White rounded corner
White rounded corner
Aim, Focus, Shoot - The HyPyC blog
The Cliched tourist standing proudly in Pisa

Being labelled as a clichéd tourist/traveller sucks

The title of this blog post is meant to be ironic - I don't actually see myself as a clichéd tourist, but most of the places I have visited are often labelled as "too touristy" and "clichéd" - They are places everyone has been too, and not "off the beaten track" - This sometimes leaves me feeling that I am not a true traveller, or that I am doing something wrong in visiting these places, does anyone else feel like that? I sometimes feel guilty for wanting to see the Colosseum instead of visiting a barely travelled to Chinese province? What draws me to these places? Why go where so many have travelled before?

Times square in New York - How could you!

What is a clichéd tourist/traveller?

Clichéd - "Having become stale or commonplace through overuse"

Cliché - "A person or character whose behavior is predictable or superficial"

Tourist - "One who travels for pleasure"

Traveller - "One who travels or has traveled, as to distant places"

I took these definitions from the dictionary and summarise a clichéd tourist as "Someone who often travels to places that have become stale and commonplace through overuse" When read like that at it's base level, yes that fits my travel style accurately - I have been to a host of clichéd places and seen some of the most recognisable buildings/attractions in the world, to give you an idea some are listed below:

  • New York - Statue of Liberty & Empire State Building
  • Rome - St Peter's square & the Colosseum
  • Paris - Eiffel Tower
  • Barcelona - La Sagrada Familia
  • Pisa - The leaning tower
  • Florence - Ponte Vecchio
  • Monaco - Monte Carlo Casino
  • Orlando - Disney Land
  • London - Big Ben & London Bridge
The Colosseum, Rome - Uninspired!

That list would make a lot of travellers shudder with disgust - so many over-crowded, tourist riddled destinations full of clichés and uninspiring attractions that so many people have seen before! That right there is what I don't understand and why I get annoyed sometimes at the disdain and apparent disregard that seems to be given to people who travel to such places.

Why you shouldn't care about being a clichéd tourist

Travel should be personal to everyone - there should be no set plan, no places you must go to, no places you must avoid because they are too touristy. You should travel where YOU want to, for your own reasons, and that should be all to consider.

Don't worry about stigmas, labels or clichés - I did for a while after reading many blogs and articles about visiting the unknown, and getting off the beaten track, but when I actually stopped and thought about why I have visited the places I have, it made sense, and I was content with my choices.

Florence Cathedral - riddled with tourists, way too Clichéd!

I went to New York because I love American history and I have seen the skyline and iconic buildings in so many films, that I just had to experience it for myself. I went to Rome as I wanted to marvel at the 2000 year old Colosseum and admire the decadence and architectural beauty of the Vatican and St Peter's Basilica. I went to Barcelona to see the bizarre creations of Antonio Gaudi as I had studied them during my GCSE Art course. I went to Monaco as I love fast cars and I wanted to see if it really was the playground for the rich.

People may label these places as clichéd and tourist traps, but for me they were all spectacular and I feel privileged to have visited them and witnessed what makes them so popular. I do want to travel the world, and see places people rarely visit, but I also have a list of clichéd destinations that won't be missed.

So, to the travellers who may have reservations about visiting somewhere because its too clichéd; If you want to go there, then go, that really is all that should matter. And to the travellers who might look down on people if they visit these places; please remember that travel is personal, and everyone has their own goals, dreams and ideas.

Comment Box is loading comments...

What is Aim Focus Shoot? My travel blog! Aside from travel reviews I also maintain a regular blog with different travel & photography articles such as photo essays and memorable moments.

Simply click on the "read more" button to read the full article, and use the numbered buttons above to navigate through the pages....Enjoy!

Regular blog features
Hotel Reviews Photo Essays Photo of The Day Travelling with an Illness Travel Insights
Bkpk.me Traffic Exchange
White rounded corner
White rounded corner

Have you Packed the Camera? © is a blog dedicated to travel and photography