With spring break behind us and summer ahead, Florida is on the brain as always. Miami Beach and Orlando are certainly attractive travel destinations—some of the most popular in the U.S., in fact. Who doesn’t like to be beside the water? Who doesn’t like theme parks? Today, however, we’re zooming in on the weird and wacky that Florida also happens to be known for. The strange. The cute. The confusing. If you’re on the hunt for a more original family road trip, look no further than below.
Cassadaga Psychic Town, Volusia County
From the outside, this is a simple country town. But inside, it’s the unofficial psychic capital of the world. Cassadaga is a humble, locally renowned spot for its tarot, crystal balls and palm readings. You name it, and Cassadaga’s probably spiritually got it. Folks come from far and wide to join in the local routines of the Cassadaga Spiritualist Camp, an officially recognized tax-exempt church.
Whether you’re in town for the week or just passing through, the destination makes for a great curiosity for newbies and a haven for spiritualist veterans. Visitors can schedule readings or healings at their convenience or, if they like, sign up for a class or workshop on a variety of topics. And once you’ve been and gone, you can carry on online. TheCircle offers an online phonebook of mediums available for app/call appointments. We can’t all be hiking back and forth to rural Florida for weekly appointments, after all.
And for those in your party not so open to the cosmic universe, the surrounding Volusia County has plenty more to offer, from The Great Florida Birding Trail to beautiful Daytona Beach.
Whimzeyland, Safety Harbor
Ever wondered what party life was like back in the ’60’s? Wonder no more. Whimzeyland is a private residence tucked away in Safety Harbor, Florida, and it’s a colorful site to behold indeed. Whimzeyland is the open-to-the-public home of two Florida artists who just so happen to have spent decades decorating to weird and wonderful degrees.
Also known as the Bowling Ball House on account of the 500-plus painted bowling balls littering the grounds, there’s nothing quite so memorable for miles around. This is a real weird Florida gem that’s definitely worth a visit.
Wonderworks, Orlando/Panama City
Just because it’s mainstream, doesn’t mean it can’t be weird. Wonderworks has two locations in Florida state: one in Orlando and another in Panama City. Trust us when we say you’ll know it when you see it—the building is upside down, after all. The premise is simple. It’s an amusement park for your inquisitive brain, especially great for family tours.
Wonderworks hosts interactive science exhibits the whole year round, from getting to experience a 5.3-scale earthquake to getting blown about by hurricane force winds. Pilot a fighter jet. Get cozy on a bed of nails. Climb a 3-story rope challenge or battle through a round of laser tag, then settle down for dinner and a show in the evening.
Add some of these attractions to your list of weird things you can say you did on your summer vacation in Florida. The Sunshine State has something for everybody, that’s for sure, whether it’s Disney or your first Cassadaga séance of the year. Make Florida your summer destination, and you’ll have few regrets.