Woman hugging herself.

Love at First Tourist Trap. 15 Tourist Traps That Stole Vacationers’ Hearts

There’s nothing like a classic tourist trap, from overpriced souvenirs to tacky decor. People took to the internet to share the quirky spots they love to hate at popular destinations across the globe. 

Note: Some quotes in this piece have been lightly edited for grammar.

1: French Quarter, New Orleans

Old buildings in New Orleans.
Photo Credit: Depositphotos.

Even locals love the French Quarter’s ever-present vibrancy. “Royal Street’s antique shops, café au lait, and beignets at Café du Monde, music literally everywhere. There’s a reason it’s a tourist destination!” Another commenter sings its praises, “It’s cheesy, it’s touristy, there’s bad behavior. It’s got so much character. I just love it.”

2: Hofbrauhaus, Munich

Beer at Hofrauhaus.
Photo Credit: Bernadett via stock.adobe.com.

This German tourist trap had one commenter saying it was the most fun night of their life. “I drank humongous beers and danced with random people from all over the world.” You can even bring the family along, “Giant beer, good sausages, and pretzels the size of your head. My entire family loved it. “

3: Blue Lagoon, Iceland

Blue Lagoon in Iceland.
Photo Credit: Blue Planet Studio via stock.adobe.com.

This perfectly Instagrammable spot draws in tourists like flies, but it’s still totally worth it. One tourist said it was “amazing in their book,” and 1K people upvoted it to agree with them. 

4: Pike Place Market, Seattle 

Pike Place Market, Seattle.
Photo Credit: Scottiebumich via stock.adobe.com.

Even though it has some gimmicks, many still appreciate how the Pike Place Market uplifts the Seattle community. “I have so many fond memories throughout my life of being there. It is a tourist trap, but it is still a working market with local products that are purchased by locals.”

5: Buc-ee’s, Southern US

Buc-ee's entrance.
Photo Credit: Joni via stock.adobe.com.

One commenter described Buc-ee’s as a “massive gas station on steroids” and the only thing worth going to Texas for. “If Walmart had a baby with Sheetz or Wawa and Cracker Barrel. Still some damn fine brisket and the Buc-ee nuggets…” You truly have to see this place to believe it. 

6: Pier 39, San Francisco 

Pier 39, San Francisco.
Photo Credit: Jeff Whyte via stock.adobe.com.

Pier 39 and its iconic (and loud) sea lions garnered a lot of adoring comments from fans. “I love organizing stopovers in San Francisco when I fly because I love hanging out at Pier 39 and visiting the sea lions. I know the place is a tourist trap, but I don’t care.”

7: Just Like the Movies 

Boats in Venice.
Photo Credit: Depositphotos.

Many commenters considered the whole city of Venice a tourist trap, but they love it nonetheless. “I took the train from Florence, and upon exiting the station’s doors, the Grand Canal was unveiled in front of me in perfect late afternoon light. Churches, palazzi, gondolas, and the water all right there. I had just seen The Talented Mr. Ripley, so to see the city in person was just magical.”

8: Eiffel Tower, Paris 

Eiffel Tower in Paris.
Photo Credit: Depositphotos.

One of the world’s most iconic landmarks is a must-see destination for a reason. “Every single time I see the Eiffel Tower, I have this unreal ‘OMG, I can’t believe I am in Paris!’ moment. I have been fortunate enough to travel to many cool places but never get that awestruck moment consistently anywhere else.”

9: Times Square, New York City

Times Square.
Photo Credit: Hackman via Depositphotos.

Bright signs and shops galore, what’s not to love about the US capital of consumption? “Times Square is probably considered the #1 tourist trap on the planet, but like… if you were visiting New York for the first time, I don’t know why you would not go to Times Square.”

10: Roswell, New Mexico

Alien parking in Roswell, New Mexico.
Photo Credit: spiritofamerica via stock.adobe.com.

If you want to believe, the alien-centric city of Roswell will delight. “Loved every second of the tourist trap. Even the McDonald’s is built like a 90s UFO… best ‘fakation’ I’ve ever been on.”

11: World’s Largest Dinosaur, AB, Canada 

Photo Credit: Jeff Whyte via stock.adobe.com.

$5 will snag you a unique photo op at this Canadian spot. “In Drumheller, AB (dinosaur capital of the world, really cool place in general), there’s a ‘world’s largest dinosaur’ statue that’s the epitome of a tourist trap. I can’t even explain why I enjoyed it so much. It was so stupid and yet weirdly fun.”

12: Niagara Falls, Canada

Water rushing over a cliff at Niagara Falls.
Photo Credit: Depositphotos.

Despite many comments about the neverending string of casinos, Niagara Falls and surrounding areas are still hot spots for travelers. “Clifton Hill is great for a day of cheesy entertainment, and there are some great restaurants. It’s a great way to relax and have fun.” 

13: Riverwalk, San Antonio, TX

San Antonio riverwalk.
Photo Credit: Depositphotos.

Stroll along San Antonio’s Riverwalk for scenic paths with lots of “trinket shops, mediocre restaurants, and little ‘museums.'” Commenters enjoy the people watching more than anything. “There are all sorts of people walking around: cowboys in for agriculture conferences, foreign tourists, cholos, old cranky people… I absolutely love it.”

14: Pigeon Forge/Gatlinburg, Tennessee 

Pigeon Forge.
Photo Credit: Joe Hendrickson via stock.adobe.com.

Anyone who’s driven through Pigeon Forge can envision the endless line of wacky buildings and overpriced entertainment on both sides of the road. Unsurprisingly, it got a shoutout on this list as “redneck tourist heaven.” 

15: The Entire City of Las Vegas 

Las Vegas sign.
Photo Credit: Depositphotos.

Let’s be honest; we’ve all dreamed of a wild night in Vegas once or twice. “Say what you want, and yeah, it’s tacky and trashy, but Vegas can definitely be a fun time. Plus, there’s tons of natural beauty around the city if that’s what you’re looking for.”

Source: Reddit

So Overrated

Confused person.
Photo Credit: Depositphotos.

So, what overrated tourist destinations are truly overrated? According to disappointed tourists, these destinations don’t live up to their hype.

20 Most Overrated Tourist Destinations, According to Travelers

15 “Forgotten” US Cities

Group of friends.
Photo Credit: Depositphotos.

New York City and Los Angeles, be gone. These are the most forgotten U.S. cities that Americans want fellow citizens and foreigners to visit.

15 “Forgotten” U.S. Cities That Americans Urge Tourists to Visit

17 Embarrassing American Tourist Stereotypes

American holding an American flag and a brown suitcase.
Photo Credit: Depositphotos.

Let’s face it: American travelers can be embarrassing. Find out if you’re guilty of falling into these embarrassing American tourist stereotypes.

Foreigners Spill the Beans on the 17 Annoying Signs They’re Dealing With an American Tourist

15 Most Charming Small Southern Towns

A traveler couple with a map.
Photo Credit: Depositphotos.

From beautiful architecture to beach getaways and mom-and-pop shops serving local food, these small southern towns give Americans a refreshing break from their busy routines.

15 Most Charming Small Southern Towns in the US to See Before You Croak

The Secret to Never Paying an ATM Fee Abroad (It Works!)

Money inside a ripped jean pocket.
Photo Credit: Depositphotos.

Americans are missing out on the easy trick to landing free ATM withdrawals in over 200 countries. Are you one of them? Domestic travelers in the U.S. can save hundreds of dollars on ATM fees too.

How to Never Pay an ATM Fee Abroad Again

About The Author

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top