Roswell, New Mexico, site of probably the most well known UFO incident, at least in the United States.
In early July of 1947, there was an alleged alien vessel that crashed on a ranch just outside of Roswell. There are a bunch of conspiracy theories and different stories but many believe that not only a flying saucer, but also the bodies of 4 aliens were recovered at the site. The official story is that it was simply a weather balloon (it somehow took the military a number of days of researching the object to realize that and in the process, they threatened a number of people to corroborate that story, but hey, that makes perfect sense for a weather balloon right?).
I’m not going to get into too great detail about the story itself this is more about the town than anything. Everything about this town is dealing with the crash. The International UFO Museum and Research Center is here with all kinds of information about the incident as well as other incidents around the world. They even talk about the hoaxes as well and how even they got hoaxed.
They were given what they believed was a piece of the actual wreckage and upon further testing they found was really just the result of an artist in the area having dropped some scraps from a very rare type of damascening *(the process of inlaying different types of metal) using gold and silver (it is still on display though with the full explanation).
They have a small theater where they show some documentaries about the incident as well as a library filled with books and magazines about aliens, they even have a section of declassified government documents about UFO research. It is certainly worth a visit.
The rest of the town is pretty small but everything is covered with aliens, from alien murals on buildings, to carved aliens in front of stores to even streetlights made with alien heads. There are a number of stores dedicated to selling alien merchandise and every fourth of July (American Independence day), they have an alien parade as well as a science fiction convention. I’m sure it must be very interesting to be here around that time.
With the quick detour out of the way it is now time to start making our way towards the amazing Grand Canyon.
*Although different types of damascening have been around for a long time (most notably used in Japanese katana) the term actual comes from Damascus Steel which is a type of actual steel that was extremely strong and lightweight and the process of making it was lost and has never been duplicated. This is the basis and inspiration for the Valyrian Steel in the popular Game of Thrones series.