Destination: Tsunami Research Facility, Oregon State University - Corvallis, Ore.
Here, you'll get to see the country's largest wave basin (160 by 87 by 5 feet), along with a 342-foot-long wave flume (sorry, no surfing) and a piston wave generator. All are designed to simulate the effects of tsunamis striking harbors, land and man-made structures. A scaled model of an offshore oil-rig platform was recently built inside the lab and hit with waves, yielding data that will enable engineers to build stronger, more stable rigs. The facility offers tours, open houses, workshops and viewings of actual experiments.