There is nothing worse than arriving at your dream holiday destination to find it is not quite as you imagined, and if the recent survey by social networking site Reddit.com is anything to go by, it seems we should be crossing quite a few famous holiday hotspots off our bucket list!
Reddit asked its voters “What’s the most disappointing tourist destination?” and the Great Pyramid of Giza in Egypt, Stonehenge in England, Los Angeles in the US, Paris in France, Venice in Italy and the Caribbean beach resort of Jamaica all made it to the top of the list.
The Great Pyramid of Giza may be a Seventh Wonder of the World, but according to travellers, it is too close to the city, “visible from Pizza Hut”, and the inside of the central chamber looks like “a cow shed”. Others complained that the constant harassment by local sales men ruined their experience.
Paris didn’t do well in the poll either, mainly due to the unfriendliness of locals towards tourists. One voter branded Paris the “worst city on Earth” while others complained that they couldn’t even order a coffee without disdainful looks from the waiter.
Our very own Stonehenge was branded ‘overrated’, despite attracting more visitors than any other English Heritage site, with voters claiming it was too far from London, smaller than they imagined, and too expensive!
Los Angeles was labelled “a run-down, dangerous and dirty urban sprawl”, Jamaica “a tourist trap” and even Venice didn’t escape the ire of international travellers, with one visitor referring to it as “horribly polluted and filled with garbage”!
While there are some destinations in the world that I wouldn’t rush back to, I can’t say I have ever been truly disappointed with my holiday destination – what about you?
11 Comments Add yours
Been to all of these but Jamaica, and I can see how each might disappoint a first-time visitor. Personally the only one that really let me down was Paris. France, oui. Paris, non!
Thanks Jen! I haven’t been to Paris… It’s on the bucket list so I might need to brush up on my school French! Merci 🙂
Can’t say that I agree with much of that. My trip to the Pyramids and to Stonehenge were magical. I arrived in Giza on a camel and one of the favorite moments of my life was sitting on that camel looking back at the city of Cairo. The horizon was dotted with symbols of both Christianity and Islam, which touched me in ways I can’t describe.
My trip to Stonehenge was decades ago and I hear the site has changed a lot since then, but I remember walking among the stones with the wind whistling among them and it sounded like the voices of the ages telling me secrets.
I think part of the reason people claim they didn’t like a spot is because they are not properly prepared to appreciate what they are looking at. They want to be spoon fed entertainment. They expect Disney rather than colliding destinies. Being a critic is a lot easier than discovering things to appreciate.
Very true Jane. Stonehenge is fenced off now, you cannot walk between the stones. I think that is probably one of the reasons people find it disappointing?
Sums it up pretty well 😉
Thanks for stopping by Herman! 🙂
Afraid `i’d certainly agree about the pyramids. It’s just that you imagine them out in the middle of the dessert and actually they’re just in a dirty suburb of Cairo with people harassing you the whole time.
I’m glad I went but I wouldn’t rave about them and say to people ‘oh you must go’.
Maybe the problem is these places are so hyped up that we expect too much.
I haven’t visited the Pyramids, but I have heard the same from friends who have visited Sarah. It’s a shame they were not protected years ago before the city grew around them…
Sarah M – Maybe that’s it. My trip was during November and we were virtually alone. The only people around were the guards, our guide and my husband. I guess I was just lucky.
I think a lot of it is about timing…tourist hordes can be daunting and unexpected. The first time I went to the Taj Mahal in India I was so surprised to find it just teeming with people – because every photo I’d ever seen of it had NO people in it! The second time I went, years later, I was prepared and so I really enjoyed it (and of course, it is still so magnificent, even with the crowds). I also went to Stonehenge in the days when you could walk among the stones…but I understand what an impact that has on them, with so many people visiting, and they need to be protected. There are many other “standing stone” sites in the UK that are in more remote places (ie, Scotland) that you can still walk among…and it’s magic. Thanks for the thought-provoking post!
I agree! I think sometimes we expect too much, and as a result, we miss the true beauty of what we have come to visit. Glad you enjoyed our post, and thanks for your feedback!