Vulcan was the famous architect of the gods in Greek mythology, and he’s downgraded from Mount Olympus to make a new home in Birmingham, Alabama. It’s a testament to the city’s metalworking and construction history.
The statue is the world’s largest iron-ore statue, standing fifty-six feet tall and weighing in at over eleven thousand pounds, more than ten and a half tons. It’s in the middle of a nice park in this bustling city, but unless you enjoy craning your neck up to look at a statue that’s been around for more than forty years, it isn’t much of a draw.
Bred for Boredom
Churchill Downs is the spot of the world-famous Kentucky Derby and has been around in bigger and better forms since 1875. And during the Kentucky Derby, the place is packed full of race fans, tourists, gamblers, and even some celebrities.
If you aren't a part of any of those groups, or if crowds give you the fits, this isn't the place for you. It's a pricey destination, too, with fees reaching above a hundred dollars per person. While Churchill Downs does have numerous events throughout the year, the Derby is the big one, and it's the kind of place you really have to want to be.
Bean There, Done That
The shiny, metallic Chicago Bean – its actual name is “Cloud Gate” – was made by Indian-born British artist Sir Anish Kapoor, and the sculpture now resides as the centerpiece of AT&T Plaza in Millennium Park in Chicago. It's free to visit, and certainly an attractive item.
But, that's all it really is. You can take a selfie with your warped reflection in the background – it will go great on your dating profile – but crowds are dense, especially during the day, and other than photographic evidence and a story that starts and ends with “I've been there,” this attraction has little to offer.
It's a Prison! Take the Kids!
Wyoming is the least-populated state in America, but even they have some things to see. The Frontier Prison sits on the National Register of Historic Places, and was in use for eighty years, from 1901 to 1981. If you visit, they even let you take a seat in the gas chamber.
If you're a fan of the macabre, this dark, gloomy structure might be right up your alley. It even has an interactive tour. How interactive, you ask? Our reporter hasn't come back yet. Even if you do visit, maybe the kids should stay at home.
West Virginia's Worst-Kept Secret
The Congressional Bunker was supposed to be a place for Congress to hide out during national emergencies (the code name was “Project Greek Island”), but word got out before too long, which sort of defeats the purpose. It's been turned into a luxury resort. You can not only stay there, but you can also take a tour.
Despite a beautiful exterior, it's still a bunker. For a tour price of thirty-four dollars, you'll get to visit cinder block walls, wooden bunk beds, and canned foods. Look at pictures online instead of wasting your time and money here.