Tourists, no matter how amiable they may be, invariously prove annoying to locals. It’s just an unavoidable fact of life. Take Times Square in New York City, for example: swarming crowds of picturing taking visitors from nearly every corner of the globe have completely taken over this nine-block swath of the city from locals, who can’t stand the overcrowded congestion and overpriced restaurants and overwrought attractions. Or Faneuil Hall, in Boston: What once was a haven of a historical destination is now a soulless shopping mall.
But, as it turns out, this unwelcome trend—the rapid transformation of popular landmarks into craven tourist traps—is happening all across the United States. From Seattle, Washington, to Washington, D.C., and everywhere in between, our country is slowly but surely turning into one giant gift shop. So read on to learn the areas you should avoid if you want to appear authentic across America.
1 Times Square; New York, New York
Ask any New Yorker about Times Square, and they will most likely tell you to avoid the area at all costs. According to locals, it’s the worst tourist trap in the entire city. Every year, no matter the season, New York City attracts millions of tourists from around the world. In fact, more than 355,000 people walk through this busy center every day, according to Times Square Monthly Pedestrian Count Reports. Since Times Square is often the first place tourists want to visit, it has become a mecca for tourists, and features countless overpriced eateries and uncomfortably-crowded sidewalks that native New Yorkers would only visit under the most extreme of circumstances.