12 Biggest Tourist Trap Cities in the World According to Travelers

Spare yourself the embarrassment and shame that comes with self-funded misery. Heed the warnings of tourists who have waded into vacation traps and lived to tell the tale.

1. Cancun, Mexico

While Cancun’s positioning on the thumb of the Yucatan Peninsula makes it convenient for American tourists, that’s precisely the problem. While you surely can have a good time in Cancun, you’ll need to dodge the tourist traps to make it happen.

2. Gatlinburg, Tennessee

As many tourists have found, Gatlinburg has taken an idyllic natural backdrop and theme park-ified it. While magic shows, Elvis impersonators, and Dolly Parton-themed attractions are just what some tourists demand, many find the Gatlinburg experience a bit too hokey to enjoy.

3. Niagara Falls, New York

Niagara Falls’s status as an iconic American attraction has led to ho-hum restaurants gouging customers, mediocre hotels charging an arm and a leg to unwitting tourists, and various cottage industries with little unique to offer.

4. Hollywood, Los Angeles, California

Few good-faith tourist guides will steer you to Hollywood Boulevard. Well-worn stars on a pavement, Angelenos have commented, are not what Hollywood has cracked them up to be.

5. Dubai, United Arab Emirates

You have likely seen the man-made islands, sky-scraping architecture, and Instagram models’ shopping sprees documented on Instagram and other media. Yet, those who have been to Dubai lament that there is little to do once you have taken in the scenery.

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