How To See Past The Tourist Traps Of Your New City

Posted by on Dec 28 | 2015

We’ve all seen tourist traps, and most of us have at one point fallen for their allure. The idea of tourist traps is to get hapless tourists visiting well-known attractions, mainly with the intention of taking their money.

Tourist Traps
Source: skift.com

What constitutes a ‘tourist trap’ is open for debate and everyone has their own opinion. For instance, Italians may consider the Leaning Tower of Pisa a tourist trap, but still, foreign visitors would pour in every month and take pictures pretending to hold the tower and thoroughly enjoy themselves while doing so. Another good example is Las Vegas; some say the entire town is a tourist trap, while a lot many others believe there is no better town in the USA to pay a visit to.

The reality of the matter is that tourist traps are different for everyone, but overall, they’re simply over-priced attractions that simply aren’t worth too much of your time. The problem isn’t with the tourist traps themselves, but instead with their popularity. When you move to a new city and try to look up what you can do in the area, it’s common that a majority of the results are targeted towards tourists, not new residents.

So how do you get past that information? Where can you find new places to explore that are actually worth your time? Here are 3 ways to explore your town without being sucked into the tourist traps:

  1. Find Local Events Listings
  2. It’s uncommon that local events are too ‘touristy,’ simply because they people attending them are usually residents of the town. Look in newspapers and online for upcoming local events. This can introduce you to not only new music and shows, but also the theatres and other buildings they’re being held in!

  3. Do An Online Search For Recently Opened Restaurants
  4. Sure, you can see which ones have had the best reputation over the years, but the chances are the longer it’s been open, the higher the prices are and the more tourists know about it, too. Finding newly opened restaurants can bring you to new areas of the city you have yet to explore, and will introduce you to a menu that not many others have yet had the chance to try!

  5. Connect With Residents Online
  6. Many cities have their own online forums through their government websites, and even the ones that don’t likely still have city-based chat rooms (for example, Reddit has many sub-pages that revolve around locations like this) where you can connect with residents and get insider information on what’s new, what’s hot, and what’s worth going to.

When you’re looking for new spots to explore but want to avoid tourist traps, simply get creative with your resources! Forego reading ‘Top 5 Places to Visit in Your City’ threads, as they’ll likely contain bland and overly-obvious information. Instead, use our tips above and get acquainted with your new city on a more intimate level!

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