20 Tourist Traps That Should Best Be Avoided, Shared By People Who Actually Visited Them

Published 3 years ago

When researching destinations for your next vacation, you can easily get tempted to visit a certain place just by looking at all of the professional photos that pop up once type in the name in the search bar. However, even though places like the Taj Mahal or Mount Rushmore might look stunning in pictures, the reality is often much different from what you imagine. Luckily, there are people out there who had visited these tourist traps and shared their stories so you know what to expect before you book your flight.

Recently, one Reddit user asked people to share some touristy places that were absolutely not worth the hype, and their stories will help you save both time and money. Check out some stories about the worst tourist traps shared by people who actually visited them in the gallery below!

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Image source: PacSan300

Dubai. It’s the most soulless, cultureless, and artificial city I’ve been to. The shameless and obscene display of bling-bling only adds to this vibe, and the supertall skyscrapers and mega malls get old sooner or later.

To top it off, all of this is built overnight on what is essentially slave labor.


Image source: lenachristina

While the Louvre is wonderful, the Mona Lisa was a huge disappointment.

The painting itself is tiny and there are always hordes of people around it.

There are a million better things to see at the Louvre.


Image source: _Emerald_Eyes_

The Dead Sea. You’re in Israel. In the desert. It’s blazing hot, like 115°F. You think you’ll go take a dip in the Dead Sea to cool off, right? Wrong. First, you have to pay to go through a spa to use their towels, pools, etc. Then you take the wagon/shuttle that drives you from the spa down to the shore. The wagon/shuttle goes about 5 miles per hour in the scortching sun. No breeze. Next, you get to the shore of the Dead Sea. You the proceed to run over the sand that’s so hot you’re sure your feet will burn off. You tentatively step into the water….and it’s like the hottest bath you’ve ever taken in your life. The water is maybe 1° away from boiling. But you figure you’ve made it this far, might as well get the full experience. So you submerge. It’s a mistake. Every pore on your body is burning from the salt. If you have shaved any part of your body within the last three years, you will feel the salt seep into the little micro cuts and burn you from the inside out. You find cuts on your body you didn’t even know you had. Even your asshole is burning because you have pooped and wiped within the last week, so your skin is raw there. And the worst part is, when you decide you have had enough of this boiling body of water, you practically have to crawl out because you’re too bouyant to stand. And in the process of crawling out, you scrape your knees on the bottom where the salt rocks have crystalized which sets off a whole new round of pain. So now you’re hot, sticky from the salt, and every inch of your body burns.


Image source: TommyHolef**ker

The glass bridge over the grand canyon.

Total rip-off tourist trap.

It takes HOURS to get there from Vegas

They charge you $20 to park in an empty desert

They charge you $30 per person to take the bus from the parking to the attraction (it’s like walking from parking into a mall – no distance at all!)

Then they charge you $30 per person if you actually want to walk on the bridge

You cannot take pictures or bring a camera onto the bridge, but they will sell them to you, of course.

There is one overpriced place to eat where they sell you canned food heated up in a microwave for big money… or you could drive 5 hours back to Vegas…

Go there to get scalped.


Image source: flipamadiggermadoo

Disney Parks. Want to eat? Be ready to Shell out $50 a person per day. Oh, you came for the rides? Enjoy the four or five you make it on unless it’s a busy day, those days enjoy the two or three.


Image source: Nevermind04

The Taj Mahal (Agra). It’s surrounded by 10-meter-high walls, and the entrance fee is ludicrously expensive compared to any other attraction in India. If you’re in Agra and want to see the Taj Mahal, go across the river. There are some gardens almost directly across from it, and there’s a great spot by the river with a brilliant view of the Taj Mahal, particularly at sunset. This experience is totally free, and you won’t have to deal with crowds.


Image source: ccut

Machu Picchu. I respect the Incas for building it, the real issue I have with it is the current management. It’s flooded with people (they let in over 3x the cap sto make money) being annoying and it’s very expensive, they bus people up a huge hill all day and we are required to have a tour guide and only spend 3 mins at certain areas. It’s misrepresenting the history of the Incas to people with selfie sticks. Not my fave

You are WAY better off seeing the Inca capitol, Cusco because it’s where they actually lived and thrived. See Sasqsyhuaman and the Qoricancha sun temple. Go on a backpacking trip and you will find Inca and pre Inca stuff Everywhere. With no idiotic tourists families. I highly recommend it.

¡Viva Perú!


Image source: DownUpOverAndBack

If you go to the Great Wall of China, I’d suggest not going to the section right there in Beijing. Very rebuilt and touristy.

Take a van ride a ways out of the city, to the Simitai section. Now there’s some uncrowded, old-school Great Wall.


Image source: JBleezy1979

Mount Rushmore. It looks exactly like any picture you’ve ever seen. It’s not easy to get up close to it. If you’re in that area, I recommend prioritizing Devil’s Tower. It’s well worth it.


Image source: CaligulaAndHisHorse

Sydney Opera House. The tours are expensive and the inside is kind of underwhelming. The outside is free and is also the best part. ALTERNATIVE: Just walk around Sydney harbor. It’s free and gorgeous.


Image source: JamJarre

The London Eye

What you expect

Whisked into your futuristic pod by smiling flight attendants, you gently rise above the ancient city of London. The crowds fall away as the panorama of the city is laid out before you – truly an experience for the ages

What happens

A snotty customer services assistant rips your d**k out through your wallet as you are shuffled into a stiflingly hot glass pod with dozens of other people. Sweaty tourists barge you out of the way to get to the windows before you have even left the ground. There are children, and they are screaming. The ride is 45 minutes long.


Image source: earlymusicaficionado

Branson. The Simpsons weren’t really joking when they described it as Las Vegas ran by Ned Flanders.


Image source: burgundyotter

The Liberty Bell. Wait in a long line to look at… a bell. That looks exactly like it does in all the Philly souvenirs. They don’t even let you lick it.


Image source: shiftdnb

Times Square and Piccadilly Circus, same damn chain restaurants and tourist traps


Image source: TheTrustyCrumpet

Pyramids of Giza; might be being too harsh, but the swarm of aggressive market vendors surrounding them makes the place a bit of a nightmare. One woman from our group asked a guard to take her photo standing next to the pyramids, and the guard refused to give it back without recieving payment (I cant recall the amount but being extorted by a man with an AK-47 isn’t an ideal situation). Inside the tombs themselves it reeked of piss and was a claustrophobes complete nightmare. A ~ 5 foot tall, very steep ramp with f**k all to prevent a fall wide enough to fit 1.5 men at best with a steady stream of people coming up from the opposite direction. Being literally yelled at to buy headscarves and assorted plastic s*** by the truly horrible merchants outside completely ruined my experience of the place, which I’m so, so sad about because I spent months looking forward to the trip.


Image source: [deleted]

The Leaning Tower of Pisa – five minutes, that photo, and you’re done.


Image source: Jummatron

Every Hard Rock Cafe. Seriously, the pricing is similar to a nice chain restaurant, but the food is right on par with Applebee’s.


Image source: rachelgraychel

Waikiki Beach. It’s a horrible, crowded concrete beach surrounded by traffic and overpriced stores.

Go to literally any other beach in Oahu. But the coolest thing to do is drive up to north shore, and pick a spot on any one of the many relatively isolated beaches there and enjoy the scenery.


Image source: [deleted]

Madame Tussauds in London. You’re in a city filled to the brim with history and culture and free museums, but you’d rather wait in line for hours and pay a fortune to go see a mannequin of Justin Bieber?


Image source: aircraftwhisperer

Oktoberfest. Way too crowded for my liking. I had a much better time at fests in the smaller villages.

Aušrys Uptas

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places to avoid, tourist traps, travel, traveling, worst tourist traps
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