Mayukh Saha
Mayukh Saha
May 1, 2024 ·  9 min read

People Share The Worst Tourist Destinations That Aren’t Worth The Hype

Ever dreamed of visiting a famous landmark only to find yourself shoulder-to-shoulder with a throng of tourists and feeling a bit underwhelmed? You’re not alone. While some travel destinations live up to the hype, others might not be quite what you expect. This article dives into the world of both beloved and overrated tourist spots. We’ll explore Reddit threads where travelers share their honest experiences, along with insights from travel expert Jhona Yellin. Get ready to discover hidden gems, alternative destinations, and crucial travel tips to make your next adventure truly unforgettable.

1. Not for Everyone: Solo Travelers in India and Egypt

Taj Mahal, India
Image Credits: Unsplash

Panda Kicki says on Reddit, “Very true. I was scared in India and I have been to 45+ countries. The hostility to me as a women was staggering. Another solo woman traveller was hit in the head with a rock that was thrown from a bike. I was hit by a water bottle. Sri Lanka in the other hand felt very safe to travel in. Egypt…yeah…not without male company.”

2. Cruise Ship Blues

Cruise ship
Image Credits: Unsplash

While some Redditors enjoy cruises, others find them overcrowded and not what they used to be. Amanda Moore on Reddit says, “Cruise ships should somehow count on this list as well. They’re definitely not like they used to be.

Read More: 25+ Cities That Might Make You Think Twice About Visiting

3. Tourist Trap or Paradise? Mallorca in Spain

Image Credits: Unsplash

Travel expert Jhona Yellin is unsure about Mallorca, known for its beaches and nightlife, due to potential crowds. She said, “Despite the allure of its sun-soaked beaches and vibrant nightlife, the tales of endless parties and throngs of tourists make me hesitant to add it to my itinerary. Sometimes, the promise of paradise is overshadowed by the perils of popularity.”

4. Beware of Crowds: Athens in Peak Season

Image Credits: Unsplash

Jhona shares her experience in Athens during August, finding it overcrowded and unpleasant. “One prime example is our trip to Athens a few years back,” the expert says. “It was a miserable tale of overcrowding at its finest! Our visit during August, when the scorching heat failed to deter hordes of tourists, turned out to be more of a test of endurance than a leisurely exploration. Every historic site in Athens was overrun by selfie sticks, and even the secluded beaches were invaded by sun-seekers.”

5. Times Square: A Sensory Overload

Times Square
Image Credits: Unsplash

Full of flashing billboards, aggressive costumed characters, and busy streets, Times Square isn’t for everyone. Andy Frobig on Reddit says, “I worked at 39th and 8th starting in 2010 and I feel pretty sure there were already plenty of Elmos and Spider-Men, and gold living statues, and living Statues of Liberty in Times Square before 2013. I can say that New Yorkers tend to avoid the square like the plague.

6. Dubai: Not for Everyone

Image Credits: Unsplash

Some Redditors find Dubai to be unpleasant. One Redditor said, “Unless you want to rot next to your fancy swimming pool, Dubai isn’t that great. No freedom there. All there is to see is the Burj Khalifa”

7. Nassau in the Bahamas: A Pushy Paradise

Image Credits: Unsplash

Nassau is a port town filled with vendors selling overpriced souvenirs. A comment reads: “Nassau. It’s in the Bahamas and most cruise lines always stop at that port. But it’s a whole town dedicated to trap tourists into buying overpriced stuff. They play music through the whole town and you can’t walk more than 2ft without someone trying to sell you something.

8. Beyond the Beaches: Bondi Beach in Sydney

Bondi Beach
Image Credits: Unsplash

For a less crowded and more relaxed beach experience, Redditors recommend venturing beyond Bondi Beach in Sydney. A Redditor said, “Bondi beach. Honestly one of the crappier beaches in Sydney that is so chock full of tourists that you’re swimming/relaxing with 8 million other people. If you can, go down the coast further – Wollongong, Kiama and Gerringong have beautiful beaches with much less traffic and friendlier people.”

9. Cabo San Lucas: Beware of Drugged Drinks

Cabo san Lucas
Image Credits: Unsplash

A Redditor shares a scary experience with a drugged drink in Cabo San Lucas. A commenter said, “Cabo. Went in honeymoon in 2017. We never left the tourist areas yet wife’s drink was still drugged. Thankfully the “free drink” they offered me, I declined. Also thankfully my wife was okay. Just needed to sleep it off. I had a friend who also had a laced drink in Cabo last summer.”

Read More: 7 Places to Visit Before You Leave This World

10. Disneyland: Not for the Faint of Heart

Disneyland, Paris
Image Credits: Unsplash

With long lines, crowds, and potentially cranky children, Disneyland Paris might not be ideal for everyone. A Redditor explained, “Not to mention the $$$$$$ needed. We went to Disneyland (California) on our honeymoon, but that was ages ago, about 25 years after it first opened. It was a pleasant experience then, but I’d never go there now. Went to Disney World in Florida once, but that was when we were living there back in the 1980s, and only because we had out-of-town company who wanted to go. Having been to Disneyland just a few years prior, I didn’t care for it – I thought it was too big, and walking around in oppressive heat and humidity was miserable.”

11. Hollywood Walk of Fame: Less Than Glamorous

Image Credits: Unsplash

The Hollywood Walk of Fame is underwhelming, according to some Redditors. One of them said, “I enjoyed looking for specific stars and took a lot of pics. But once was enough.”

12. It’s Just a Bell: The Liberty Bell

The Liberty Bell
Image Credits: Unsplash

The Liberty Bell might be less impressive than expected. According to one Redditor, “The Liberty Bell is a bell. Don’t know what else I was expecting.”

13. Skip the Rock: Plymouth Rock

Plymouth Rock
Image Credits: Pexels

Some Redditors consider Plymouth Rock a bit underwhelming. A top commentator said, “It was meaningful to me, as an immigrant but there’s nothing else there. Funny story, I was working in an office in California and the receptionist asked where I was from due to my accent. I replied that I was from England, near Plymouth, where the Mayflower sailed from. She said, “Oh, did they call it Plymouth in England, too?””

14. Cruise Ship Chaos: Venice and Santorini in Summer

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For a more peaceful experience in Venice or Santorini, avoid the summer months flooded with cruise ships. Jhona says, “For places like Venice or Santorini, avoiding the summer months when cruise ships descend can ensure a more peaceful experience. Instead, opt for the shoulder seasons or even winter when you can have these iconic spots all to yourself.”In essence, there’s no one-size-fits-all approach to travel,” the expert says. “It’s all about doing your homework, understanding the local dynamics, and timing your visit wisely.”

Read More: 25 Destinations Being Ruined By Excessive Tourism 

15. The Grand Canyon: Not All Sides Are Created Equal

The Grand Canyon
Image Credits: Unsplash

The tourist areas near Vegas at the Grand Canyon are considered crowded. National Parks offer a better experience when it comes to natural sights.

16. Land’s End and John O’Groats in the UK: Disappointing Endpoints

Land's End
Image Credits: Unsplash

These popular spots are known to be underwhelming and overpriced. A commentator said, “Land’s End and John O’Groats are neither the northernmost nor southernmost points of the country but have become tourist attractions because people believe them to be. Both are utter c**p holes that exist only to relieve tourists of money for c**p souvenirs and overpriced drinks.”

17. Times Square on New Year’s Eve: Not for the Faint of Heart

TImes Square
Image Credits: Unsplash

With long waits and crowded conditions, Times Square on New Year’s Eve might not be for everyone. One commentator said, “Was in London on NYE 2019 and considered (very briefly) watching the fireworks from Tower Bridge (or London Bridge?). Unsurprisingly an estimated million of other people had had that brilliant idea, too. To go through with it I’d have had to enter the bridge in the afternoon (~5 pm, I think) and not leave until midnight, or else lose my place. The winter weather is considerably warmer than New York, but I think not even a sunny 24°, a deck chair, and a server at my disposal would have made me go through with that schedule.”

18. Mount Rushmore: Underwhelming For Some

Mount Rushmore
Image Credits: Unsplash

While iconic, Mount Rushmore is underwhelming, according to some Redditors. A Redditor said, “An abomination and embarrassment to our country, and a monumental insult to the indigenous peoples who have lived there and prayed there for centuries before we ever heard of the land. It is a monument only to our hubris, arrogance, and insensitivity. The men whose faces are represented upon the stone would probably not have advocated for its creation.”

19. Salem, Massachusetts: A Fun, But Potentially Overhyped Tourist Trap

St. Episcopal's Church, Salem
Image Credits: Unsplash

Salem is a popular Halloween destination, but some find it to be a tourist trap. Someone exclaimed, “I went during Halloween the first time. It was fun, but I preferred it the second time I went. It was off season, and I got to see all the things I couldn’t get to the first time, due to long lines, and crowds.”

Read More: 30+ Most Dangerous Beaches In The World

20. Ferris Wheel Flight? The London Eye

London Eye
Image Credits: Unsplash

The London Eye is a basic Ferris wheel ride, and the name might be a bit misleading. A Redditor commented, “Fair enough if you are a tourist and probably not coming back to London but it’s way overpriced for what it is. Saying that I haven’t spoken to anyway who didn’t enjoy themselves on it.”

21. Neuschwanstein Castle in Germany: Pretty But Not Unique

Neuschwanstein Castle
Image Credits: Unsplash

While beautiful, Neuschwanstein Castle is not historically significant and there are many other castles to explore in Europe. Someone commented, “Neuschwanstein Castle-Yes, you’ll get a great picture. The same picture that the other 500 people on the bridge are currently taking and the same one that a million people have seen over the years. There are a lot better castles in Germany to visit.”

22. Venice or Bust?

Image Credits: Unsplash

Some Redditors find Venice to be overcrowded, expensive, and smelly, while others recommend exploring it beyond peak season. Some Redditors say, “Venice didn’t do anything for me. If you want to see canals, go to somewhere like Bruges, Belgium instead. Better food, better beer, smaller crowds, etc. I’ve loved every other place I’ve visited in Italy, just not Venice.”

23. Stonehenge: Smaller Than Expected

Image Credits: Unsplash

Stonehenge might be less impressive than what some visitors expect. It is, literally, a collection of rocks arranged in a special manner. There is nothing much to ponder on, unless you are a historian.

24. Gondola Rides in Venice: Overpriced and Overhyped

Gondola in Venice
Image Credits: Unsplash

Gondola rides in Venice can be overpriced and not worth the hype, according to some. There are far too many gondolas going around at the same time to have that romantic feeling you see.

25. Parisian Magic: Paris Despite the Crowds

Image Credits: Unsplash

Jhona acknowledges that Paris can be crowded but argues that iconic sites like the Eiffel Tower are still worth experiencing. So, for the sake of ticking it off the list, you should visit it.

Read More: 25+ Cities That Might Make You Think Twice About Visiting

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