10 of the Worst Cities To Travel in the United States

Chris Phelan

New Orleans

Nothing beats the feeling of exploring a new city. From the restaurants to the nightlife to the architecture – and everything in between – exploring a new town is at the top of most travelers' to-do lists. However, not all cities are worth the trip! Recently, a group of adventurers converged in an online discussion with one goal: reveal the worst cities to visit in the United States.

1. Detroit, Michigan

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It seems like Detroit has been in a state of rebuilding for decades now. Although the downtown area has been given a facelift, many travelers say all bets are off once you leave downtown.

“Once outside downtown Detroit every street I saw had abandoned homes that looked like there had been a war there,” one man says. “It was disturbing to see a city in such terrible shape. I used to hear people make fun of Detroit and thought they were just exaggerating. Then I saw Detroit for myself. It is truly bad.”

2. New Orleans, Louisiana

NEW ORLEANS, USA - MAY 14, 2015: Bourbon Street in French Quarter with many pedestrians and vehicles. There are a lot bars with neon signs, in the back modern highrises.
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Don't get me wrong, New Orleans is a tourist's haven for debauchery and fun times, and it's a city everybody should visit. However, after you and a group of friends stroll down Bourbon Street once, please do yourself a favor and call it a night. Venturing outside the touristy area is a recipe for getting mugged, harassed, or worse. 

3. San Francisco, California

Father with arms around his family looking at beautiful summer mountains landscape, on hiking trip .Golden Gate Bridge, over Pacific Ocean, San Francisco, California, USA
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Despite its gorgeous landscape and rich history, San Francisco has unfortunately suffered from an increased homeless population problem in recent years.

As a result, the city's beauty has been marred by a large number of vagrants and homeless people, with many visitors admitting to being shocked the first time they visit. The city has vowed to fight this problem, but the unhoused population problem across America seems to be an issue without a clear solution.

4. St. Louis, Missouri

St. Louis, Missouri
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Although generally, the city of St. Louis is safe, the part of town known as East St. Louis lives up to its dangerous reputation. One traveler admits that it is the city he will avoid for the rest of his life. “I will never go within a 100 miles of East St. Louis ever again,” he says. “That's the ‘Purge' right there. No law. No order. Nothing but potential violence and death even in broad daylight.”

5. Provo, Utah

Provo, Utah
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Utah has plenty of breathtaking scenery, which is why it's shocking to read that so many people don't like visiting. Countless travelers complain that despite its beauty, there's nothing to do while you're there. For lack of a better word, Provo is boring – and nobody wants to visit a boring town.

6. Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
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Nicknamed the “City of Brotherly Love,” Philadelphia manages to turn off many visitors due to its high crime rate and rundown neighborhoods.

One woman who recently visited the city didn't give a glowing testimonial, “Philadelphia after dark is a pretty dangerous place where decent people will stop and ask if you are ok and tell you to go home or stop in the nearest bar and get a cab.”

7. Los Angeles, California

Los Angeles, USA
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Many tourists get lured by the bright lights and old Hollywood charm that can only be found in Los Angeles. But, unfortunately, many neighborhoods in Los Angeles aren't what visitors expect: replace bright lights with urban blight and Hollywood charm with dilapidated buildings and a severe homeless population problem that poses obvious challenges for visitors.

8. Baltimore, Maryland

Baltimore, Maryland
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There's been television shows and movies produced based on the level of violence and corruption in Baltimore, so it shouldn't be a surprise that the town makes this list. I have many friends who live in the area, and all of them have given me the same advice: don't walk alone at night. In related news, I'd love it if they moved outside the city, like, yesterday.

9. Seattle, Washington

Seattle, Washington
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When the weather is favorable, travelers are near-unanimous in calling Seattle one of their favorite American cities to visit. However, statistics don't lie. Seattle only enjoys an average of 152 days of sunny weather per year, which means you most likely will be dealing with heavy cloud cover and rainfall whenever you visit this iconic Pacific Northwest town.

10. El Paso, Texas

El Paso, Texas
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Plenty of cities lack imagination, architecture, and passion; El Paso is the most notable. “El Paso, TX struck me as utterly charmless, full of strip malls and truck stops,” one traveler laments. “Plus, the hills surrounding it give one an unpleasant view across the Rio Grande at Juarez, Mexico, for a long time the most violent city in North America.” That description doesn't make you want to visit, does it?

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This thread inspired this post. 

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