Fueled by high expectations and substantial investments of time and money, journeys to dream destinations can sometimes lead to disappointment when they fail to live up to our idealized visions. A user asked the forum, “What was the most disappointing, tourist-infested place you’ve ever been?”. Here are the top responses.


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“Nassau, Bahamas. It was like being in a very expensive prison.”


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“The room with the Mona Lisa in it.

Couldn’t get anywhere near it, and it’s not that big of a painting to see from the back of the room when all the people in front of you had giant cameras. Maybe it’s better in the age of cell phone cameras – but I doubt it.”


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“The Leaning Tower of Pisa.

A field of tourists trying to take a picture of the tower without other tourists in it and souvenir shops trying to sell those tourist’s stuff.”


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“Every cruise ship port in the Caribbean.”


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“My own city in the last ten years. Amsterdam really took a nosedive. Lots of unique little shops disappeared in favor of approx. Ten million frozen yogurt/chocolate waffle stores. Tourists used to be a few chill, cherry groups interested in the city they were in – now they sometimes look like hordes of zombies hobbling from one tourist trap to the other. Painstakingly slowly, and of course, taking up the whole sidewalk.

EDIT: Just to clarify, I still love and appreciate my city and think it’s well worth the visit. As a matter of fact, I would like to see MORE tourists who actually visit Amsterdam FOR Amsterdam – its architecture, history, culture, etc. Instead of hopping from one chain store to the next or acting crazy because one thinks one can do anything and everything in this “free city”

Amsterdam can still offer a great time but make sure to prepare properly so you can avoid the tourist traps that bloat the city-scape and have out-competed the independent shops that gave my city its unique character.

I posted my comment in the context of having lived here my whole life: Amsterdam now often feels disappointing to me, specifically because I can compare it to the way it was 10-15 years ago and it’s unfortunately just not the same.”


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“Venice in August, I felt bad being there. Luckily, it was only a day trip, but it was like something from a horror film.”


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“The Sistine Chapel. It was incredible to see in person, but it was literally shoulder-to-shoulder with people, and they were trying to usher everyone through as fast as possible, so I felt like I was in the way and couldn’t stay long. I would have loved to just gaze quietly at the ceiling and take it all in for several minutes, but that wasn’t an option.”


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“The Little Mermaid statue in Copenhagen was…underwhelming. To be fair, though, I shouldn’t really have expected to be whelmed by a little mermaid statue.”


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“Oxford Street, Central London. The place for you if you enjoy:

Claustrophobic levels of crowding, overpriced/borderline fraudulent retail, traffic that barely moves, groups of roadmen/hood teens everywhere.”


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“Niagara Falls, overrun during the summer. The Ontario side is the tackiest of tourist destinations; the NY side is a great place to get shot in the face.”


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“Las Ramblas in Barcelona, what a pickpocket paradise!”


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“Any tourist destination in Bali. Beautiful place, amazing food, stunning vistas, friendly people, but the pushy salespeople on the street outside every tourist destination trying to extract every rupiah I had for tourist knick-knacks ruined a lot of the good vibe.”


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“Never go to the Van Gogh “immersive experience” — it’s the biggest bit of malarkey I’ve ever paid $50 for. You’re trapped inside a blurry, underwhelming PowerPoint presentation where the art is not even presented logically, and the music is just not interesting.”


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“Cabo San Lucas. It’s certainly pretty, and the tourists aren’t the problem; it’s that you can’t go anywhere in town or on the beaches without being constantly hounded by people trying to sell you stuff.”


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“I’ve been to Las Vegas twice, and both have been very underwhelming.

Everything is basically a giant fake tourist trap that tries to imitate real-world locations, with slot machines stuffed everywhere up to the eyeballs, manned by fat old people trying to spend away their life savings.

Clubs were fun, but the rest is a solid 6/10.”


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“The Disney parks in Orlando, we paid an absolute fortune for tickets, but the place was so overcrowded it just wasn’t fun.”

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