Imagine this – driving down a highway, miles behind and miles ahead, when suddenly, giant billboards pop up advertising some exciting representation just ahead. Such roadside attractions are not the most innocent means to stretch one’s legs. They could even be a rather nasty ploy to make you spend some bucks on cheesy souvenirs you might not be needing, or on some “historic” site, which might not be at its best! Thus, whether you be on a road trip across the countryside or halting by a city, keep a note of these common traps that do not live quite up to their created hype.


The Observation Deck at the Empire State Building, New York

It might be an exemplary part of New York’s architecture, but it doesn’t mean the city is best viewed from atop. With a massive $42 price to access 86th floor of the building, and furthermore insane $72 to the 102nd, the top deck of the building, it is times better to save your notes and instead, visit the 230 Fifth Rooftop Bar, not far from there, with a similar view, or to the 1 Hotel Brooklyn Bridge’s rooftop, overlooking River East, One World Trade and the Statue Of Liberty a bit distant.



Graceland, Memphis, Tennessee

If you happen to be one of the die-hard fans of Elvis, you may as well get a thrill of his weird Memphis mansion. Entrance to this estate charges you $42.50, while the Elvis Tour for Experience will burn a hole of $63 in your pocket. This tour exhibits his collection of cars, wardrobe and the gold records he possessed. The entirety of this complex feels accurately from Disney, boasting a retro 1950s diner; tourists donning giant iPads close to their necks watching a virtual tour. You may instead want to look out for the Memphis museum of Rock N’ Soul, with times more sensible $13 ticket.



Rockefeller Center Ice Rink, New York

Although it earns a small role in almost every New York City set movie’s winter scene, the Rockefeller Center Ice Rink is actually a hotspot for tourists. Like everywhere in Manhattan, it is excessively packed and all the more expensive. A small session on that ice adding with skate rental costs $38 to adults.



Space Needle, Seattle, WA

Being an already expensive city, you do not need to add $32.50 more to your bills for getting an aerial view of Seattle. Go with that sum to some rooftop bar, from where Space Needle is visible as the background (which is even more impressive than that ‘gram anyway!). Of those we love, one happens to be The Nest, perched atop the Thompson Hotel viewing the Elliott Bay, as well as the Olympic Mountains.



Coca-Cola World, Atlanta, GA

Its recipe may be too secretive, but don’t you think they’ll give away the details during one of your tours. You will be allowed to approach the alleged vault holding the recipe with general admission ticket of $17 for adults, that further makes this choice a pricey stop for a family just to buy some more of the Coke propaganda, or watch the bottling line replica while tasting lots of those sugary drinks. You better keep your pockets sealed, get a coke if you are craving for one, and make better use of those dollars at a tour of the local brewery instead.



St. Ignace Mystery spot, MI

Don’t be confused by the name – there isn’t much of a mystery here. For a tour of the Hockey spot – claimed to cause enigmatic happenings such as lightheadedness, adults are charged $9 and the kids $7. This attraction also possesses mini-golf with a zipline, and a maze (of course for some more cost).



Buffalo Bill Grave and Museum, Golden, CO

Somehow, being here since 1921, it doesn’t mean that this grave is necessarily good. Finding yourself paying $5 for adults just for checking out a sealed bronze casket cased in concrete and further enclosed in a fence to deter theft – there isn’t much there to see, folks!



Area 51 Alien Travel Centre, Amargosa Valley, NV

Along the highway of the Extraterrestrials, or Highway 95 out of Vegas, you’ll come across this strange place masquerading as a travel center. This complex has a gas station with an alien theme, a souvenir shop (for those alien jerkies of you), tattoo parlors, (buckle up) and a brothel! A firework warehouse, as if the warning was not enough, also exits next door.



O.K, Corral, Tombstone, AZ

If you’re not already cringed by the name, Tombstone, Arizona is here with its sleazy reenactments of Wild West to make sure you turn away soon. Paying a fee of $10, you could confront a fake gunfight shootout lasting 30 seconds at O.K Corral, which was a horse corral and livery somewhere around the later part of the 19th century. It has even been debated upon by the Chamber of Commerce of Tombstone if it is a trap.



Crater of Diamonds, Murfreesboro, AR

Tourists are allowed to dig themselves for gemstones at this state park, but when viewed actually, this is but a dirt field spreading across 37 acres where people’s blind searches for treasure goes on since 1906. The chances of finding anything are impossible, but a new wave of hope swept across when in 2019, a schoolteacher luckily found a 3-carat diamond here. Considering the odds, it still is not worth the 5 hour trip from the town of Little Rock plus the $10 fees to enter the mine.



South of the border, Hamer, SC

You’ll know when this place is approaching. With around 175 billboards cringingly advertising this South of the Border, starting from Virginia all the way to Georgia. Originally this stop started as a point for the passersby to pick some beer up, but since 1949, when it opened, it has grown to 350 acres worth of motel rooms; 200-foot observation tower shaped like a sombrero; the Pedroland, which is an oddly named amusement park; a campground for RV; and advertised the America’s largest reptile park.



Fisherman’s Wharf, San Francisco, CA

This Wharf looks more of selling a variant of the city San Francisco and not a genuine sense of that city. What you could expect seeing here are lots of memento shops and seafood restaurants so overpriced that no local person would go to them ever. This area is all about tourist consumer vs someone who genuinely wants to dissolve in the far more attractive culture of the bay area. (Do not forget though to go peeking at Sea Lions near Pier 39.)



Waikiki Beach, Oahu, HI

It might look like a paradise initially, but truth be told, it is just an elongated stretch of chain hotels expensive enough and baking sunburnt bodies perching on those sands. It’ll be better if you avoid those extra-sweet tropical flavored drinks and cheesy Hawaiian shirts. Go to some other more remotely situated island dotting the archipelago, like the Molokai, Kauai, or lanai.



Quincy Market, Boston, MA

This has been called a trap for tourists even by Eater Boston. The Faneuil Hall food court is crowded almost always and has lots of options for food, that are too mediocre, given their high prices. But, there still are some gems therein the dining hall, such as pepperoni slice of Pizzeria Regina’s and Boston Chowda Co.’s clam chowder.



Epcot, Orlando, FL

What you could expect here are a huge number of restaurants themed globally along with as many gift shops. Epcot also has not much to offer when it comes to rides and swings for Disney freaks. A ticket for one day and one park costs an extreme $109 for one person. This is not worthwhile just for a plate of American copies of international foods. The only part exciting about this park is that among the long-lined buildings of the complex, it is the only one selling booze, and that is a kind of a silver lining to it!



“The Thing”, Benson, AZ

From a long distance away, billboards start hyping up this souvenir shop, Dairy Queen and a remotely situated gas station – “The Thing”. Its prime attraction is a museum covering 12000 square feet, displaying taxidermy woven with conspiracies involving dinosaurs and aliens along with some pretty random objects. Prepare afore to give away $5 per person, while for the family – $10, to visit this site.



Santa Claus House, North Pole, AK

This town of North Pole, about a drive of 20 minutes from Fairbanks, keeps the Christmas spirit alive. With names of avenues like Blitzen, Claus Lane, and the Holiday Road, the street lights here too remind about candy canes. The official possession of Santa Claus’ is with St. Nick, it actually is more like a gift shop themed in Christmas tone from where one could get a customizable gift of a letter for $15 from Santa. A deed of the North Pole, which indeed is fake, is also available here for $10.



Beale Street, Memphis, TN

If you want to visit this, do it when it’s time for the Music Festival of Beale Street, occurring each May, and attracting names like The Avett Brothers, Leon Bridges, The Lumineers and Lil Wayne. Apart from this, it is a street in town attracting tourists with its neon lamps and some tipsy tourists that stumble out holding overpriced beers from dive bars.



World’s largest ball of twine, Cawker City, KS

A four-hour drive from Kansas city shall bring you before a notably random sight of a huge twine ball (which is all the more being surprise, contested), but for the people, they still gather in August, adding layers upon layers onto it.



Times Square, New York, NY

You might get drawn towards the numerous sparkling lights of the Times Square if you have never before been to this place. But mind it, this area is for the most avoided by the locals as the cigarette filled sidewalks here are always crowded with tourists touting selfie sticks and costume-clad characters that will try to swindle you for pictures, of course for some price. Also keep off from the people trying to hand out “discount tickets” or flyers for Broadway shows, comedy clubs, etc. They are not worth the deal!



Plymouth Rock, Plymouth, MA

This rock is nothing, but a little rock, on which is stamped the year 1620 when pilgrims stepped on this rock. As it lies fenced with sand all around, the photos too don’t come out as good. Avoiding the shops selling pilgrim paraphernalia and sweatshirts is also recommended.



Corn Palace, Mitchell, SD

The only one corn place left in this world is this one. There were even more of them, in the times when the Midwestern towns built their palaces of corn showing off their skill at cultivating this vital crop. The construction of this building is actually impressive, with every year a mural being added, this photo and gift shop at downtown Mitchell is only to get pictures and return to the highway. You could take a break at Bible Land Park just in front of the street. The palace, though has free entry, but the carnival ride wristbands cost $24.



The Desert of Maine, Freeport, ME

Not even a desert technically, this major-sounding point is just a sand patch actually in the otherwise forest like state. it was caused by some guy who not knows about rotating crops properly. The topsoil eroded with time and he gave up this farm to some other guy who bought it around 1919 for just $1 for an acre. Six years later, this guy opened the farm as a tourist place, and today, this Desert of Maine costs $10 to enter, including a guided tour of 35 minutes.



Four Corners, Arizona, Colorado, New Mexico, UT

This ground with a plaque having been recessed in it would make for a good Instagram, but only if you go into the Twister mode, putting one limb per state. Chances are, though, that there are not many who’ve had this same idea. It is sort of do and show that you did this kind of a thing, but being a tediously long drive distant from any place justifies it as being below average for a photo session. You’ll find yourself paying between $5 and $10 to access this site. Keep away from vendors trying to sell overpriced trinkets.



Bourbon Street, New Orleans, LA

It is undeniable that the French Quarters are beautiful, and that is the reason such huge numbers of people come to New Orleans. Bourbon Street, which is actually the main street road, however, falls into the trapping territory owing to its chains of average restaurants, drunk off crowds, and overpriced bars. If this all is not what you like, you better head towards the St. Claude Avenue or Frenchmen street.



The Strip, Las Vegas, NV

Vegas welcomes you, baby, if you like getting a hole burnt in your pockets. Purposely created casinos, encouraging money spending, The Strip houses the biggest, as well as the most expensive rooms for gaming. An average person, in fact, spends between $200 and $250 in one day in Vegas. The shows here are actually mesmerizing, glamour is there (if you seek), distracting lights are present, but all that with the cost of you dropping some big cash!



Mall of America, Minneapolis, MN

If there isn’t a logical reason with you to do some shopping, there is no compulsion to take an expensive pilgrimage to the Mall of America Shopping Center. It attracts nearly 40 million visitors annually, of which one in every four is tourist coming for its about 520 stores, as well as the Nickelodeon Universe amusement park, costing $38 per wristband.



Atlantic City Boardwalk, Atlantic City, NJ

A plenty of boardwalks are present in the States, the most strange of them being at the Atlantic City. A Ripley’s Believe It Or Not is present on that boardwalk with $17 admission fees for adults. It has for long been the sign of tourist traps nearby, from beach cafes and their underwhelming menus to several souvenir shops.



Wall Drug Store, SD

This is known as a free ice and water home, which probably used to be great before the days of insulated bottles of water, but as of now, this shopping complex themed as cowboys is but a stuff of tourist trap. This 76000 square foot of warehouse has a gift shop as a labyrinth and a drug store, selling $30 worth magnetic map and $10 Black Hills Honey bottle respectively.



Hollywood Walk Of Fame, Los Angeles, CA

A survey performed by the Stasher, that ranks the worst traps for tourists in the world, the Hollywood Walk Of Fame obtained the spot at the bottom, which actually is well deserved by it! Being here, expect yourself to be almost always being surrounded by mediums while you look for the star of your favorite celeb and being jostled by the other tourists doing the same. Still, what you’ll take back home as a picture will be some nasty pavements.