Think building gazing is boring? No way! From huge books to giant baskets and barrels, these novelty buildings around the world warrant are some of the strangest yet coolest that we would love to see:
Kansas City Public Library, USA
There’s no better way to get into books than, well, literally stepping into one. This groovy public library was established in 1873, but its bookshelf façade has only been around since 2006. Locals were asked to vote on the titles of the books to be displayed and today, it’s one of strangest yet coolest buildings to see in Kansas.
Crooked House, Poland
No, it’s not just your eyes playing tricks on you! This building was actually constructed in all its distorted glory as a homage to Jan Marcin Szancer, the Polish children’s book illustrator who died in 1973. The attraction is a popular one in the town of Sopot and inside, you’ll find a shopping mall.
Barcode Building, Russia
St. Petersburg has a lot going for it – cathedrals, museums, palaces – but this weird Barcode Building is one of a kind. Hopefully it will get you in a shopping mood, too, since inside sits another shopping mall.
Suite Vollard, Brazil
It 05/look like a futuristic tube or even a stack of plates, the Suite Vollard in Curitiba, Parana, is the only spinning building or “moving skyscraper” on Earth. Each floor of this building can rotate fully (taking about an hour) and can move both clockwise and anti-clockwise. Talk about 360-degree views!
Giant Basket, USA
What better way than to showcase your basket-making company than by constructing a giant basket to house your corporate headquarters? The Longaberger Basket Company in Ohio did just that in 1997. Strange building or shameless self-promotion? Probably a bit of both!
Wat Samphran Temple, Thailand
Hi, Godzilla… oh sorry, you’re actually a Chinese dragon! This 17-storey temple in Bangkok is a strange tourist attraction and yet, its construction and meaning remain somewhat a mystery. While it’s not a common guidebook inclusion, this temple is probably worth a visit if you’re in the area, even for the experience of seeing a massive bronze Buddha or walking through parts of the dragon itself!
Snail House, Bulgaria
Awww, isn’t he just lovable and colourful? If you’re in the Bulgarian town of Sofia, make sure you take a look at this big, bright snail building, which was built in 2008 using environmentally friendly materials. Its door looks like a mouth, its chimney is a ladybird and its eyelids act as air vents – who wouldn’t want to go inside?!
Tonneau Bistro & Bar, Japan
If you love the idea of a cold one in the midst of a Japanese summer (or winter!), this cool barrel bar in Okinawa is a must-visit. This crazy building spans 4-stories and everything from bar snacks and restaurant meals to beer and sake are available.
Dancing House, Czech Republic
One, two, cha-cha-cha! These strange buildings have had the rhythm since 1996 when they were completed in Prague and today, they are a popular novelty tourist sight. Inside, they are apparently just as impressive, with towers of glass and wave-like windows and on the top floor, you’ll find a restaurant. Its nickname? Fred and Ginger!