7 Otherworldly Destinations Right Here in the USA

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For the past 8 years, I’ve lived in an RV and traveled all over the United States. I have visited many scenic and historic places, but some of the most memorable destinations are the places that felt as if they didn’t belong on Earth. Here are 7 otherworldly destinations in the United States.

Bryce Canyon National Park

View at Bryce Canyon National Park

On our first visit to Bryce Canyon National Park, we drove directly to the famous Sunset Point overlook to take in the views. After minutes of stunned silence, I turned to my husband and said, “I can’t believe we’re really still on planet Earth.”

Despite spending returning to the park multiple times and spending hours on its trails, I still feel like I’m on another planet when I’m in Bryce Canyon.

This Utah destination is famous for its hoodoos, tall, thin rock spires formed when the rock around them eroded away. A vast expanse of these unique geological formations gives the park its otherworldly feel.

Chiricahua National Monument

Scenic view at Chiricahua National Monument

The second place I ever saw hoodoos was at the Chiricahua National Monument in Arizona. While hoodoos were the main draw, this destination was different from Bryce in a few ways.

First, there were a lot less people given the monument’s remote location and designation as a National Monument rather than a National Park. Second, the hoodoos have a completely different look with the landscape featuring more greens than reds.

Florida’s Springs

Manatee in Florida spring.

Another type of otherworldly destination is the underwater world. The best place for American road trippers to get underwater is in the many springs in the state of Florida. The state’s hundreds of natural springs are know for their clear water and a constant temperature in the low 70s.

If you are lucky, you may also encounter manatees, gentle but definitely otherworldly looking creatures!

I didn’t pick one particularly location as there are so many beautiful springs in Florida, and we like to keep our favorite one a secret. Silver Springs and Rainbow Springs are both great options for your first visit.

Palo Duro Canyon State Park

Man and dog siting on edge of Palo Duro Canyon

Located in the Texas Panhandle, this huge canyon it has an average width of 6 miles, but reaches a width of 20 miles at places. Visitors can drive through, camp in and hike up the canyon.

We visited the canyon on a super dreary day, but our view was quickly brightened by the multi-colored walls of the canyon. This rainbow of rock definitely makes Palo Duro an otherworldly destination.

The canyon also has hoodoos and a field of boulders that looks as if they were thrown around by a giant. During our visit, we also had a chance encounter with a porcupine which looks a bit like an alien creature.

Petrified Forest National Park

Man hiking in Petrified Forest National Park

Many visitors to Petrified Forest National Park just take a short walk to see the park’s eponymous petrified wood. While this fossilized wood is definitely worth seeing, visitors should also check out the otherworldly badland hills of bluish bentonite clay.

These blue hills are easily accessed on the 1-mile long Blue Mesa trail. However, to really feel as though you have left Earth, I highly recommend the longer Red Basin-Clam Beds hike. This wild hike takes you by ancient clam beds, hoodoos and blue hills.

This route, which can be found on AllTrails is a backcountry hike without any marked trails. Therefore, it is only appropriate for experienced hikers and you should definitely download a map for offline navigation.

As an added bonus to the cool scenery, the trails in Petrified Forest are dog-friendly, so Ted could join us on all the adventures!

Valley of Fire State Park

Scenic view of red rock formations at Valley of Fire State Park.

You probably associate red rocks with Mars, but this spot in Nevada may be the reddest place on Earth. Plus, it is one of my all-time favorite camping destinations!

The park is small but it contains numerous jaw-dropping features including, ancient petroglyphs, a rock that looks like an elephant, a giant striped rock in the shape of a wave, slot canyons and many other amazing red and white sandstone formations.

Yellowstone National Park

Mammoth Hot Springs at Yellowstone National Park

Probably, the most well-known place on our list of otherworldly destinations is Yellowstone National Park. This huge park has tons to explore, including scenic waterfall hikes and drives through valleys filled with wildlife.

However, the park’s geothermal features are what make it feel out of this world. The insane colors of Grand Prismatic Spring, the bubbling mudpots and the chalky white terraces at Mammoth Hot Springs are sure to impress any human visitor.


Thanks for reading our guide to otherwordly travel destinations in the United States. The best way to see all of these cool places is to take an RV road trip.

Click here to see our favorite RV road trip routes, some of which cross through these out of the world locations.

Happy Travels!


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