Thursday, August 13th, 2009
A guy once told me that the most interesting people at a party on the ones at the perimeter of the room, the socially awkward, the oddballs that just don’t fit in. So it goes with traditional travel guides, which tend to overlook the margins of travel. If you happened to be in the Czech Republic, for a example, the Frommer’s and Fodor’s might tell you about all the castles and chateaux, but would completely fail to inform you about the church built entirely out of bones. This is unacceptable.
Enter Atlas Obscura: A Compendium of the World’s Wonders, Curiousities, and Esoterica. Founded by Joshua Foer and Dylan Thuras, Atlas Obscura is a place for travelers to share information about all things bizarre that they have stumbled upon in their journeys. From a museum containing the genitals of every known mammal in Iceland to an 80-year-old house built entirely out of paper, the atlas is a user-generated guide to all the wonderfully unusual sights that most tourists never get to see. And seriously, if you ever make it to that Icelandic genital musuem, please pick up a t-shirt for me.