I think it's fair to say we all do a fair bit of traveling on here, whether it be a weekend warrior's trip about our countries or some big multinational excursion, and I'm sure lots of us have traveled to do things both coasters and not coasters. But what's the most unusual way you've discovered something, decided, "hey, I want to go there," and gone? For me, there's no question that it was this place: Cahokia Mounds Native American Site, Collinsville, Illinois Some of you might know this about me, some of you might not, but I'm a huge fan of the Sid Meier's Civilization video game franchise. If you aren't familiar with it, it's basically a computerized game of Risk taken to the literal extreme that's supposed to simulate governing a nation to one of multiple victory types. You have a map to play on with multiple other countries, but also several single city political entities known as City-States. Now all the locations in the game are named after real places so the actual empires you pick from like France, Japan, The Mayans, Morocco, and so forth. The City-States are named after either real world city-states or cities in countries that aren't available in the game. Some of them are pretty obvious (Vatican City, Singapore, Verona, Kiev, ect.), some are a bit more obscure (Lhasa, La Venta, M'banza Kongo). Looking at a list of some of these city states with where their names came from, one of them was Cahokia, which has Mesoamerican architecture in the game. The Wiki described it as one of the largest precolonial cities in North America near the Mississippi River. It was a huge center for trading in the Mississippian Culture for which it served as a sort of capital, so that's why it's a Mercantile City-State in the game. So I did some more research and found out that today it was actually a UNESCO World Herritage Site near St. Louis, just six hours from here! I looked at it and it looked incredible and decided that maybe when it came SFSL's time I would do that while I was out there. Well a few months later my NYC trip with Emily fell through so I decided to use the time off I had to SFSL instead, so naturally I wanted to do this as well. I'd done a few Native American sites before in Ohio and one other precolonial city in Mexico (Tulum's Mayan ruins) but this blew all of those away! There's a nice museum on property with artifacts and dioramas that give you an idea what you're looking at and then you go across the street to Monk's Mound to climb it and actually see it for yourself. Getting up there and seeing the sheer scale of what this city actually was is nothing short of amazing and needless to say, it impressed me way more than Serpent Mound back at home ever could. Mom back at home showed Dad the photos I sent her and both of them were floored, neither of them knew that we had anything like it nearby! This is one of the coolest things I've ever done in my travels and I found out about it through a video game of all places! What's the most unusual way you've discovered a place you ended up visiting?