There are many articles written about how to be a traveller rather than a tourist, but in the drive to be ‘cool’ are you missing out on the very things that make travel fun? When travelling on holiday, the reality is that no one knows you and checking out some of the more cheesy travel experiences shouldn’t be mocked. So, here are five of our favourites – feel free to add your own.
1. Holding up the Leaning Tower of Pisa (or squashing the Eiffel Tower in between your thumb and finger)
Holiday snaps should be as much about having fun as they are about creating beautiful memories. A corny pic taken at the right angle can invoke as many memories as a truly spectacular sunrise. You may have to queue to get a pic without another tourists trying to do the same, but it will give you time to consider how to be creative with your cheesy snap.
2. Overpriced cocktail with souvenir glass
This is where you have plenty of choice. From a Singapore Sling at Raffles Long Bar to a cocktail of your choice in a glass that resembles Toronto’s CN Tower – who doesn’t love an expensive cocktail with a glass that you have to wrap with four feet of bubble wrap to get home safely, only to never look at it again? Seriously though, there’s a reason why these cocktails are so popular – because it’s just a fun thing to do. And if you’re on a tight budget, give buying the commemorative glass a miss and take a photo instead.
3. A gondola ride in Venice (or in the Venetian Hotel if you can only make it to Las Vegas)
The first time I saw a family sailing past in a gondola while I sat on the palazzo and sipped my late afternoon drink – I thought to myself “how cheesy is that?” I was soon brought back to earth when I remembered that I was indeed sitting in a café in the Venetian in Las Vegas – a city where cheesy is king! While the original version in Italy may be a tad cooler, it can also be a little crowded and smelly in the summer – sometimes artificial isn’t so bad.
4. A pint of Guinness at the Temple Bar
Undoubtedly Dublin’s best known and busiest tourist bar, don’t expect to get much change from $10 when ordering a pint of the black stuff. And don’t expect to get much craic from the locals either, as very few either frequent or work in such tourist hotspots. However, they do say that Guinness tastes the best in Dublin, where the water used to brew it comes direct from the Liffey!
5. Snorkelling along the Great Barrier Reef
As beautiful and mesmerizing as the Great Barrier Reef can be, the reality is that the parts that are accessible for snorkelling are, without doubt, over-crowded. Given that just about every tour company takes you to the same pontoon, you won’t exactly get to feel at one with nature as you swim past yet another snorkelling tourist. However, as the reef is dying at an incredible rate, it may be your one and only chance to meet Nemo face-to-face – just be sure to book an ethical and sustainable tour company.