The 7 Weirdest Places to Have a Drink

A life list of bizarre and unusual watering holes


Drink enough, and even your standard neighborhood bar can take on a surreal appearance. Anyone who's had a zombie or two in one sitting can attest to the power of totally normal walls to swap places with the floorboards. So what happens if the watering hole is surreal from the outset?

If you're looking to up the ante and start out in a place that's half-nightmare (drinks served in medical equipment, anyone?) or half-hallucination (ie, none of the waiters here are over 4 feet tall), try these bizarre -- or simply unexpected -- watering holes from around the globe.
1.) Gallagher's Pub, Antarctica

If there's anyone who needs access to a stiff drink, it's got to be the temporary residents and workers of Antarctica. Located inside the McMurdo Research Station, Gallagher's Pub is one of three bars slinging beer and booze to explorers and scientists trapped in the world's harshest frozen desert.

2.) Chuck E Cheese, United States

In keeping with the theme of "places one needs a drink to survive," we offer America's ubiquitous kid-centric pizza parlor. Okay, so it's clearly not a bar; you can't exactly walk in and order an Aviation. You can get a beer, though, and let's face it, surrounded by shrieking children and dead-eyed animatronics, anything with alcohol content will do the trick.

Runner-up: McDonald's locations throughout Europe.

2nd Runner-up: The Staten Island Ferry. Cheap beer, gorgeous view. Best way to take the edge off a commute, ever.

3.) Hobbit House, The Philippines

Hobbit House boasts two things: 100 beers, and the "smallest waiters in the world." Staffed entirely by little people, the Hobbit House was founded in the 1970s by a -- what else? -- Lord of the Rings obsessive who lived in Manila on a Peace Corps assignment.

4.) Clinic, Singapore

There are two ways to combine the hospital experience with the drinking experience. Since one of the options involves alcohol poisoning and/or liver failure, if you're eager to have these two aesthetics in one night, your best bet is Clinic, the Singapore bar filled with wheel chairs, hospital beds, and drinks served in syringes.

5.) DM Bar, Estonia

Violator fans and Music for the Masses loyalists, brace yourselves: DM stands for Depeche Mode. This Estonian bar pays no general homage to new wave or 80's synth; the love here is fully focused on the boys from Essex. The walls are adorned with memorabilia, the juke box runs the band's discography, and members of the group have been known to stop in and run up a tab.

Runner-up: Bar Luther, Japan's alcohol-laced homage to Luther Vandross.

6.) Big Baobab Bar, South Africa

Come to the Sunland Farm in South Africa to see the largest Baobab tree in the world, then stay -- or, rather, go inside of it -- to have a drink in its honor.

Runner-up: Guacara Taina, the Dominican Republic's cave-bound "disco grotto."

7.) Padre's Bar, Texas

The next time you're in Marfa, Texas, check out the ghost lights, then head to Padre's for the beer and some ghosts of the more traditional variety. Established in 2005, Padre's was built inside of an old funeral home; though the space was fully renovated, it's nonetheless eerie to be in a bathroom that was once an embalming chamber.

Runners-up: The U.S.'s other Most Hanted Bars

Mentioned in this article


  • Snooth User: Philip James
    Founding Member Hand of Snooth Voice of Snooth
    1 12,575

    Its the bucket list for bars - for some reason i really want to see the Hobbit House.

    Sep 09, 2010 at 10:06 AM

  • Snooth User: Carly Wray
    Hand of Snooth Voice of Snooth
    196958 864

    @ Philip -- me, too ... and apparently they now have more than one location! I wonder how they keep up with staffing needs...

    Sep 09, 2010 at 10:25 AM

  • What no other Depeche Mode fans out there? That one would make my list :-)

    Sep 09, 2010 at 11:46 AM

  • Snooth User: lkkovarik
    306791 1

    How did "The Pelican Bar" in Jamaica get left out?

    Sep 09, 2010 at 11:49 AM

  • Snooth User: phred711
    378692 1

    The Houston Museum of Natural Sciences holds a summer Friday night series called Mixers and Elixers where you can drink surrounded by dinosaurs and dance to local bands.

    Sep 09, 2010 at 1:32 PM

  • Snooth User: kellyse
    285492 1

    Ok...I'm wondering where the "Safe House", in Milwaukee WI fits in? A "spy" bar set up after Spy vs. Spy, James Bond and others...that have attracted people and celeberties from around the globe!

    Sep 09, 2010 at 3:32 PM

  • Snooth User: benluck8
    575621 1

    Your list sorely misses the C-130 airplane, still bullet-riddled from being shot at when it was a drug runner in Costa Rica, which is owned by Allan Templeton and can be found at the Costa Verde hotel near Quepos and the Manuel Antonio park on Costa Rica's Pacific coast. There's a dance floor where the drop-down back doors are, and local monkey's ("Still More Monkeys Than People") scamper around on the wings and inside the motor nacelles. Sit at tables in the shade of the wings and sip potent cocktails and munch on charcoal barbecued local fish. It's lovely, but it's also really weird. Tell Mr. Templeton or his agents that "Barney sent me" and you'll get a free drink.

    Sep 09, 2010 at 4:41 PM

  • Snooth User: suziqcu
    505632 10

    While I do not seek out McDonalds, EVER, and certainly not while in Europe, I thought it was a great idea to have beer and wine fact I had a shrimp salad and Rose when I did find myself in MCd's in Belgium!

    Sep 09, 2010 at 5:55 PM

  • Snooth User: witnwool
    231192 4

    Kellyse, I agree! The Safe House in Milwaukee WI is a very unusual and fun "spy bar" with lots of entertaining elements and surprises that kept us laughing and exploring........and drinking!!

    Sep 09, 2010 at 8:00 PM

  • Snooth User: Bonniex2
    559726 4

    The Safe House sounds like a fun place to drink. Wi is always good with drinking.....where is Ireland on this, I guess they are not unusual.

    Sep 09, 2010 at 9:09 PM

  • Whoa! Freaky, you say? How about the crypt of a church in and wine and the odd food...can't recall the proper name; must be a mental block caused by the surroundings...near Kings Cross!

    Sep 09, 2010 at 9:23 PM

  • Snooth User: ericlevy
    488307 12

    Hobbit house also WAS one of best bars in world....Great music talent there...but alas...after being in biz at least 20 is no more

    Sep 10, 2010 at 7:07 AM

  • Snooth User: BonzaiOne
    579515 1

    Totally agree about the C-130 plane in Costa Rica! We were there for New Years Eve a few years back. A great place to celebrate in an unconventional setting!

    Sep 14, 2010 at 2:02 PM

  • The Last Chance @ Jack London Square in Oakland. Those who know, know.

    Sep 14, 2010 at 11:36 PM

  • Snooth User: rlc111
    611201 1

    who's got 2 thumbs and hit the number one spot on this list? THIS GIRL!!! awesome.

    Oct 14, 2010 at 5:15 PM

  • talking about weird bars we have a bar in corralejo called can't get more weird than that.......everyone must visit us at least once in a lifetime....lovely little cosy bar, with several hundred elephants, where anything can happen after midnight from buiding a sand sculpture in the bar to watching the kenyan boys doing their limbo under fire acrobatic act....come and see for yourself...caz and loz look forward to meeting you

    Mar 10, 2011 at 6:02 PM

Add a Comment