These Are The 21 Most Bizarre Theme Parks You’ll Ever Find

Almost every kid’s dream is for their parents to take them to Disneyworld, right? With dozens of roller-coasters and hundreds of attractions, Disney is the most popular and legendary amusement park in the world. However, there are thousands of other theme parks scattered all over the world, and you won’t believe how strange some of them are. In fact, some are so bizarre that you won’t believe they’re real… and you’ll kind of feel like visiting them! Here’s a list of the 21 rarest theme parks in the world that will leave you in awe. Some of them don’t exist any longer, but we thought they were still worth mentioning! Watch out for #15, #5, and #1, they’re definitely the quirkiest!

Photo: Courtesy of Boredom Therapy

#21. Dogpatch, Arkansas

Let’s start this list with Dogpatch, a theme park located in the town of Marble Falls, Arkansas. Even its name is strange, don’t you think? This park was based on a fictional town that appears in the Li’l Abner comic strip. This town was home to a clan of “hillbillies” – which is the name given to poor white rural men – who lived in a secluded and impoverished village.

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The park remained open for nearly three decades, but the truth is that not many tourists came here. Nowadays, this site is just an abandoned site which attracts urban explorers, which is why you’ll find several old structures covered in graffitis!

#20. Paul Bunyan Land, Minnesota

Out of all the parks included in this list, this is probably the most random of all. As its name suggests, Paul Bunyan Land, located in Brainerd, Minnesota, is a park that revolves around the figure of Paul Bunyan, who is a giant lumberjack according to American folklore.

Photo: Courtesy of CBS

The first thing that you’ll see as soon as you enter the park is a giant statue of Paul Bunyan who will greet you with a strange low-pitched voice. The truth is that almost nobody knows about this site’s existence, although it is in fact quite popular among the local residents.

#19. Neverland, California

Probably, all of you have already heard about the Neverland Ranch, right? This was a private park created by Michael Jackson in Los Olivos, California. It seems that the famous pop singer wanted to keep in touch with his inner child, so he had a theme park built in his own backyard.

Photo: Courtesy of Boredom Therapy

This park featured a steam locomotive, a carousel, a Ferris wheel, a Pirate ship, a roller coaster, and bumper cars, among other attractions. It was also home to several exotic animals. After Jackson’s death, his children opened the ranch to the public in his honor.

#18. Holy Land Experience, Florida

Amusement parks and Christian faith aren’t two things that seem to match, right? Well, believe it or not, the city of Orlando, Florida, is home to a Christian-based non-profit theme park named Holy Land Experience. Can you guess what it’s about?

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This park attempts to recreate the architecture of ancient Jerusalem, so it features giant models of ancient houses as well as people who look like and are dressed like Jesus. The funniest part is at that the park offers real weekly church services and bible study groups. Who said you couldn’t sign up for some spiritual enlightenment on your holidays?

#17. AutoWorld, Michigan

During the 90s, once the Reagan-era economic recession ended, the city of Flint, Michigan, was in crisis. It used to depend on the automobile industry, but many factories had shut down during the past years. But you know what they say, you must always look at the glass half full! Can you guess what a group of factory owners and workers did?

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A group of guys had the crazy idea of reinventing some of the abandoned buildings into a tourist destination. But how? Well, they created Autoworld, a theme park related to the history of the auto industry. Unfortunately, people, especially youngsters, weren’t too much into cars, and this wild project lasted for only 6 months. What a pity!

#16. Silver Dollar City, Missouri

Why are all the parks located in Southern USA, one may wonder? Silver Dollar City, located in the town of Branson, Missouri, is a hillbilly-themed park. I bet you didn’t see that coming, right? But you must give these guys some credit, ’cause that is one super-cool entrance!

Photo: Courtesy of Boredom Therapy

This park is advertised as “good clean fun”, and can you guess which its major attractions are? Well, it features a steam train, a roller coaster, and it offers tours around the nearby Ozark cave system. It’s actually really worth a visit but bear in mind that it closes during January and February due to the icy-cold temperatures.

#15. Noah’s Ark Encounter, Kentucky

As you can see, there are several American theme parks on this list and all from different states! Noah’s Ark Encounter is found in the small town of Grant County, Kentucky, and it was recently opened in 2016. The park’s name and the photo below kind of suggest what the park is about, right?

Photo: Courtesy of Boredom Therapy

The park is made up of a sole building, which as you can see is a giant replica of Noah’s Ark. We must give these people one thing: they did a pretty good job with the building! This giant wooden ship features a petting zoo, a couple of souvenir shops, and a buffet restaurant. It’s weird, but it sounds appealing, doesn’t it? The surrounding fields and trees also add a weird charm to it!

#14. Heritage, South Carolina

We’ve already talked about the famous Holy Land Experience park, but as it turns out, that was not the first Christian-themed park to ever be created in America. Several years before, the Heritage Park in Fort Mill, South Carolina, became the first religious-themed park in the country.

Photo: Courtesy of Only In Your State

The park was created by the popular “televangelist” Jim Bakker, who was able to carry out this project thanks to the donations received from his followers. However,
the park closed in the mid-80s, after a tax exemption scandal broke out.

#13. Diggerland, New Jersey

Diggerland is a tractor-themed park located in West Berlin, New Jersey (I bet none of you even knew there was a city with that name, right?). This park is a paradise for construction lovers, as it includes real-size vehicles where guests can ride.

Photo: Courtesy of Boredom Therapy

This site also features tractor-shaped carnival rides. Apart from that, it hosts different sort of special events, including car smashes. You’re probably wondering what a car smash is. Well, it’s literally that: they smash heavy equipment on top of cars. I know, it makes no sense at all!

#12. Libertyland, Tennessee

The Libertyland theme park was created in 1976 by a group of city officials with the aim of boosting tourism in Memphis, Tennessee. It kind of sounds like an idea that Leslie Knope from Parks and Recreation would think of, right? However, the park became famous all over the world when Elvis Presley claimed that it was his favorite theme park and that it was home to the best rollercoaster in the world.

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From then onwards, it was always advertised as Elvis Presley’s park. However, it had no actual theme, and this is probably the reason why it closed down in 2005. But we must give these guys some credit since the project lasted nearly four decades!

#11. Opryland, Tennessee

No, it’s not a theme park about Oprah (though how cool would that be?). Opryland, located in Nashville, Tennessee, was inspired by The Grand Ole Opry, a famous Nashville country music stage concert. But what did this park consist of?

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To be honest, the park featured more musical performances than actual rides and attractions. As a matter of fact, people began to demand the owners to create rides and rollercoasters, but the park had no more space to expand itself. As a result, it ended up closing in no time. What a shame!

#10. Santa’s Village Azoosment Park, Illinois

Is this a zoo or a theme park? Well, as its name clearly states, it’s a bit of both! Santa’s Village Azoosment Park, also known as “The North Pole”, is a mini-theme park in East Dundee, Illinois. The park features a mini roller-coaster for kids and a reindeer petting zoo. Reindeer petting zoo… can you think of anything more specific than that?

Photo: Courtesy of Boredom Therapy

What’s more, The North Pole also featured a water park, which logically opened only during summer. But bad news! Just recently, the park attempted to build a giant roller coaster, but the plan proved to be a financial disaster, and the park was soon forced to close. What a pity, it really did sound amusing!

#9. Astroland, New York

This bizarre and futuristic theme park was created in Coney Island, New York, and it featured space-themed rides. Well, sure, that old and dirty white and blue rocket doesn’t look very futuristic now, but it sure was the talk of the town back then in 1962 when the park opened!

Photo: Courtesy of Boredom Therapy

But there was one tiny problem. Shortly after the park was opened, the first American reached the moon. And after that, the park was left a bit outdated. In 2008, it was modernized and refunded as the Luna Park Amusement Park.

#8. Land Of Oz, South Carolina

Land of Oz is a weird park (which of these parks isn’t?) in the small rural village of Beech Mountain, South Carolina. Obviously, the theme of this park is the Hollywood classic The Wizard of Oz, but during the winter months, the park is used as a ski resort.

Photo: Courtesy of Boredom Therapy

But I’ve got some sad news: the park went bankrupt nearly a decade ago. Nevertheless, the park’s facilities and statues still exist, and in fact, the owners still open the park for special events to gain some extra cash. So it’s never too late to visit your favorite fantasy characters in real life!

#7. Gulliver’s Kingdom, Japan

What the hell is that giant man supposed to be? And who on Earth came up with such a bizarre idea? Gulliver’s Kingdom is located in Kawaguchi-machi, Japan (I know, even the name of the city sounds like a joke!). And can you guess what the park’s theme is? Well, the name practically gives the answer away.

Photo: Courtesy of Boredom Therapy

This park is based on the book and film Gulliver’s Travels, which is about a travel writer and his adventures. And one of the park’s most iconic structures is this giant statue of Gulliver himself. Do you know what the weirdest part is? The park was closed down after a few years because it was built
on top of an old poison gas factory site.

#6. Old Chicago, Illinois

Old Chicago was an indoor amusement park that was built under an enclosed dome. I know what you’re thinking: why would anyone even build an indoor park? Well, this park featured two roller coasters, a Ferris wheel, and a couple of boutique stores.

Photo: Courtesy of Boredom Therapy

All of the park’s facilities were built so that they looked like Chicago during the early-20th century. The park was actually quite a hit, but several fires broke out in its premises, so it was forced to close down.

#5. Gatorland, Florida

Say hello to the first animal-themed park in this list. A few years ago, a group of executives had the crazy idea of opening an adventure park featuring alligators, and nothing else. The park’s most iconic element is an alligator wrestling show, where actual humans wrestle real-life alligators.

Photo: Courtesy of Boredom Therapy

Gatorland is located in Orlando, Florida, mid-way between Disneyworld and Universal. Coincidence? Not at all!
The executives’ idea was to promote and increase the traffic flow between both parks. And their plan was a success because Gatorland sells quite a lot of tickets.

#4. River County, Florida

Opened in Lake Buena Vista, Florida, River County was Disney’s first water park ever. However, this park proved to be quite controversial. Opened in 1976, it was designed to look like a swimming hole. But what was the problem?

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Well, even though a water park with a funny-looking shape and structure was actually not a bad idea, the plan was very poorly executed. The thing is, the park pulled water from the nearby Bay Lake, whose waters were not clean at all. Therefore, the water smelled bad, and its contamination resulted in the death of a child. After this incident, the park was naturally forced to close.

#3. Splendid China, Florida

You probably figured that the Splendid China park was located in China, right? Well, you’re wrong! This unusual China-themed park was opened in Four Corners, Florida, and it contained miniature replicas of different Chinese and Thai buildings.

Photo: Courtesy of Boredom Therapy

Unfortunately, the park didn’t last long and it closed down in 2003. In fact, there was a huge controversy involving the park, as many people suggested that it was used as communist propaganda and that it was a hot spot for espionage. To be honest, there were never any proofs and the accusations are very hard to believe, but one way or another, its executives were forced to close it.

#2. Crinkley Bottom, England

This strikingly unusual park was created by Noel Edmonds and was based on the fictional village of Crinkly Bottoms, the place where the Noel’s House Party TV program was based. It comes as no surprise that the park was a failure and ended up closing.

Photo: Courtesy of Boredom Therapy

But what type of attractions did Crinkley Bottom, also known as Blobbyland, really feature? Well, it was basically based on Mr. Blobby, the TV show’s main character. It featured a Blobby-themed house named Dunblobbin as well as a water river ride. The house’s design was actually quite cool, but it never attracted many tourists. Can you guess what the world’s most bizarre theme park is about? You won’t believe it!

#1. Haewoojae, South Korea

A theme park about toilets? Really? Without a doubt, South Korea‘s Haewoojae, also known as the Toilet Culture Exhibit Hall and Theme Park, deserved to be in the top of our list. This park is actually a combination between the planet’s first toilet-shaped house and a museum on the world’s restroom culture.

Photo: Courtesy of WEF News

This house was built in 2007 by businessman Sim Jae-duck (yeah, even his name is hilarious), and when he passed away in 2009, it was converted into a museum. It features several rather scatological sculptures and information about the world’s different types of toilets. It comes as no surprise that the park has super modern bathrooms. All in the sake of toilet hygiene!

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    Hernán Tamargo

    Teacher. Political Scientist. Writer. Feminist... and much more!

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