World’s most disappointing tourist attractions

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A poll of thousands of travellers has painted the Mona Lisa in a particularly dour light, with perhaps the world’s most popular painting earning a new reputation as the world’s most disappointing tourist attraction, according to the easyJet survey.

Now, that’s no knock on the painting itself – it is indeed a masterpiece – but many lining up for hours to catch a glimpse of the tiny trademark piece by Leonardo Da Vinci are bound to be disappointed.

I’m an art lover, but even I admit there are very few paintings in the world that I would bother spending the better part of a morning queueing to see (though I’d still probably line up to see the Mona Lisa). Not everyone is a sucker for fine art. And for those who read this and decide against one day lining up to see the half-smiling diva, well, fewer people in the line in front of me …

The easyJet poll asked 2000 Britons for their take on the world’s most disappointing and most desirable tourist attractions.

Leonardo’s painted lady topped the list as the most disappointing attraction, with 86 per cent of respondents calling the famous portrait a “let down”.

Berlin’s Checkpoint Charlie was close behind with 84 per cent and, in third, was Manneken Pis – a bronze statue of a naked boy in Brussels – on 80 per cent of the vote.

Moulin Rouge in Paris, and Copenhagen’s Little Mermaid statue rounded out the top five.

The five most desirable attractions were the Northern Lights (Iceland), Lake Como (Italy), Santorini (Greece), the Alps (Switzerland) and the Pink Sand Beach at Elafonissi (Greece).

Mind you, these assessments were made by the same people responsible for the following statistic. Nearly one in three (32 per cent) of those surveyed said getting the perfect Instagram pic was a priority for their holidays.

So, take that as you will …

“As people’s attention turns to booking their summer holidays, our research shows they’re turning to social media not only to showcase their travels, but to inspire their next adventure in the first place,” head of digital experience at easyJet Daniel Young told Independent.


Top 10 disappointments

  1. Mona Lisa, Paris
  2. Checkpoint Charlie, Berlin
  3. Manneken Pis, Brussels
  4. Moulin Rouge nightclub, Paris
  5. The Little Mermaid statue, Copenhagen
  6. Eiffel Tower, Paris
  7. Spanish Steps, Rome
  8. Trevi Fountain, Rome
  9. Louvre, Paris
  10. Leaning Tower of Pisa, Italy


Top 10 most desirable sights

  1. Northern Lights, Iceland
  2. Lake Como, Italy
  3. Santorini, Greece
  4. Alps, Switzerland
  5. Pink Sand Beach, Elafonissi, Greece
  6. Cinque Terre, Italy
  7. Acropolis and Parthenon, Athens
  8. Coliseum, Rome
  9. Tulip fields, Netherlands
  10. Benagil sea cave, Portugal

Have you been to or seen any of the attractions listed above? Do you agree with the Brits’ assessment?

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Written by Leon Della Bosca

Leon Della Bosca is a voracious reader who loves words. You'll often find him spending time in galleries, writing, designing, painting, drawing, or photographing and documenting street art. He has a publishing and graphic design background and loves movies and music, but then, who doesn’t?



Total Comments: 10
  1. 0

    They are all within easy reach of the UK. While I agree with the least desirable the most desirable is restricted by the limited exposure to travel they have experienced.

  2. 0

    They are all within easy reach of the UK. While I agree with the least desirable the most desirable is restricted by the limited exposure to travel they have experienced.

  3. 0

    It would be great if you gave a list of places in Australia.

  4. 0

    Well, the leaning tower still attracts hordes of tourists. Despite the perceived disappointment, it was where Gallileo conducted his experiments determining that objects of different masses accelerated at the same rate due to gravity. Thus the historical and scientific importance. Understanding the historical relevance adds to the visual experience.

  5. 0

    Where’s MICK, he ‘s been everywhere in the world?

  6. 0

    Did get to see the Mona Lisa. Managed to force my way through throngs of mostly Asian tourists to get a reasonable pic. May be famous but there a indeed much more impressive paintings in the “LOO”.
    Gotta admit I wouldn’t bother going back there, with the huge crowds and line ups. Good thing our guide managed to get us in fairly quickly even with a few choice “merdes”.

  7. 0

    Been to a few of those places, but the Taj Mahal was one of the best, beautiful building and so well built.

  8. 0

    Our son and grandson are just back from Athens and Santorini. The photos were beautiful and they were very impressed.



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