Atlas Obscura

The Tombstone House

A home built with marble tombstones from the graves of 2,200 Union soldiers buried in a Virginia cemetery.<p>The Tombstone House in Petersburg, Virginia …

Culture

For as Much as We Know About the World, There Are Still Dark Spots on the Map

A new atlas aims to surprise.<p>In 2017, in an era of satellites, big data, and digital maps that appear instantly on your phone, the world can feel …

Culture

What It's Like to Spend the Night at NYC's Premiere Cemetery

The towering, gothic archways of the historic Green-Wood cemetery stand like a portal between the living and dead. As crowds of New Yorkers make …

A Dispatch From the Other Side of the Veil

In Brooklyn’s Green-Wood Cemetery, Atlas Obscura’s “Into the Veil 2017” was a night of sublime contradictions.<p>Sensible shoes and cocktail attire, …

Culture

The World of Puppets Museum

A small marionette collection located within the dark cellars of an 11th-century Austrian castle.<p>In the Prince’s Cellars at the Hohensalzburg Castle, …

Culture

The Stranger Things Band Partied in a Cemetery Last Weekend

View Slideshow<p>Guests dressed in Victorian-period cocktail attire for Atlas Obscura’s “Into the Veil” event at Green-Wood Cemetery last weekend, …

Simulated Octopus Skin May Be the Future of Camouflage

Once again, cephalopods prove how amazing they are.<p>Octopuses and cuttlefish can make themselves look like a lump of sand or swaying seaweed, and …

Culture

Museum of the Mummies

Naturally preserved bodies are eerily staged throughout the crypt in varying poses.<p>Entering the dark, eerie crypt beneath the Church of St. Stephen …

Culture

Imagining What Houses Drawn by Kids Would Look Like in Real Life

A solar-powered pyramid, a house with legs, and titanium fortress.<p>Houses drawn by kids are fun, for sure: spiky triangular roofs, puffy clouds …

Culture

We Now Have Evidence That Alligators Like Chomping on Sharks

Brave biologists pumped 500 gator stomachs.<p>Alligators can be tricky animals to study. If you want to know what they eat, for instance, you either …

Culture

World's Largest Cashew Tree

You feel like you're in a forest, but you're actually walking amidst the branches and trunks of a single giant tree.<p>About 20 minutes south of Natal, …

Culture

Bayzhansay Ghost Town

An abandoned Soviet-era mining town in the mountains of South Kazakhstan.<p>These deserted stone buildings in the Karatau mountain range were once the …

Culture

Slobodište Memorial Park

Curious carved stones and bird-like wings are a symbol of Serbian resilience and freedom on the site of a WWII massacre.<p>Just outside the city of …

Culture

The Wire That Transforms Much of Manhattan Into One Big, Symbolic Home

The eruv, a nearly invisible holy boundary, must be intact every Friday.<p>Every Thursday and Friday morning, Rabbi Moshe Tauber leaves his home in …

Culture

'I'm An American' Radio Show Promoted Inclusion Before World War II

In 1940, on the eve of the United States' entrance into World War II, then-President Franklin D. Roosevelt's Immigration and Naturalization Service wanted to promote tolerance toward immigrants.<p>At that time, radio was the most important medium in the U.S. More than 80 percent of American households …

News (U.S.)

Best Books for Travelers 2017

It’s safe to say that books and I….we have a thing. Not only do I love reading while I’m traveling, I love reading to learn about a place before I go …

Books

Six spooky things to do on Friday the 13th in NYC

Welcome to the most feared date in history. If you plan on surviving the experience, you might as well lean into some of best events going down …

New York City

Villa of Tiberius

The Roman Emperor's lost summer home and grotto full of enormous sculptures sit along the Italian seashore.<p>Fascinating ruins and a huge grotto peer …

Culture

Ponta do Pargo Lighthouse

Portugal’s highest lighthouse has one of the most impressive focal planes in the world.<p>Perched at a dizzying viewpoint at the westernmost tip of the …

Culture

Cramond Ghost Island

Accessible only at low tide, the deserted island is dotted with World War II ruins.<p>Across a causeway, in the middle of the Firth of Forth, lies the …

Culture

Mountain Lions Are Way More Social Than We Thought

The big cats have been spotted sharing meals.<p>Scientists have long thought that mountain lions are majestic loners—only spending time with their …

Culture

Archive of the Afterlife

The museum calls itself the "National Museum of the Paranormal" and is full of eerie oddities.<p>The Archive of the Afterlife in Moundsville, West …

Culture

See the Most Luxurious Medieval Manuscripts in Existence

Feel free to judge these books by their covers.<p>There are treasures to be found inside many medieval manuscripts, from pointing hands to menageries of …

Culture

Listen to Stories of the Dead in Brooklyn's Green-Wood Cemetery This Weekend

Into the Veil is an explorative experience presented by <i>Atlas Obscura</i> and the historic Green-Wood Cemetery. Featuring dozens of intimate and grand …

Culture

Scientists Have Figured Out What Makes Wagyu Beef Smell So Delicious

One of the key molecules smells like egg whites.<p>Wagyu beef is considered by many to be the paragon of meat. The beef from four breeds of Japanese …

Culture

Londa Burial Caves

The unique funeral practices of the Toraja can be seen here with graves carved into caves and hung off cliffs.<p>The Toraja are an ethnic group …

Culture

Headwaters of the Mississippi River

At this Minnesota state park you can easily wade across the source of the mighty Mississippi.<p>The Mississippi River, one of the largest rivers in the …

Culture

America’s Top Fears in 2017

Pollution, politicians, and Pyongyang all made the list this year.<p>It’s almost Halloween, which means it’s time again for Chapman University’s Survey …

Culture

Il Bosco della Ragnaia

Stumbling upon this whimsical wooded garden is like stepping into an enchanted forest full of philosophical musings.<p>A visit to this peaceful Tuscan …

Culture

Redstone Rocket Replica

The 92-foot-tall structure is based on the aircraft that carried the first Americans into space.<p>A massive rocket towers above the trees in Concord, …

Culture