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Consider the Stone Crab

As I await my order of stone-crab chowder, I marvel at the massive claws on display at Keys Fisheries, a processing facility with a restaurant, tiki bar, and retail shop in the Florida Keys. “Select” claws start at $39.95 per pound. “Jumbo” go for $63.95. Locals bring back these massive crab claws from the Gulf of Mexico waters I can see from my dockside...

Reliquary of St. Margaret of Scotland in Fife, Scotland

In a room sequestered to the right of the main body of the church are some of the sacred remains of St. Margaret, Queen of Scotland. An arduous and lengthy campaign began in the middle of the 19th-century to retrieve what was left of her scattered remains. During the Scottish Protestant Reformation in 1560, Dunfermline Abbey was ransacked. Many Scottish...

Mátyás Fountain in Budapest, Hungary

Tucked away in the western forecourt of Buda Castle is the monumental Mátyás Fountain. The Neo-Baroque fountain shows a hunting party led by Matthias Corvinus, who was the King of Hungary. He is the bronze figure standing on top of the rocks wearing his hunting gear and holding a crossbow. A dead stag lies at his feet, which legend states was modeled...

Wadi al-Dawasir in Wadi ad-Dawasir, Saudi Arabia

Before exploring a place for which limited information is available, you may look at satellite images of the area. If you know how to interpret the patterns, shapes, and textures in these images, they can be treasure troves of information. A prime example of this is Saudi Arabia's Wadi al-Dawasir, where satellite images show a heavy concentration of...

This Bogotá Market Comes Alive Only at Night, Full of Ancient Plant Lore and Astonishing Biodiversity

The plaza announces itself as an aroma. It’s near midnight in the Colombian capital of Bogotá, a city of 8 million, tucked in the Andes at an elevation of 8,660 feet. Downtown is deserted as we approach the neighborhood known as Los Mártires. The narrow streets fill like rivers with a sweet and earthy current reminiscent of licorice and chamomile, wood...

U.S. Bicycling Hall of Fame in Davis, California

The US Bicycling Hall of Fame serves up all manner of bicycle spirits, both past, and present. The museum pays tribute to America's great cyclists. The first non-European to win the Tour de France and Northern California celebrity, Greg Lamond, is represented. Marshal "Major" Taylor, still one of the great sprint racers of all time more than 100 years...

Cold Spring Canyon Arch Bridge in Santa Barbara, California

Overlooking a canyon in the Santa Ynez Mountains, the Cold Spring Canyon Arch Bridge carries motorists up to 400 feet above the canyon floor. The bridge is on a stretch of State Route 154 and, in addition to its impressive height, also boasts the title of being California's largest steel arch bridge. Completed in 1964 and representing a massive feat...

Iron Library in Schlatt, Switzerland

The Iron Library is a true hidden gem. This special collection holds some of the world's oldest and rarest books about the history of iron metallurgy, science, and technology. It's located in the beautiful old Paradise Convent, the grounds of which are on the banks of the Upper Rhine. The library was founded in 1948 by Georg Fischer Ltd. and has one...

Podcast: Carhenge

Listen and subscribe on Stitcher, Apple Podcasts, Spotify, and all major podcast apps. In this episode of The Atlas Obscura Podcast, we visit an experimental automotive replica of Stonehenge, which has become a symbol of the town of Alliance, Nebraska. But residents haven’t always been fans. Our podcast is an audio guide to the world’s wondrous,...

The California Chefs Showcasing the Diversity of Native American Cuisine

Bison meatballs bathed in blueberry sauce. Roasted fiddlehead ferns. Acorn crêpes topped with maple cream. These are just a few examples of what Indigenous chefs are serving at restaurants across California. Three spots in particular are dedicated to championing Native foods and culture in the state. Their chefs cite the same formative experience: growing...

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