The U.S. is full of incredible places to see in a campervan rental, both natural and manmade. From haunted places to wacky museums, there are several things to do and see. Another possibility for a different type of road trip is to visit old prisons across the country.
Following are the 5 most interesting old prisons in the United States:
- Alcatraz, San Francisco, California-Alcatraz is famous for a variety of reasons. It saw an escape that has gone down in history as a genius plan by three criminals who made rafts, dug holes through their cells and successfully escaped. Another reason why people like to visit Alcatraz is because the history of the prison and interesting facts are explained in depth through an audio tour and there is plenty to see while there.
It also has a fascinating view of San Francisco that while may be interesting for visitors today was probably a source of depression and longing for prisoners back in the day.
- Sing Sing Prison, New York-The Sing Sing prison still houses prisoners to this day, but that doesn’t take away from the fact that many people still visit it. Sing Sing prison has a museum where guests can visit and learn about how strict and horrifying discipline in prisons once were and about some of the prisons most historical and terrible prisoners. It will definitely be enough to make you want to behave for the rest of your life.
- West Virginia State Penitentiary, West Virginia-Mysterious and full of history, the West Virginia State Penitentiary is a captivating destination for anyone who likes to visit museums and places with plenty of stories to tell. This castle-like prison was built by prisoners themselves in 1866 and was home to place full of violent people and pasts. It was closed in the mid 80’s due to it being deemed unfit to house people with its tiny cells that were considered inhumane.
- Old Idaho Penitentiary, Idaho-It is said to be haunted and even though there is no concrete proof on whether this is true, the history of this prison and what went on behind the concrete walls tell a terrifying story. It was home to some of the most dangerous criminals, dating back to 1872 when it first opened. From men beaten to death to executions, it isn’t the prettiest place to visit but if you like haunted and you like history, you may appreciate the tour.
- Yuma Territorial Prison, Arizona-Also believed to be haunted, the Yuma Territorial Prison opened in 1876 and only lasted for 33 years. That was enough time for plenty of prison horrors to happen. While no one was ever executed here, many prisoners passed away during their time. Whether it is haunted or not, you can learn a lot about its history at the Yuma Territorial Prison museum.
If you have the stomach for learning about how prisons used to operate and the stories about the lives of the inmates, then a prison tour in the U.S could be an interesting one for your next great road trip.