Ripley’s Believe It or Not! in Branson is one attraction that must be seen to be believed - there’s simply no ‘or not’ about it! This place intrigues you from the moment your eye catches the brilliant yellow building that’s incredibly cracked right down the middle! Nope, it’s not a remnant from Branson’s tornado of 2012, it was actually built in 1994 to recall the incredible earthquake of 1812 that rocked New Madrid, Missouri and measured nearly an 8.0 on the Richter Scale! Most people in this country associate earthquakes with California, but Missouri lies along a pretty impressive fault line, and this particular quake was felt as far away as Pennsylvania - it caused church bells to ring in Philadelphia! Another interesting outcome of the quake was that it actually caused the Mississippi River to run backwards for three days...believe it or not? Believe it, because it happened! The area’s history thus makes it the ideal home for a placed packed with the strange, the odd, the weird, the intriguing, the creepy, and the downright most ridiculously entertaining collection of items you’ll find anywhere! Ripley’s 12,000-square-foot Odditorium features eight uniquely-themed galleries stuffed with more than 450 fascinating exhibits.
On your self-guided tour of Ripley’s Believe It or Not!, you’ll encounter unusual things, including a real, honest-to-goodness shrunken head, an authentic vampire-killing kit, a 24-foot robot made entirely of automobile parts (no, it does not ‘transform’ back into a vehicle!), and even a wicked spinning vortex tunnel! There’s a model aircraft carrier made with 48,000 matchsticks, the Roman Coliseum made of playing cards, and even things like the world’s largest ball of string and the world’s largest roll of toilet paper...just imagine, you could teepee the entire city of Branson - not that we’re encouraging that behavior, mind you! How did this all begin? Once upon a time, there was a real person named Ripley. Robert Ripley travelled the world collecting the most odd, interesting, and unusual items he could find - sort of like a modern-day Marco Polo, a maybe a slightly more bizarre version of Indiana Jones! He was many things during his short life of 58 years, including a cartoonist, an amazing entrepreneur, and an amateur anthropologist whose Believe It or Not! moniker begin as a newspaper panel series, and went on to become a radio show and a television show before many items in his vast collection of oddities became properly displayed in the world’s most unusual museums! Of course, if you only choose one Odditorium to visit, it definitely must be Branson’s Ripley’s Believe It or Not!
Helpful Hints/Additional Information
- Ripley’s Believe It or Not! Odditorium can be found at 3326 West Highway 76.
- You can visit Ripley’s 365 days a year! It’s open daily at 9:30AM. From Sunday through Thursday, the last admittance is at 8:00PM. On Friday and Saturday, the last admittance is at 10:00PM.
- On Christmas Day, the Odditorium opens at 10:00AM, and the last admittance is at 6:00PM.
- Both still and video photography is permitted and encouraged at Ripley’s, and they’d love for your to share your captured memories with them!
- Allow about one-and-a-half (1.5) hours to enjoy a proper tour of the attraction.
- There are guest restrooms available with average-sized toilet paper.
- There is a gift shop on site at Ripley’s; however, Branson laws prohibit the sale of authentic shrunken human heads!
- The facility is fully accessible to those with disabilities, including guests with wheelchairs.
Branson is brimming with a wide variety of amazing museums, but there’s only one that happily carries the label of being the most strange! Make sure you add a little bit of strange to your Branson itinerary and venture into the world of Ripley’s Believe It or Not!