With summer upon us, there is no better time to explore which places not to visit this year. A recent online discussion shares experiences that could shape your view of a new destination. Here are some insights.
“When I was in Egypt, a guy once came up to me, showed me where the bathroom was, and asked for a tip for that,” says a former visitor. “I wasn't looking for the bathroom.” Having lived in Egypt, I can sympathize with all complaints. As funny and warm as the locals are, there is constant traffic smog, deafening noise pollution, and endless scams.
“Upon leaving the resort, it was immediately obvious that the place was unsafe for tourists,” shares someone who holidayed on the Caribbean island. “The resort itself was adequate, and we didn't mind staying within the bubble; someone with plans to explore the island was sure to be disappointed, or dead, or both.”
“We left after one night despite having booked for longer,” says someone who stayed in Sihanoukville, Cambodia's favorite tourist spot after Angkor Wat. “Empty, abandoned concrete skyscraper shells and loads of Chinese Triads. Horrible experience.” They should have chosen neighboring Vietnam, where I once lived; it is safer and has far fewer Triads.
“Ireland, but it was entirely my fault,” says a self-admittedly hapless tourist. “I was experimenting with veganism and was abstaining from alcohol at the time. I basically ate soup and drank juice my entire visit — I done goofed!” Come on, who goes to Ireland and lives like a monk? They could have stayed home and done so.
5. Las Vegas, Nevada
“Vegas is a nightmare for me, as an introvert with sensory issues,” comments a thread member with sensory overload issues. “It seemed like everywhere I went, I was listening to two kinds of music at once.” Without trying to sound condescending, Las Vegas is the last place I would visit as an introvert.
6. New Delhi, India
A backpacker was relieved not to lose their leg when their tuk-tuk (a small three-wheeled, covered bike taxi) crashed in the Indian capital. They explain how they moved their leg before impact, saving it from being crushed between the vehicle and a concrete barrier. “The whole side of it crumpled in and needed lifting back onto the road,” says the relieved traveler. “Very frightening.”
7. Brussels, Belgium
“A preteen tried to rob me with a knife in Brussels,” recalls a thread poster who describes a weird situation in which two youths followed him into a liquor store. After he ordered his goods, he became a decoy: “They used me as a distraction to rob the convenience store.” I presume they tried to rob him after this, or is that another event entirely? In any case, don't go to Brussels.
8. Paris, France
With the recent violence rampaging through the French capital, the world looked on and saw scenes they could never have imagined in the past. A tourist recalls an event where a youth pulled him aside and promised to show him a magic trick before tying a string around his wrist and asking for money. “My dad managed to pull me back before his friends could join him,” says the still-shocked young man.
9. Lake Azov, Ukraine
One commenter reveals how a summer spent on the lake one year resulted in a horrifying mosquito experience on a “biblical scale.” Others in the thread concur that a Ukrainian summer is taxing on the skin. “The amount of mosquitoes, especially in forests, is ungodly to the point that you have to wear long-sleeved clothes in the summer,” warns a commenter. “Even then, they manage to sting you through a fairly thick cotton shirt.” Note to self: avoid Lake Azov in Ukraine.
Not many European tourists consider Albania for a summer holiday, though it sits upon pristine, clear seas with mountains and forests. “All the cities are so worn down, and everything is concrete-gray,” says a despairing traveler. “No beautiful old towns like Croatia, Spain, and Italy. Every beach we visited was full of jet ski jerks, water bikes, and garbage.”
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