7 European Attractions Now Ruined by Tourists
Europe is one of the most culturally diverse continents in existence – with a history which was forged thanks to the super-human efforts of ancient societies.
However, while some of these sights are still a wonder to behold, others have sadly been sullied somewhat by the hordes of tourists who frequent the area on a daily basis. Today, let’s take a look at seven such locations.
Stonehenge – England
The wonderful Stone Henge in England. Ruined by the tourism industry
Stonehenge might not be the most adrenaline-pumping of locales in the first place (and, in truth, a lot of people often include it as a spot worth avoiding if you’re traversing England), but what mysticism it once had has now been well and truly ruined by the general public.
While there was at least some enjoyment to be had from basking in the glory of the ancient druid ritual spot, the crowds of people there now detract from that considerably.
A myriad of different accents and noise really harms the ambience – and with the stones themselves located a good 300-metres away, you aren’t in for a very good time.
Vatican City – Italy
This spot serves as the final port of call for Christians as they take part in a mini-pilgrimage across the holy city of Rome.
The Vatican itself technically counts as its own country, with an estimated population of just 1,000 people. Despite that, as many as 25,000 people visit the mini-nation every day – totting up to over 5 million a year.
There isn’t much room for movement to begin within the Vatican, so it’s probably no shock this excess tourism makes things a little too overcrowded.
Mona Lisa – France
The great museum that is Le Louvre is now ruined by the tourism industry.
You’re probably well aware of the world renown painting by Leonardo da Vinci – made famous because of the trademark smile his model possesses.
However, if you want to get up-close and personal look at what is arguably the most historic portrait in existence, you might be disappointed.
There are so many tourists in this one room of the Louvre trying to get a gawk at the world’s most famous portrait that you’ll never get anywhere near close enough to appreciate it. As one of the world’s seven most disappointing attractions, we wouldn’t add it to our list.
Parthenon – Greece
Built as a temple to the goddess Athena in the fifth century BC, the Parthenon was once the crowning glory of the Acropolis.
While the decay it has experienced over the years is largely thanks to the elements, tourism has also played a significant part in its continued lack of appeal.
People have been known to graffiti on the temple itself, while others have been found breaking off tiny chunks and taking them home as a souvenir.
Eiffel Tower – France
This iron structure famous around the world. The Eiffel Tower, is now ruined by the tourism industry.
A bit like Stonehenge, the Eiffel Tower isn’t exactly an incredible sight to check out in the first place – but what is there is only made worse by the densely packed crowds.
Sure, you get a lovely view of Paris from the top of the tower, but it isn’t really worth it to put up with being crammed into tiny spaces with strangers.
Colosseum – Italy
Italy, and Rome, make a second appearance on our list, in the form of the original playground of destruction; the Colosseum.
The stadium has a long and illustrious history. “When completed in A.D. 80, the arena held 50,000 spectators who watched mythology-based dramas and re-enactments of land and sea battles.”
You can expect to see a similar volume of people turn up every day at the amphitheatre in the 21st century. This has resulted in the original charm of the Roman structure being somewhat dampened by commercial tourism.
London – England
The city of London, which sees millions of tourists a year.
We don’t like to generalise, but the entire city of London is certainly an area which suffers from overcrowding – thanks both to its inhabitants and the tourists who regularly travel there every day.
Anyone who’s been on a London tube at rush hour knows there is a serious problem when it comes to personal space. If you want the freedom to breath at all times, London is probably the last place you’ll want to visit.
You’d do well to avoid these seven European attractions the next time you’re on holiday. Make sure to bear them in mind when you’re planning a future journey.
This is a guest post. Isabel Leong, travel writer. Visit her website at belaroundtheworld.com