When it comes to travel, many of us dream of exploring iconic landmarks around the world. These famous sites often grace the covers of travel magazines and postcards, enticing us to embark on adventures to witness their beauty firsthand. However, not all “famous” landmarks are created equal. While some are truly awe-inspiring and worth the trip, others may leave you feeling underwhelmed, overcrowded, or disappointed. In this blog, we’ll take a closer look at 10 “famous” landmarks that, for various reasons, may not be worth visiting at all.
- Hollywood Walk of Fame, Los Angeles, USA
The Hollywood Walk of Fame may sound like a must-visit for movie enthusiasts, but in reality, it’s a crowded and somewhat underwhelming experience. The stars embedded in the sidewalk are often covered in footprints and obscured by bustling tourists. Additionally, the area around the Walk of Fame is not the glamorous Hollywood you might imagine, with its share of rundown buildings and street performers.
- The Little Mermaid Statue, Copenhagen, Denmark
Denmark’s Little Mermaid statue, inspired by Hans Christian Andersen’s fairy tale, is certainly a symbol of the city, but its size and simplicity can disappoint visitors. Measuring just 4 feet in height, the statue often leaves tourists expecting something grander. Combine this with the crowds, and you might wonder if the journey was worth it.
- Manneken Pis, Brussels, Belgium
Manneken Pis is a peculiar landmark: a small bronze statue of a boy urinating into a fountain. While it may be a humorous sight, the reality is less exciting than the legend. Tourists often expect a larger and more ornate statue, only to find this unassuming figure drawing large crowds.
- The Blarney Stone, Blarney Castle, Ireland
Kissing the Blarney Stone is said to grant the gift of eloquence, but the process is not for the faint of heart. To reach the stone, you must lean backward over a parapet while someone holds your legs, risking a dizzying drop. Considering the long lines and germ concerns, some travelers might think twice about this particular Irish tradition.
- The Pyramids of Giza, Egypt
The Pyramids of Giza are undoubtedly awe-inspiring, but the experience of visiting them can be less than magical. The site is often overcrowded with tourists and touts, and the surrounding area can be chaotic and polluted. Additionally, the relentless sun and heat can make it a challenging visit.
- The Leaning Tower of Pisa, Italy
The Leaning Tower of Pisa is an architectural marvel, but its tilt, which once resulted from a structural flaw, has now been corrected to prevent its collapse. While this is good news for the tower’s stability, it means that you can no longer take the amusing photos of yourself “holding up” the tower that were once popular.
- Stonehenge, England
Stonehenge is shrouded in mystery and intrigue, but when you arrive, you’ll find yourself at a distance from the stones, separated by ropes and unable to touch or interact with them. This limits the sense of connection and wonder that many travelers hope to experience.
- The Mona Lisa, Louvre Museum, Paris, France
The Mona Lisa is one of the most famous paintings in the world, but the small size of the painting and the large crowds surrounding it can make for a less-than-satisfying viewing experience. You’ll likely spend more time jostling with fellow tourists than actually admiring the artwork.
- The Great Wall of China
The Great Wall of China is an incredible feat of engineering and a UNESCO World Heritage site, but some sections of the wall are extremely crowded with tourists, making it challenging to enjoy the serene beauty of the structure. To truly appreciate the Great Wall, consider visiting less-visited sections or planning your trip during off-peak times.
- The Man-made Island of Palm Jumeirah, Dubai, UAE
Dubai’s Palm Jumeirah is an engineering marvel, but it’s largely made up of luxury resorts and private residences. Access to the island is restricted, and the view from the mainland often suffices for most tourists. Spending time and money to visit this artificial island may not be the best use of your resources.
While these landmarks may be famous, they may not always live up to the hype. Travel is a personal experience, and what you find worthwhile or underwhelming can vary greatly from person to person. Before embarking on your next adventure, research thoroughly and consider your personal preferences and interests to ensure that the famous landmarks you choose to visit align with your expectations and travel goals.