Skip to content

Toilets From Around the World

  • toilet made from a dried cactus in Bolivia
    Sian James and Morna E. Gregory

    Needles Not Included

    A toilet fashioned from a giant cactus awaits its next al fresco patron on a hiking trail in Bolivia. Caveat squatter: Those are not corncobs in the background.

    1 of 10
  • Tolpehocken Manor Outhouse with separate entrances for men and women
    Sian James and Morna E. Gregory

    George Washington Sat Here

    This seven-hole outhouse behind Tulpehocken Manor in Myerstown, Pa., featured separate-but-unequal facilities for 18th-century users (including, possibly, George Washington): The women's side was larger to accommodate cumbersome hoop dresses.

    2 of 10
  •  Urinette urinal for women
    Sian James and Morna E. Gregory

    Stand-up Gals Only, Please

    The "Urinette" in Montreal's Whiskey Cafe is, yes, a urinal designed for women. That scary-looking white protuberance? It's actually a handle, used to rotate the cup 180 degrees into position. A wall dispenser provides paper covers for each successive user.

    3 of 10
  • Charing Cross Road urinal
    Sian James and Morna E. Gregory


    By day (left) it appears to be nothing but a keyhole-shaped manhole cover on Moor Street in London. Every Thursday at dusk, however, a three-man pop-up urinal rises into position (right) from below street level, providing semiprivate relief for the long weekend to needy pub-crawlers.

    4 of 10
  • The P-Tree a public toilet on a tree trunk
    AP Photo

    P-tree Dish

    A so-called P-tree provides on-the-spot relief for music lovers at Denmark's annual four-day Roskilde Music Festival in late June.

    5 of 10
  • The Victorian Urinals of Rothesay in the Isle of Bute, Scotland- toilets around the world
    Sian James and Morna E. Gregory

    Marble Magnificence

    These elegant Victorian urinals were installed at Scotland's Rothesay Pier resort in 1899. Built for just $850, the facilities were saved from destruction in 1994 by the Strathclyde Building Preservation Trust — which paid $480,000 for the restoration overall.

    6 of 10
  • Sound Princess toilet in Japan
    Koji Sasahara/AP Photo

    Courtesy Is No. 1

    A staffer from Japan's Toto Ltd. activates the company's "Sound Princess" toilet, which emits artificial flushing sounds. Now standard in new construction, the device was invented to conserve water: Japanese women had traditionally flushed continually to mask their bathroom visits.

    7 of 10
  • eco composting squat toilet in India
    EyesWideOpen/Getty Images

    May Thine Aim Be True

    This composting toilet — an unusual variation on the world's ubiquitous "squat toilets" — greets enlightenment seekers at the Yoga Magic Eco Retreat in Anjuna, India.

    8 of 10
  • A ceramic Kangaroo Toilet and a Bear Shaped Urinal for children in Turkey - Toilets around the world
    Sian James and Morna E. Gregory

    Seek Out an Old Pal

    A toilet shaped like a kangaroo and a urinal that's bearly there await upscale buyers at a bathroom fixture store in Izmir, Turkey.              

    9 of 10
  • solid gold and gem-encrusted toilet in Hong Kong
    Mike Clarke/AFP/Getty Images

    Throne of Gold

    Vladimir Lenin may or may not have been punning when he said that gold toilets would be useful reminders of capitalist waste. But a Hong Kong jeweler took him at his word: This 24-karat solid gold toilet in the city's 3-D Gold Shop will set you back a cool $3.5 mil.  

    10 of 10