Tuesday, October 3, 2023


RVer attractions: Low advertising budget equals low cost to visit

By Bob Difley
Many RVers focus on the destination and forget the trip. Think of all the great attractions you pass when you have the blinders on barreling down the interstate.

Public domain image

Many of these attractions, whether scenic, historic, or of unique interest, are free, and since they would therefore not have big advertising budgets, like large commercial attractions, you can easily miss them.

It would be very easy, for instance, to miss the Deming Luna Mimbres Museum in Deming, New Mexico, which you could sail right by on Interstate 10 on your way to Las Cruces. Run by volunteers with no advertising budget, the museum lives in the old 1916 National Guard Armory and two additional buildings. They document life in New Mexico from the early 1800s.

So, since you aren’t going to see lots of advertising, you have to find out about these attractions in another way. One good way is to ask at visitor centers, state welcome centers, chamber of commerce offices, federal agency offices (BLM, NFS, etc.), park entry stations, etc. You could otherwise miss a stunning scenic view or other site worth seeing—as well as missing out on free entertainment.

And often, when you are visiting smaller attractions or local museums that are in small towns or rural areas, they will let you stay overnight in their parking lot—especially when they know you are going to visit their attraction. Not a bad deal, both free camping and a cheap or free attraction.

You can find Bob Difley’s RVing e-books on Amazon Kindle.


RV Travel
RV Travel
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1 year ago

Once took us three days to get from Nashville Tn to Pensacola! So many places to see, so little time!
Just south of Foley Al going to Gulf Shores is a very interesting railroad museum located in the old train station. Sorry can’t think of the name of the place. Ask about the model train layout. If you can talk them into running it, it’s great!

Donald N Wright
1 year ago

Have you visited the Museum in Clayton NM ? There used to be a KOA in Clayton, but the owner dropped their membership so they could make a profit.

Frank Niehus
1 year ago

Interesting some years ago, maybe 10 we were on our first trip to AZ and took our time going down and stopped at the Deming museum, it was great and could have spent more time but maybe closing or something so didn’t get to see it all, will go back again. Staying in their parking lot is also true. I’ve stayed in a couple, one in Rallings WY at the old Prison museum (another great museum) that was closed and went in the next morning then another one the Potato museum in Blackfoot ID.

1 year ago

Most of our trips have been shorter point to point trips and stopping at attractions have not really been part of our plan. However, we’re planning a much longer trip in the spring where this would be interesting. I have a question though, how do you know if these attractions have parking available to suit your rig? I’m fearful of getting myself “stuck” in a situation I can’t get out of!

1 year ago
Reply to  KBowden

I use Google Maps satellite view or Google street view to check it out first.

1 year ago
Reply to  KBowden

Google the address and look at the satellite and street views. Even better is Google Earth which has a distance measuring tool.

1 year ago

My wife always made me turn around when she saw anything that looked interesting. We found many great attractions this way. We traveled the back roads as much as possible. Things have changed If we want to stay in a particular place we have to reserve ahead, which means we can’t stop for long on the way. Just not as much fun as it once was. Sometimes we would wander for days before we reached our next planned destination and sometimes we never did go where we planned because we found a place much more interesting.

Sylvia Stenander
1 year ago

There is also “an app for that.” It’s called Offbeat Attractions. It’s map based so you find the location you’re planning to visit on the map and all these unusual things pop up. Did you know that there is a Victorian Perambulator Museum near Erie, PA? 😁

1 year ago

I lived in Erie, PA for 30 years and didn’t know that! 😄

1 year ago

We loved this place. It was recommended to us by the staff at RV park where we stayed. By the looks, it would seem to take about an hour to go through it but once inside, it actually took us close to 3!

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