The most popular tourist destinations aren’t always to the liking of all travellers. In Paris, Montmartre is ranked as the most overrated place in the French capital, while in the UK’s capital, the experience on the London Eye Ferris wheel has left some tourists cold.
France is on track to once again claiming the title of most popular destination in the world in 2025, welcoming 93.7 million visitors and taking the crown from its neighbour Spain, according to the latest statistics from GlobalData. But this popularity doesn’t guarantee that all visitors will leave delighted with their stay. It’s probably happened to you — a destination, hotel or monument you had dreamed of didn’t live up to your expectations and left you disappointed. While rankings of the best places to visit in the world come thick and fast, inspiring the future getaways of many readers, they don’t guarantee the satisfaction of travellers.
Therein lies the interest in using reviews on platforms like Tripadvisor or consulting opinions of previous customers, as one can find on Booking.com. Such opinions were also essential in establishing the methodology of this rather unique study coming out of the UK and revealed by King Casino Bonus.
How to spot potentially disappointing sites
A statistical calculation was made by dividing five- and four-star ratings by the one- to three-star ratings of the tourist places reviewed by users on Tripadvisor. Places rated between one and three stars were indeed considered disappointing. To perfect the algorithm, terms present in the comments were taken into account, such as “very disappointing” or “not as nice as expected.” In total, more than 1,700 tourist attractions were scrutinised, based on the 85 most popular cities, a list put together using data from rankings such as Euromonitor and the Global Destination Cities Index.
And ultimately, the places that this study refers to as the most overrated places in the world correspond to highly popular and repeatedly recommended destinations.
In Bangkok, the most visited city in the world, according to a ranking from last year, Khao San Road, where many young travellers get together to party and eat a quick pad thai, is at the top of the most disappointing tourist places.
Paris, the second-most visited city in the world, appears in the ninth position of most overrated cities. And against all odds, it is Montmartre that disappoints visitors the most. Several commenters noted that they felt pressured or unsafe in this very touristy area.
Meanwhile in London, the iconic London Eye tourist wheel, which allows visitors to contemplate the British capital from a high vantage point, disappoints visitors, according to this analysis.
It’s worth keeping in mind that the data being analysed is by nature subjective. And the company providing the ranking notes that: “All analyzed reviews are biased, highly subjective and based on personal preferences of the reviewers. It should be noted that all the online reviews analyzed are biased, highly subjective and based on the personal preferences of the reviewers.”
Travellers may sometimes idealize certain destinations or monuments, such as the famous Japanese statue of a dog in front of Tokyo’s iconic Shibuya intersection, ranked tenth. While some visitors may be disappointed by its small size, it’s the story behind it that can console them. And for that, a tour guide becomes essential to know that this monument recalls the unprecedented link between a dog, named Hachiko, and his deceased master who waited for him every day at Shibuya station for almost a decade!
Here are the ten most overrated cities and their most overrated attractions in the world:
Bangkok (Thailand)/Khao San Road
T+L recommends: Soi Nana China Town, where a cluster of hidden gem bars serve up quality pours in unpretentious and highly Instagrammable settings. The short walk to the street food haven of China Town is an added plus.
Must-visit bars: Teens of Thailand, Ba Hao, Tep Bar
Antalya (Turkey)/Water Planet Aqua Park
T+L recommends: Kayaking over the sunken city of Kekova, a day trip from the city of Fethiye.
T+L recommends: Singapore Botanic Gardens, the rooftop of Marina Bay Sands, the National Gallery Singapore, Night Safari, Kampong Glam, and Keong Saik (for cafes and restaurants in heritage shophouses)
Munich (Germany)/Deutsches Museum
T+L recommends: One of the three Pinakotheken; for foodies, get Bavarian food at Viktualienmarkt and go down to Isar for a picnic with friends.
Rimini (Italy)/Fiabilandia amusement park
T+L recommends: The beaches of Rimini
Miami (United States)/Calle Ocho in the Little Havana neighbourhood
T+L recommends: Espanola Way, Perez Art Museum, Design District, Wynwood, Ocean Drive for Art Deco buildings, South Beach, and Phillip and Patricia Frost Museum of Science
Mumbai (India)/Juhu Beach
T+L recommends: Aksa beach, Kala Ghoda, hiking or trekking the many trails
London (United Kingdom)/London Eye
T+L recommends: The West End, London’s answer to Broadway, but seeped in much more history; definitely worth catching a play here. Covent Gardens for dining and shopping, Borough market, Natural History Museum, Kew Gardens, Portobello Road in Notting Hill, The Kyoto garden in Holland Park, Carnaby Street and Brick Lane.
T+L recommends: St-Germain, Marché des Enfants Rouges, Luxembourg Gardens, Les Catacombes, Le Marais,
Sacré-Cœur Basilica and Île Saint-Louis
Tokyo (Japon)/Hachiko at Shibuya crossing
T+L recommends: Shimokitazawa
This story is published via AFP Relaxnews.
(Hero image credit: Chan Lee/Unsplash; Feature image credit: Image credit: Lucia Hatalova/Unsplash)
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