What brought you here to Atlas Obscura?

Hey everybody!

I’m just wondering how you came to this community - is it because you like the content? Are you writers and contributors to the site in general?

I’ve been a big fan of AO for ages and attended an oyster event in Portland, but just started contributing my own content, which led to this community.

So tell me - who are you? And Hello!

(full time travel since 8/15)


I wish I could remember how I got here but I’ve been enjoying the posts and recommendations for at least a few years. Been a traveler probably longer than you’ve been alive and often like off-beat locales and quirky destinations.


I’m not certain how I stumbled onto the forum. Could it have been that there was mention of it in the email blast or something on the AO site? Years ago my girlfriend started sending me links to stories at AO and eventually got me an AO book for Christmas. I’ve been a regular reader since.


I suppose that depends on how old you think I am, right?

I once admired a co-workers shoes and he said: I’ve had these shoes longer than you’ve been alive! We did the math and sure enough, the shoes were “older” than me.

Also, I found that I had the same birthday as a co-worker. She asked the year and when I told her, she said: That’s the year I graduated from High School, you little sh!t!

It was hilarious.


I didn’t know there was an AO book! (googling)

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Unique places, odd sites, & urge a AO Tours Co to see said sites with cruise lines esp for inport tours in given areas, Needed. Love to reuse, repurpose places


I stumbled on Atlas Obscura I’m sure at least 3 years ago, I was really taken by their concept of documenting and profiling the hidden, tucked away places in the world, especially those in plain sight. When I tell people about it I like to use the apartment at the top of the Eiffel Tower as an example. I remember at first I binged out on as much as I could, added all my places visited, and was temporarily near the top of the list :stuck_out_tongue:

That was a while ago now. Then it would be fun to come across their book in the stores from time to time, including once when I was at the NY public library bookstore at the main branch there. I was also very interested in their business plan and how they’ve slowly added all kinds of services and products to make this a viable business. Very inspiring!

I drifted away for a little while but came across the Forum somehow in only January of this year and am really glad to be back into it. Looks like a fun and engaging community here.


I found Atlas Obscura in September of 2016, probably through my eclectic wanderings from online article to online article. :wind_chime:

Signed up for the newsletter, kept reading the articles, pre-ordered the book when I got the email, attended one of the booksigning sessions and joined the beta forums.

Still enjoying things, a few years later. :beers: :champagne: :cheese: :wine_glass: :cake:


I first found out about the Atlas when I had a facebook , I guess a couple of years ago, but not too sure. A friend of mine shared an article / entry on the Gardens of Bomarzo on their wall. I had never heard of it and I was intrigued and so became a regular reader of the site.

As time has gone on I see the value of the site and community more and more because we live in an age of jaded cynicism and rampant narcisism where a lot of people seem to no longer feel the thrill and enrichment of exploring the world around them. That’s a great shame IMO because the world is infinitely complex and life is short.

Took me a while to start posting info about the sites on the Atlas Obscura though , basically I started last year when I was living in Brazil. I guess my main objective was to try to raise the awareness of different sites / museums / natural areas etc. primarily in Latin America which sort of pass under the radar but that are intriguing and that need visitors / tourism.

I think at least on some level it might have been motivated by the museum fire that happened in Rio which was on the news while I was there and the whole thing sort of just disgusted me. I mean its ironic how the “upright” and “moral guardians” of Brazil’s “social liberal” party, who claim to value and protect the nations heritage and history, massively cut public funding to museums that ultimately resulted in the fire.


I didn’t know there was a museum fire in Rio. That makes me really sad. All that work lost.

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See, I didn’t know there was an apartment at the top of the Eiffel Tower!


yeah it’s the perfect example of something in a famous place that thousands of people walk right past, and barely notice. Even though there are plaques up there, and you can see in the window. Understandably most people are looking the other way at the amazing view. But I love those fun little bits of trivia.

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I came to AO quite by accident. I was looking for camera obscura articles and Google brought me here instead. I was hooked by the unique and sometimes mysterious subject matter included herein.


I can’t remember how or when I first became aware of Atlas Obscura. Regardless, I created a account properly a couple of years ago to fully engage with what is a beautiful thing that chimes with my interests - travel, history, art, culture, the obscure and idiosyncratic.

The feature articles and news stories hooked me in and the guidance towards amazing sites and experiences have ensured that I stay. I now travel with AO as a cyber-sidekick and eagerly take in any submitted places whenever I have chance. I aim to add more places to the Atlas and this forum has made the site even more stimulating and fun. I’m now a fully-fledged AOcolyte and talk this place up to anyone who’ll care to listen. In total, :heart: Atlas Obscura! Thank you for being here, there and everywhere!


A friend of mine suggested it to me a few years ago as being “right up your alley.”



I discovered the site about 2 months ago and got pretty obsessed. I’m a professional/semi-professional freelance writer so I wanted to write for the site but it looked like there wasn’t a (very easy) way to write for the site for money, so I backed off that route.

I used the site to plan a day trip, and mostly I really loved obsessively going through places I’d been and filling out my map. I loved looking at the map and seeing the pattern of where I’d been and reminiscing as well as searching in the cities I’d been in to see the places I’d been and missed.

But now that I’ve filled out the whole thing and searched all the places, there’s not as much to do. One of the main things I do is click on the newly added places. I like to see how the map is changing (like maybe some stuff will come into the midwest or the northeast or Australia) and maybe there’ll be some new place I went to. And many of the place entries are interesting.

I don’t really read the articles, partially out of bitterness that the articles editorial team hasn’t done a good job at even telling me why my pitches miss the mark and what they approve is erratic, and partially because it;s not as geography focused and other sites like history channel do a better job of the articles section.

Two things that might have kept this site longer:
-I wanted to see how many places others had been to in comparison but that’s not as easy a feature on this site but it seems like others don’t fill out the places out. I’ve been to 189 places and I’m nowhere near the most well-travelled person on my list of friends
-The discussion board isn’t as active as I’d like-


I commend you for trying to submit work here - the quality is really high for their paid articles, and I personally don’t feel ready to tackle such a thing…yet. So hats off to you for trying. I would encourage you to read the articles though, I find they help me with the tone and gives me ideas for things I could write and submit (to the places section that is).

I think the editorial team gets a ton of submissions and pitches and really can’t keep up and respond to every single submission.

I think there is a ranking of who has submitted the most in a place or who has been to the most places, but I don’t think there is much detail. :slight_smile: But I’m sure you already know that.


A few years ago I think. Articles and looking up interesting places for trips. Then about a year ago a friend suggested an event in LA I should check out. And now I feel fortunate to be a part of what is created here. Very thankful…


As early as last year (yes, I’m a newbie still) I stumbled upon this site while searching for abandoned places. More specifically amusement parks, found a link to that section of this site and became a regular visitor since then.

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I am a yoga teacher who started taking students on trips to India about ten years ago, trips with a yogic/spiritual bent, that hit the big sites (their flying half way round the world, they want to see the Taj Mahal!), but also get into the cracks. any emphasis on experiencing with all the senses, sight hearing as well as sight seeing.

Students have asked I arrange more trips to more places, so we have gone to Morocco for the World Sacred Music Festival, Oaxaca, Japan, Italy and more. Atlas Obscura helps me to find those gems off the beaten path. Love it!