Top 25 Worst World Tourist Traps
Tourist traps. For those with any travelling experience, they have been exposed or even bought into these things. These are heavily advertised, overpriced and are always crowded. Because of these travelling features, many people have a loathing for these things.
In the end, these are terrible experiences and are stressors afterwards. So to help with saving you the headache, we’ve put together a list of some of the worst tourist traps around. While some on this list aren’t that bad, some are much worse, so consider yourself warned.
Pyramids of Giza, Cairo
Every single day, roughly 5,000 people travel the Egyptian desert to go and see these Pyramids. You can be saved a bit by taking a camel ride or an aerial tour, but if you ever want to get in the Pyramids, you’ll need to be part of the crowd.
Our suggestion is instead of going for this, go and visit Saqqara, which houses the Step Pyramid. It’s nice and it’s a little bit more off the beaten path.
Times Square, New York City
This place has become nothing, but a brilliant neon show of advertisements that’s crammed with people on the sidewalks. Yes it’s iconic in its own way, but it can do a lot to your eyes and your own sanity too. You’re better off visiting this place in the early morning hours where the crowds are thinner. This is the case with many of these locations on this list.
Cancun houses some of the most beautiful beaches around, but it is mired with the most extreme tourist infrastructure around. You could say this place is more of a tourist city than an actual city.
For better options, check out Isla Holbox or Celestun.
India is already crowded as is and it’s paired up with an iconic place – Taj Mahal. This place is infested with people and it’s slowly becoming worse. You’re much better off crossing to the other side of the Yamuna River to get an idea of how many people there are.
The only thing you’ll need to tolerate are the piles and stench of rotting sewage that’s back there.
Forbidden City, Beijing
Although it’s been closed to outsiders, the Emperor of China’s Palace has well over 1,000 buildings that have made several destination lists. There’s even a Starbucks now situated in there.
If you want to be avoiding the long lines of entry to this place, get there in about 30 minutes before this opens and make a point of checking the big sites first.
Avenue of Stars, Hong Kong
Built in 2004, this is one of those traps for the Chinese mainland in mind. There are all kinds of souvenir shops and the main attraction is a statue of Bruce Lee. The only great thing about this is the fact that the view of the harbour is nice if you can squeeze through the crowd.
Sydney Fish Market, Australia
While markets themselves are tourist attractions, this one is particularly bad. The only perks from this market is that they sell you overpriced fish. You can’t even get good views of the harbour thanks to all the cement factories.
Old Town, Prague
Out of all of Europe, this is one of the most jam-packed places to check out. Its streets are filled with people who come to check out this place. Instead of doing that, we’d suggest crossing the Vltava River and going to many of the parks that are there. From there, you’ll get a better view of the skyline and come to understand why Old Town is known as the City of a Thousand Spires.
The cheapest tour of Elvis’s former home will cost you $30, which is already asking for a bit much. Unless you are someone who is a hardcore fan, it’s not worth paying this for such a small experience.
Notre Dame, Paris
It was in April 2019 when there was a fire at Notre Dame, but it still doesn’t change the fact that this is a tourist trap at its core. It’s sad about the fire, but this is not a place where you can get some peace and quiet.
Leaning Tower of Pisa, Italy
It’s still impressive how such poor architecture like this could last for so long, but it doesn’t make much sense these days to pay 15 euros for a chance to wait in a lengthy line to climb up the tower and then come back down.
Considered a prime snorkeling spot, it’s all a farce when you get there. The water is a lot murkier and there is not a fish in sight. Not only that, but you’ll be spending a lot of that money dodging crowds.
Willis Tower, Chicago
Also known as the Sears Tower, you’ll need to go through brutally long lines before you can reach the top. Paired with the crowds of people, it’s going to be tough to take decent shots.
Empire State Building
Along with Willis Tower is the Empire State Building. Though this one can be even more of a struggle than what it’s worth. But don’t get us wrong, getting up to the 86th floor and seeing the city from there is a wonderful experience.
Nanjing Dong Lu, Shanghai
Referred to as the “best shopping street in China,” it’s really just empty words. There is a lot of history behind this spot for sure, but the history of the place has been replaced by ubiquitous brands.
Walt Disney World, Orlando
Unless you are a big fan of Disney or have never been to an amusement park, chances are you’re going to walk away cheated. It’s common that the tour packages are expensive and not worth it along with the price of snacks and food being way too much too.
If you ever want to take a trip out there, it might be smart to bring some binoculars. Why? Because there is going to be a massive crowd here just to experience this place. It’s impossible at this point to get close to this historical place and not at all worth it. That is unless you love rocks and history.
What was once considered a romantic getaway has now become a town built around tourism heavily. To many these days, there is less of a desire to view these reversing falls. Not to mention getting through customs and parking can also be a huge deterrent too.
Gondola Rides, Venice
Gondola rides are nice and romantic, but are also pretty expensive. A forty minute ride can cost you upwards of $110. If it’s been your dream to do this, go for it as you get a nice view of the city.
Blarney Stone, Ireland
According to Irish tradition, kissing the Blarney Stone is meant to give one gab and flattery. While the whole thing can be interesting to a history buff, it might not be so much for others. After all, you’re essentially waiting in line to kiss a stone that has had saliva caked to it by millions of others.
Central Tokyo, Japan
It’s central to one of the largest metropolitan areas on the planet. What would you expect from a place like that? You’ve got to deal with packs of crowds and nothing but concrete. While there are some spots worth seeing, you might be better off checking out the suburbs of Ogikubo and Asagaya.
Winston Churchill’s Britain at War Experience, London
Every year, there are thousands of people who come to see this. While we shouldn’t forget what Churchill has done in history, we think this experience isn’t the best way to recognize him. After all, this experience is nothing but a couple of fake mannequins. It’s a real shame because there are several other authentic WWII sites worth looking at.
One such option is Churchill’s bunker, which is not far from this tourist trap.
Dunn’s River Falls, Jamaica
While the falls are beautiful, they’re slightly undermined by the fact there are thousands of people who come through the jungle to see this. Pair that up with lots of cruise ships, tour guides and others can undermine this experience too.
St. Mark’s Square, Venice
Maybe this spot gets a lot of attention since a lot of this town is water and this is the only large body of dry land available. Whatever the reason is though, this place is often crowded with people, as well as pigeons.
Tower of London
Whenever you go to London, this is considered the highlight of the trip but it’s not really the case. This 1,000-year tower was designed to keep people in, but often pushes people away thanks in part to the massive lineups.
If you want a better spot, get some tickets in reserve 2 months in advance. We’d also advise showing up around the time of the Ceremony of the Keys.