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What places have you visited that you thought was overrated?

Travel Forums General Talk What places have you visited that you thought was overrated?

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1. Posted by Teoni (Respected Member 490 posts) 11w Star this if you like it!

And in the same vein where have you visited that you thought is highly underrated and either doesn't get the attention it deserves or gets a bad rap despite being actually quite good?

2. Posted by Andrew Mack (Full Member 200 posts) 11w 1 Star this if you like it!

IMO the most overrated would be Paris.
Yes it is a must visit city once but I cannot understand why people go back a second+ time.
I've friends (From the UK) that have been there a dozen times but haven't visited Nice, Toulouse, Koln, Hamburg, Berlin, Munich, Lisbon, Prague etc etc etc.
Once you've seen the sights there, there's little else that's special.

Underrated would probably be Malaysia as a whole country.
It's not really the best at anything but it's really good at everything that I like.

I've friends that hated KL (and by association they now dislike Malaysia) and friends that love Paris, and they're welcome to their opinion.

3. Posted by bex76 (Moderator 3909 posts) 11w Star this if you like it!

I thought Bruges was very overrated and I was really disappointed with it; although it's quite pretty so are loads of places! I cut my time short there and went back to Ghent instead which I thought was far more pleasant and interesting.

I've just come back from a week of hiking in Gran Canaria. The scenery was spectacular and we saw few other hikers. We also visited several lovely, picturesque little villages in the mountains and had some great food. Gran Canaria, and the other Canaries, get a really bad rep because of the proliferation of resorts there which is what most people associate the islands with.

4. Posted by bex76 (Moderator 3909 posts) 11w Star this if you like it!

Quoting Andrew Mack

Underrated would probably be Malaysia as a whole country.
It's not really the best at anything but it's really good at everything that I like.

I agree! I spent a month there and loved it; I'm planning on going back a second time next year to Borneo, which was a part I didn't see last time.

5. Posted by zzlangerhans (Respected Member 56 posts) 11w Star this if you like it!

Agree completely with Paris being overrated. Most of the sights are concentrated in the center such that the entire area is packed with tourists and has all the atmosphere of a theme park. They've allowed the Quartier Latin to be completely overrun with creperies and cheap tourist restaurants so that it has retained zero historical character. The Louvre is absolutely awful - a throbbing mass of humanity that ultimately only cares about being photographed in front of the Mona Lisa. The Eiffel Tower is nothing but a time waste. Most restaurants won't let you eat without a reservation even if they're empty, and the ones you can walk into are usually mediocre at best. Even the snooty ones are hit or miss. If you're not interested in standing on line for an hour or hours to check off the tourist sights there's very, very little to do. The markets are weak and overpriced and the ethnic neighborhoods are grim. There's an infinitely better and more energetic market in the relatively tiny town of Versailles a half hour away.

There are many other over-touristed cities in Europe such as London, Rome, Florence, and Venice but each has its own redeeming features that make them worthwhile to visit. Paris has Montmartre and Le Jardin du Luxembourg and little else.

Some other places that I think punch below their rep are Chicago, Athens, Dubrovnik, Tel Aviv.

The most underrated place is unquestionably Puerto Rico. People who haven't been there, or only on cruise ships, think of it in terms of pina coladas in resorts, crime and poverty everywhere else. In fact, old San Juan is one of the most beautiful cities I've ever seen with amazing international restaurants. The inner part of the island provides the opportunity for one of the all-time great road trips, with tiny atmospheric villages nestled in the central mountain range. The southern coast is great for laid-back exploration, sport fishing, and other water activities while the west coast is all about surfer and hippie lifestyle. Then there's the smaller, idyllic islands of Vieques and Culebra with countless activities of their own. Great food is everywhere.

Other places off the tourist path that are more than worth checking out: Nicaragua, Tobago, Morocco, Puglia, Slovenia.

6. Posted by Piecar (Travel Guru 1074 posts) 11w Star this if you like it!

I find New York City inexplicably overrated. It's a city. There are good parts and bad parts, but it's just a city. This is not to say that I think it not worthy of visiting. Just not The World's Greatest CIty.

I agree about Paris. Lots of history there, but most of the city is pretty average. Still, I don't say it's not worthy of visiting.

After five minutes of watching the blinking cursor, the only other place I could think of was Vancouver. My hometown.
As I've travelled, I've seen plenty of Sunday supplements touting this city as the greatest thing. Fact is that it's way too expensive, not very attractive, crappy music and arts scene. No history. If you took the city, exactly as it was, and plopped it any where but the coast line it's on, no one would go there. The nature AROUND Van is great. Van is not.

Wait, wait.....Then there's Venice. I think Venice would be a great city to visit...except that there are hundreds of thousands of other visitors there EVERY DAY. Venice, if were just it's denizens, would be great. Just too many people. And since the city is a warren of tiny winding streets, they are all squished together. Rovinj was more enjoyable to me. They need to limit tourism to that sinking island somehow.

And keep it down about Slovenia. It's such a mellow cool place because everyone forgets it's there. I'm sure you've had this conversation: "Then I went to Slovenia." "Slovakia?" "No. Slovenia." It has it's own camouflage. Except for Melania. She's gonna ruin it.

[ Edit: Edited on 04-Mar-2018, at 10:09 by Piecar ]

7. Posted by Borisborough (Moderator 961 posts) 11w Star this if you like it!

Interesting - I love Paris and London too. I went through Rome, Athens and Florence for the first time a few months ago and found each one to have so much to see. But I definitely agree about the crowds although they are there because of the reputation of the destination.

The one place I found this time which I do think is under-rated is San Marino - a great place to spend a few days and brilliant views (but again, the crowds might eventually spoil it).

Bex, Borneo is terrific for wildlife. Have at least one night at Bako NP near Kuching for the silver leaf monkeys and the proboscis monkeys, Sepilok is almost a guaranteed orang utan spot, the Kinabatangan River is brilliant, a climb up Mt Kinabalu is not too strenuous (assuming it's still possible to do) and, if you have time, a flight in and out of Mulu is worth it too.

8. Posted by Beausoleil (Travel Guru 556 posts) 11w Star this if you like it!

I think London is very overrated. It is big, busy, noisy, crowded and often wet. They charge to go in churches and let you in the museums free which seems backwards. The parks are nice and I'm glad we've visited a couple times, but have no plans to return.

On the other hand, I love Paris and have been there well more than a dozen times and will return. The city museums are interesting and free (and uncrowded), you can get in the Louvre without standing in line if you do a little research, there are so many museums you can visit one a day for 6 months without duplication and once away from tourist heaven, the neighborhoods are utterly charming. There are hidden parks all over the city and markets in each district. We've never had trouble eating in a restaurant without a reservation nor finding excellent food at a reasonable price. The people we've met there have been helpful and friendly and more than willing to share things in their city that they enjoy and subsequently we have too. Must admit we've never gone up the Eiffel Tower and probably won't but enjoy seeing it from afar as we walk around the city. The churches are stunning and most have excellent music available, much of it for free. Most of all, I love the fact that you aren't dwarfed by huge tall buildings like you are in London, New York, Chicago or other large cities. I like all the art, trees and seeing the sky. To me that is magic in a large city.

Underrated: I'd choose Bavaria. It seems to be thought of as Oktoberfest and nothing else. What a shame. Bavaria is one of the cleanest, friendliest places we've been. There are ancient villages, churches and monasteries and beautiful countryside and you don't even need to go into Munich for a wonderful visit.

9. Posted by Andrew Mack (Full Member 200 posts) 11w Star this if you like it!

Quoting Beausoleil

Underrated: I'd choose Bavaria. It seems to be thought of as Oktoberfest and nothing else.

In Europe, I'd agree. It's a beautiful part of Europe.
Munich is at its very worse during Oktoberfest, which is now just a tourist trap.
Anyone wanting to visit a 'beerfest' would be wiser to visit one of the smaller VolksFests outside Munich, which are far nicer.

10. Posted by greatgrandmaR (Travel Guru 651 posts) 11w Star this if you like it!

I like London. I haven't been to Paris in quite some time. Venice in the early spring is nice. I have only changed planes there, but I suspect Cancun is an overrated place. That's why I have not been. I really like Cozumel however even though it is over-run with cruise ship passengers during the day. I think Los Angeles is also over rated. If you took away the movie business it would just be a sprawling city.

A very underrated place is San Jose Costa Rica. Everyone tells you to stay away from the city, but it has some amazing museums which would add greatly to understanding the country. I also think that Talin doesn't get enough attention from tourists.

I think San Juan Puerto Rico suffers from having one foot on the boat and one on the shore (Spanish/USA). It's part of the US, but not really.

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