guinness Book of Records as the ‘world’s largest Christmas Tree’ in the year 1991. Since then, no one has even come close to challenging its record.

Read More »

Just Room Enough Island – The World’s Smallest Inhabited Island

Just Room Enough Island, is an aptly-named private-owned island with literally just enough room for its owners’ house, a couple of trees and a miniature beach with a pair of bench chairs.

Part of the Thousand Islands archipelago on the border between the U.S. and Canada, Just Room Enough Island measures about 3,300 square feet (310 m2), which makes it the world’s smallest inhabited island. It was purchased by the Sizeland family in the 1950s, as a comfortable retreat, but they never expected it to become an internationally-recognized tourist attraction.

Read More »

Indonesian Restaurant Gives You a Fish Pedicure While You Eat

If the idea of having dozens of fish nibbling at your toes while you enjoy some traditional Indonesian cuisine sounds intriguing, you may want to check out this unique restaurant in Indonesia’s cultural capital of Yogyakarta.

Located far away from the city center, the Soto Cokro Kembang restaurant originally relied on a relaxing flower garden to attract patrons exhausted by the stress of urban life. However, when the owner’s father had the idea of turning the abandoned cow stalls nearby into a unique aquatic eating space, no one imagined that the quaint eatery would end up attracting people from all around the island nation. Owner Imam Nur says that the attention Soto Cokro Kembang is currently getting in the news and on social media is beyond what he ever imagined.

Read More »

The Japanese City Where Beautiful Koi Fish Swim in Drain Channels

Can you imagine an inhabited city where the water running through the the drain channels is so pure that beautiful koi fish can swim in it? Well, such a place exists on Japan’s Kyushu island. It’s called Shimabara, and it’s quite a sight to behold.

When the area around Shimabara was affected by the natural disaster known as the “1792 Unzen earthquake and tsunami” which killed 15,000 people, no one imagined that the dozens of fresh water springs that started gushing out would one day put the city on Japan’s travel map and inspire its now famous nickname – the “City of Water”. There are at least 60 known springs throughout Shimabara, making clean water one of the city’s most abundant resources. There is so much of it, in fact, that it flows through the drain channels along some streets. But that’s not even the craziest thing about this place; because the water is so pure, at one point authorities decided to put some koi carp in the channels, and Shimabara became the City of Swimming Carp.

Read More »

Japan’s Cheapest Hotel Will Charge You Just $1 Per Night if You Don’t Care About Privacy

Getting a hotel room for $1 a night can be considered a bargain pretty much anywhere in the world, and especially so in a country like Japan. But getting the huge discount comes with a catch, and it’s a big one.

Tourists visiting the Japanese city of Fukuoka on a budget can get a stellar deal at Business Ryokan Asahi, a welcoming inn located about a 15-minute walk from the city’s shopping and entertainment area. For just 130 yen (about $1.20) anyone can book a room there for a night, as long as they don’t mind giving up their privacy. That’s because in order to take advantage of this amazing offer, you have to agree to let the hotel live-stream your whole stay on its YouTube channel.

Read More »

This Famous Tree Log Has Been Floating Vertically for 120 Years And No One Knows Why

A floating tree stump known as the “Old Man of the Lake” has been bobbing in the blue water of Oregon’s Crater Lake for at least 120 years, baffling scientists with its upright orientation and allegedly even controlling the local weather.

The first account of the Old Man of the Lake dates back to 1896, when geologist and explorer Joseph Diller described a splintered and bleached white log floating vertically in Crater Lake. Five years later, Diller observed that the unusual log had moved 400 meters from the location it had originally been spotted at. Further research would show that the Old Man of the Lake is able to move more than four miles in just one day, despite lacking any apparent means of propulsion. How it’s able to do that is still a mystery, but it’s only one of many.

Read More »

This Whimsical Unicorn Cafe Is Probably the World’s Most Colorful Place

If you’re ever in Bangkok, Thailand, and you;re a fan of unicorns, ponies or just colors in general, there’s a place you simply must visit. It’s called “Unicorn Cafe” and, just like you’d expect, it’s full of plush unicorns, rainbows and lots of other colorful treats.

To say Unicorn Cafe is a colorful place would be an understatement. There’s colorful and there’s this place where even the food, including a multi-layered cake and spaghetti, come in all colors of the rainbow. There are plastic chandeliers and plush unicorns hanging from the ceilings, multi-colored couches, and tiny My Little Pony Toys decorating the tables. Did I mention you can put on a unicorn onesie to really get into a magical mood? It’s the kind of place you’d think only existed in someone’s acid trip, or in a pastel fantasy dream.

Read More »

World’s Scariest Haunted House Will Pay You $20,000 If You Can Make It Through a Tour

The owner of McKamey Manor, dubbed by many the world’s most terrifying haunted house, is promising anyone who can survive its scariest tour yet a prize of $20,000.

Many haunted houses claim to be the most terrifying, but there’s a general consensus among cheap thrill enthusiasts that  McKamey Manor is really the scariest of them all. And if its current reputation wasn’t enough, owner Russ McKamey is upping the ante by offering a prize of $20,000 to anyone brave enough to make it through a tour that can last up to 10 hours and takes participants to their physical and mental limits.

Read More »

Tokyo Bar Only Lets People In if They Come Alone

Nights out on the town are much better when shared with friends or loved ones, but while most bars and clubs around the world welcome groups, one particular Tokyo establishment only welcomes parties of one.

Hitori, a small bar in Tokyo’s Shinjuku neighborhood, has a very particular admission system – everyone is welcome as long as they come alone, no groups allowed. They make that abundantly clear from the front door, where a sign informs would-be patrons that this is a “bar limited to parties of one”. If you and your work buddies want to get a beer after a long day, or if you’re on a date with a special someone, this is most definitely not the place for you. But that doesn’t mean Hitori is a bar for loners or the socially awkward, quite the contrary…

Read More »

Ukraine Opens Radioactive Chernobyl Reactor Control Room to Tourists

In an effort to boost tourism to turn the Chernobyl disaster zone into a tourist attraction, the Ukrainian government recently decided to open a highly radioactive reactor control room to tourists.

The control room of Chernobyl’s reactor four is where Ukrainian engineers turned off the nuclear reactor’s cooling pumps during a safety test in April of 1986. It was this act that eventually led to a catastrophic explosion that killed 28 people in the immediate aftermath and left the surrounding area around the power plant contaminated with radioactive waste. It hardly sounds like the perfect tourist destination, but you’ll be surprised how many daredevils would pay serious cash for a chance to set foot in the room where the world’s most devastating nuclear catastrophe. And the Ukrainian government is ready to make their dream come true.

Read More »

Doll’s Head Trail – Probably the World’s Creepiest Hiking Trail

Just outside the city of Atlanta, in Georgia, lies one of the strangest, most disturbing hiking trails in the world – Doll’s Head Trail. Faithful to its name, this 1.5-mile course is lined with creepy doll heads that seem to be following you with their gaze as you walk by.

Long before it became home to the world’s creepiest hiking trail, Georgia’s Constitution Park was a huge 19th century brick laying site. But that shut down half a century ago, giving nature the chance to reclaim it, along with the deep clay pits which have since been flooded with rain water and created the network of ponds known as Constitution Lakes. And despite being located just a few miles from downtown Atlanta, this natural haven is home to several species of wild birds and even big game like deer. But the thing Constitution park is most famous for is its unique hiking trail, Doll’s Head Trail.

Read More »