Most Popular Tourist Attractions

Most Popular Tourist Attractions canada niagrafalls
Most Popular Tourist Attractions: Canada Niagrafalls

Most popular tourist attractions | Lifestyle magazine Travel+Leisure published a truly remarkable ranking of the most popular tourist attractions in the world based on pure imagination. Before we will prove them remarkably wrong, here comes the list:

#1: Grand Bazaar, Istanbul – 91 million tourists (wrong)
#2: The Zócalo, Mexico City – 85 million tourists (wrong)
#3: Times Square, New York City – 50 million tourists (maybe)
#4: Central Park, New York City – 40 million tourists (possible)
#5: Union Station, Washington, D.C. – 40 million tourists (wrong)
#6: Las Vegas Strip – 30 million tourists (true)
#7: Meiji Jingu Shrine, Tokyo – 30 million tourists (wrong)
#8: Sensoji Temple, Tokyo – 30 million tourists (wrong)
#9: Niagara Falls, New York/Ontario – 22 million tourists (true)
#10: Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe, Mexico City – 20 million tourists (possible)

#1: Grand Bazaar, Istanbul | Why can’t the Grand Bazaar in Instanbul have 91 million tourists per year? Because Istanbul only has 12 million tourists per year. One might argue: What about the national tourists and day trippers? Ok, agreed. There are Turkish tourists visiting the Grand Bazaar, too. But 79 million of them? That would mean: each inhabitant of Turkey has to show up at least once a year. Impossible. So who is behind this crazy number of 91 million visitors? Simple answer. It’s the people of Istanbul doing their daily shopping.

#2: The Zócalo, Mexico City | Why can’t 85 million tourists visit The Zocalo in Mexico City? Although Zocalo is the leading tourist spot in Mexico’s capital, it never appeared in any list of top 10 tourist attractions. Suddenly it skyrocked up to #2? Forget it. In 2015 Mexico City welcomed 25 million international tourists. That would leave 60 million to national leisure seekers. Impossible.

Popular Tourist Attractions times-square-1921
NYC Times Square, 1921

#3: Times Square, New York City | 50 million tourists? Possible. But here is the catch: Times Square as well as many other famous public places is free of charge. Tourists just come by, barely leaving traces. The Eiffel Tower in Paris counted 8 million tourists last year – paying to go up. But approx. 33 million international tourists visited Paris. At least 90% of them also took a walk on Champs de Mars, watching Paris’ most photographed tourist attraction from the ground: The Eiffel Tower. Throw in a few million national tourists and the Eiffel Tower will be right on eye sight with Times Square. Lifestyle magazine ‘Travel+Leisure’ does not even rank the Eiffel Tower among its top 10.

Popular Tourist Attractions tour-eiffel-1920
Tour Eiffel, 1920

The rest of this infamous list: Mostly based on insufficient research. Meiji Jingu Shrine and Sensoji Temple in Tokyo need to count 82,000 tourists per day to reach the number proclaimed by Travel+Leisure. That’s ambiguous, and it would exclude the people of Tokyo because Temple and Shrine are right in Tokyo’s backyard.

The Strip in Las Vegas and Niagara Falls get our blessings. That’s 2 out of 10. Anyway, for smart tourists it’s much more interesting to know, which tourist attraction is actually worth the money? Here are our recommendations:

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Most Popular Tourist Attractions. By Chili & Churp | © International Destinations | Visit our -> Travel Alphabet.