“Eh.” – The Places That Just Didn’t Knock My Socks Off

When it comes to travelling, I am yet to meet a person who has loved each and every place they have ever visited. For whatever reason, sometimes we find that we just don’t mesh with a city, and as a result, may not remember it all that fondly.

Furthermore, the cities that we fall in love with may be considered less than stellar by other people, and by the same token, the places we end up disliking may be the shining stars for others.

I preface this following list by saying that these are all just personal opinions and are not intended to cause anyone offense.

So, without further ado, here is a list of a few cities that I just didn’t love.


People bang on about London being the greatest city in the world, but honestly, it’s been one of my biggest disappointments.

Everything is overpriced, people are about as far from friendly as possible, the weather is crap, the food is utterly shite and the place is just too damn big. I have given the place a couple of tries and have been equally disappointed both times.

I am sure there are a tonne of people out there who will disagree with me, but for me, London just wasn’t a good fit. Maybe one day I will return to London and get a new perspective on the place, but for now, there are so many other places that I want to visit so much more, so I will not be returning any time soon.



Dili is the capital city of Timor-Leste (also known as East Timor) and it is a pretty much unavoidable stop for anyone entering the country.

The city does have a large expat population and is certainly not without interesting places and points of interest, but due to a certain mo’fo of a taxi driver, I don’t think I will ever think of the place fondly.

After I landed in Dili a cab driver attempted to rob me, and when he was unable to take my bags from me, proceeded to physically assault me – the details of which you can read about here.

Luckily, the rest of my time in Timor was nothing short of wonderful, but at the moment, Dili and I are not on great terms.



I absolutely hated Barcelona.

I know, I know! It is the home of everything Gaudi, there is a tonne of incredible architecture and the food is wonderful. Yep, those things may all be true, but that doesn’t change how much I dislike the city.

I found it overpriced, far too touristy, and compared to Madrid – the food was just nowhere near as good. It didn’t help that it pretty much rained non-stop the entire time I visited. It also didn’t help that I was kinda stuck hanging out with some Canadian guys who I really did not mesh with.

I was pretty miserable for the few days I spent in Barcelona, and the whole time I was wishing that I had just stayed in Madrid. However – unlike London, I have not completely written the city off. It isn’t the fault of Barcelona that the weather was atrocious, and I also can’t blame the city for the presence of a few Canadian dickheads! So while I may not have liked Barcelona, I am certainly open to giving the city a second chance one day.



Ugh, Phuket.

When I hear ‘Phuket’, all I think of is overcrowded beaches, hoards of tourists flocking to swim in unbelievably polluted water, sand covered with rubbish and more drunk idiots than any place should ever be subjected to.

This is definitely not a shining example of what Thailand has to offer.



Part of me hates putting Rome in this list. Rome is undoubtedly a bloody cool city, one with tonnes of history, culture and all of the food one could ever desire. However, for me, Rome was a victim of being too highly anticipated.

I had dreamed about visiting Rome for so many years (since I was a wee little kid) and in all of my dreams, Rome would be the absolute highlight of my time in Italy – but this was just not to be. When I arrived in Rome, I was shocked by how dirty the city was, how much rubbish littered the streets and how many annoying street vendors wouldn’t let me walk more than a few steps unbothered! The Coliseum was beautiful, but not as grandiose as I had expected. The Trevi Fountain was lovely, but far less magical that I had anticipated. The gelato was good, but it was better in Florence.

If I had visited Rome without any expectations, I am sure I would have loved it, but for someone who was expecting a lot, Rome just didn’t live up to the hype.



If you have ever found yourself disliking a place purely because you had a bad experience there, then be assured that you are most certainly not alone.

My time in Dublin was initially good, but on my last night in the city, I was sexually assaulted. This is not something I talk about very often – it was hands down the most horrific and traumatic time of my entire life – even my closest family and friends do not know the details of exactly what went down on that particular night. Even now, many years on, I find it incredibly difficult to talk about. I can say the words ‘I was assaulted’ without issue, but the second I actually start going into detail about what happened, I go into a pretty instantaneous meltdown.

When I think about Dublin, all I can think about is what happened to me there, and as a result, I know that Dublin is one city that I will never return to.

So tell me, what cities failed to impress you?

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20-something year old Australian backpacker writing her way around the world.

231 thoughts on ““Eh.” – The Places That Just Didn’t Knock My Socks Off

    1. I hope so too! One of my closest friends lives in London and absolutely loves it, so I am a firm believer that my opinion is purely a subjective one. Hopefully you see a side of London that I didn’t. Happy Travelling!

    2. I love London! It’s my favorite European city so far. But, I’d been only to 8. I find the blending of the new and old in London charming. Hopefully, you’ll find something that appeals to you. Safe travels!

  1. I’ve lived in Dublin, and I loved London, but Paris is the one city I will never return to. Attempted assault and a continual feeling of being unsafe, Paris was a nightmare for me. Thanks for this post, I feel like more travel blogs need to admit that some destinations are not for them!!

    1. See, I absolutely loved Paris, but I can definitely understand how such an experience can taint a place. I am sorry to hear that you suffered an attempted assault there – I know first hand how horrible that is. I hope your future travels are all safe <3

  2. We do not agree😀: I love Barcelona and Dublin – but Madrid is on one of the top ones on my “eh” list. So is Paris. I know, I’ll get shot for saying this😉.

    1. Not shot at all! That is the whole point of this post, to talk about the destinations I wasn’t fond of but also to reiterate that there are different strokes for different folks and different places will appeal to different people!

  3. Always interesting to hear about the places people don’t enjoy. Often it’s because of particular incidents. Mine might include San Sebastian (unfriendly / people shouting at us), Prague (far too touristy) and Ho Chi Minh City (being constantly harassed and motorbikes everywhere). Sorry to hear about your experience in Dublin, must be even more traumatic when you are in a foreign country by yourself. It’s understandable that it’s tainted the city for you.

    1. Totally agree about certain incidents tainting a place! I have heard other people say similar things about Ho Chi Minh – I haven’t been myself but it certainly sounds like an ‘in your face’ kinda destination.

  4. Texas Gulf Coast – blah beaches, some with lots of litter, and off shore oil wells to gaze at.

    Toronto has become too overcrowded.

    Dallas – no there there – just one big mass of sprawl. Prefer San Antonio and Austin.

    Orlando – unless you like theme parks. Nice airport tho. I prefer the Space Coast or St.Pete.

    1. I completely agree about Orlando (speaking from a Floridian). It’s far too touristy and there’s so many other great options within an hour or two from there. The Space Coast and St. Pete are both great, as well as my hometown, St. Augustine. 🙂

  5. I can’t bear Paris either – too expensive, too unfriendly (and I say this as someone who used to live in London!), the food’s mediocre at best and the service appalling. I’m also not a big fan of Dublin or Byron Bay, and hated Hartford (Connecticut). I understand what you say about London, it is too big, expensive and can be really unfriendly, but I love it, there’s loads to do and the food’s fantastic, if you know where to go.

    1. See, I did a lot of exploring in London, even in the non touristy areas and it just wasn’t for me – whereas I found incredible food and wonderful locals in Paris – I also found Paris to be far cheaper than London.

      It comes down to luck – not everybody will love every place, I think some people have better luck in certain places and thus have better experiences.

      1. I fully agree, your opinions are shaped by your experiences and tastes. With certain big cities such as Paris and London, I also think having that local knowledge helps. I know loads of great, cheap places in London and equally the awful, overpriced places to avoid. And am aware Paris is the same, I just need to find the good places to go. I know someone who used to live in Paris and she raves about it (and the food) and was aghast when I said I didn’t like it.

  6. I think with London it’s about escaping the city and discovering the outskirts – it’s those places that will show you there’s more to the city than its (often negative) stereotypes. Personally, I find Paris a little underwhelming (largely due to the excessively romanticised image of the city, but also because I have found other French cities and towns to be far more architecturally impressive, culturally interesting etc.) and wasn’t overly enamoured with Kyoto (though I loved Arashiyama, Fushimi Inari and the Golden Pavilion, I had a severe case of temple overload at that point in my trip, which took the edge off it a little).

    1. It is certainly a shame. I went to London with nothing but positive expectations and really did do a tonne of exploring, but I just didn’t mesh with the place – and that is okay. I know that a lot of people love London (as they are telling me in these comments!) but it just wasn’t for me. I am glad you enjoyed it more than I did!

      As for being templed out, that I can totally relate to! Happened to me in Bali – they all just started to blend together after a while…

    1. NYC is on my list, but I don’t think I will get there any time soon.

      I think the bigger cities, London, Paris, NYC can be quite polarising – people either love them or they hate them, there isn’t much middle ground!

  7. So refreshing to hear about places that you haven’t enjoyed as well as those that you love. Think a lot of travel blogs focus too much on selling a city or country, rather than providing an honest and balanced opinion. I had the same issues with Budapest when I went a couple of years ago. We used the subway and the ticket officers fined us for no reason other than the fact we were English (as far as we could tell). I’d like to return one day, maybe not in the height of summer and more in the fringe seasons, as I did enjoy the nightlife and some of the sights are incredible…

    1. Thanks David. I try to be open and honest as much as possible on this blog, and the truth is that travel isn’t always sunshine and roses! I visited Budapest in the winter and absolutely loved it – but I think travelling in the off season makes a lot of European destinations more appealing.

  8. I agree with you on Phuket, only spent one night there and that was enough. Phi Phi was not much better despite it being the low season. I had to look for things to do – barhopping not an activity I ever do.
    I finally gave Hong Kong another chance a few years ago, had always hated even just landing there on my way to the mainland. It was great to be with one of my daughters to share exploring and take on the language. Neither of us speak Cantonese but can get by with Mandarin.
    Very brave of you to even mention an assault, too often such dreadful, often life changing, events are not ever brought up despite how important it is to do so – when the time seems right for the individual. I am heartened knowing that you have not let it overtake your zeal to discover, explore and embrace travel and life.

    1. Thank you very much, It is not something I talk about often, but it is something that happens to many women in life – travelling or not – and it had a huge impact on how I feel about Dublin, and thus thought it should be included on this list.

    1. For a lot of people I am sure it is, but for some people (myself included) visiting with a plan doesn’t make much of a difference. Some people just don’t fall for some places – the bigger cities are not immune to this.

      1. Thats understandable! I mostly visit the city for the chinese food from Noodle Stop on leicester square and the giant Lush store in oxford street so i get excited every time.

  9. Wow.. I’ve never seen so many people dislike Paris.. I’m glad. I did not like it. I do however love London and honestly don’t understand why people don’t like it.. but then again i found Paris overpriced, unfriendly, underwhelming & rather underwhelming after being in London, so I guess it just means that we all have different tastes.. which is totally not a bad thing 😊

    1. Hit the nail on the head Sarah! I absolutely loved Paris, and disliked London for all the same reasons you disliked Paris. All our different tastes are what make the world such an interesting place 🙂

  10. I completely relate to how you felt about Rome! I’d hyped it up so much in my head that once I got there j was just sort of…underwhelmed. It was just so big and somewhat difficult to navigate and made all the more frustrating by the pushy street vendors! I’d love to go back someday with lower expectations and maybe be pleasantly surprised, but I’d much rather see other places. Great read, so glad I’m not alone in not loving every great city in the world!

    1. Oh man Ashley, you and me are on the same level when it comes to Rome! I would be open to going back one day, but like you, there are so many other places that I want to explore more – so it might be a long while before that return trip happens.

  11. Great blog topic. I think for me the places that I didn’t like are Vaduz, Liechtenstein, and Banjul, Gambia. I like Paris now but didn’t when I visited a few years ago. And completely agreed- London is overpriced.

      1. Out of the city it was interesting and I particularly liked the birdwatching. One of the biggest problems in Gambia is that it has a reputation for European women going out there looking for younger men. So even if you are like me and completely not interested in that- other tourists can be nasty and make assumptions.

  12. Good thing we don’t all like the same places. Cities that make the top ten lists are already overrun by people just checking a list. And it’s true that I can arrive in some cities and immediately feel “yes!” or “no!” But sometimes it’s the weather, or feeling sick, or just where we choose to stay. I didn’t care for either Madrid or Barcelona in 2004, but when I went back to Barcelona in 2015 I stayed in a lovely apartment in the Eixample and liked it much better.

    London is my favorite big city, so I wonder whether it was the weather that turned you off? Of course, London is one of the best places to be in bad weather, with all those free museums to visit. And if the weather is good there is a plethora of free parks. Like any city it can be expensive (although the pound is down right now) but it absolutely doesn’t have to be. I stay in one of the B&Bs lining Gower St in Bloomsbury (convenient for the tube in from Heathrow). Ensuite single with full English breakfast for 77 GBP. In the summer I stay in one of the LSE student dorms with a kitchen and fix my own breakfast and some dinners. Lunch is a sandwich from Pret.

    1. I don’t think the weather can be to blame – I loved Scotland after all and the weather isn’t all that different! I stayed in hostels, caught public transport and did what I could to save money, but I still found it to be more money than it was worth. I can’t put my finger on it completely, but it just wasn’t the place for me.

  13. I have to agree with Rome also but I did enjoy the history and architecture since those are my passions. Dirty, food was just ok until you get off the tourist routes and into the neighborhoods and the train station had a lot of people eyeing what they could grab and run with. Florence had a lot of hawkers there and it seemed you were constantly tripping over blankets laid out on the streets and sidewalks until the police arrived and they would grab the 4 corners of the blankets and walk away quickly. Venice was another city that was beautiful if you stayed away from the tourist areas and got lost in the back alleys. The Cruise ships are ruining Venice. Another disappointment for me was Arles, France. DIrty a lot of street people who looked VERY DODGY and not a very frIendly town when we were there. Preferred Avignon, France better and it is just a little further north. But I was not very happy with the trip to southern France that much at all and do not wish to return. I know there are places there that probably are wonderful but we chose the wrong places or the wrong time to visit for 5 days out of 30 and it did not leave a good feeling to return. If anyone has any different ideas of southern France please let let know. Great article keep them coming.

    1. I really like Nice in the off season. Wouldn’t go near it in the summer, but it has reliably warm weather (although not always dry), plenty to see in town and nearby that’s reachable by public transport. Wouldn’t say the food was great but you could rent an apartment and fix your own.

      1. Thanks for the advice. Did not get to Nice but see might have to try. And yes I always travel in the shoulder season never the tourist season.

  14. I feel like the extremely tourist-y places are a let down! White the cities themselves have a lot to offer, a lot of their charm is lost by the sheer number of people who visit them!

      1. Yeah, to be fair, I’m rather well-travelled and the places I’ve joined the most are lesser known. Basically, those that aren’t big cities. Big cities somehow don’t appeal to me as much.

  15. Thanks for your listings.. to every traveler, there will likely be varying experiences, unique.. anticipation of a place often is what sends me off to go there.. sorry about what happened to you in Dublin…

    1. Don’t be sorry, it wasn’t your fault! It was a horrible thing that happened to me, but it is in the past now. I do however, appreciate your empathy.

  16. I’ve visited Paris twice now, just was there during Christmas, and I’m ok not going again. I definitely understand the allure of romance, but for whatever reason I just don’t love the city. Despite all the crowds, I love London but can certainly see why you and others aren’t big fans. Some places are not for everyone and that’s what makes travel such a personal and unique experience! And crazy hearing about your Dublin experience, I would not blame you in the slightest for seeing the city in a negative light. Very brave just for mentioning in a public forum like this and glad you are well enough to even talk about it.

    1. I get that. You have tried the city a few times and didn’t love it – so it’s normal to not want to go back.

      Thank you very much. It really is a tough thing to write about. For a long time I denied the extent of what happened, because I didn’t even want to admit to myself how bad it was. However, I now think an important part of putting it behind me is to acknowledge that it happened, so that it is not left hidden in a box lurking in the attic of my brain.

  17. Sorry you didn’t enjoy London, its one of my favourite cities, but then I am biased living just a few miles away. I do agree though that the food is crap and the people are less than friendly. A city i love and will always want to go back to is Kyoto it is just so beautiful. A city I have no plans to return to is Casablanca, apart from the mosque there is really nothing to see.

      1. Fez was amazing but also very scruffy and dirty; the food was excellent. But for the real Morocco go to the Atlas Mountains, you can do it in a day trip from Marrakesh if you are short of time. Best Xmas lunch we have ever had in the sunshine on a rooftop terrace overlooked by the mountains we had just hiked over. Marrakesh is also fantastic – so much to see.

  18. I really liked reading this, so much good information from a totally honest perspective. I’m so sorry about Dublin, glad you are OK. ❤️

  19. I have to say that Amsterdam left me nonplussed. I spent a week there in Autumn of 2011.

    I liked the cannals and the port area, but otherwise it’s a pretty plain place that isn’t up to the hype.

    While I was not looking to purchase the services of a prostitute or to buy marijuana, I was told that a visit to Amsterdam is not complete without a walk through the Red Light District and that the smell of weed was EVERYWHERE.

    I never smelled marijuana once while I was there and I found the Red Light District to be laughably small and inactive any time I walked through it. I was later told by a local that the hype for the RLD fits what it was ten years ago and that the area has been shrinking year on year while the hype has not been.

    We visited one of the diamond cutting houses and got an interesting tour. However, as soon as my girlfriend even joked that I should buy her a ring, our guide turned into a sales person faster than Jekyll turned into Hyde and the experience was quite unpleasant from there. It was a hard sell to say the least.

    1. Oh god yes that does not sound like fun at all! I was lucky, I had quite a lot of fun in Amsterdam, but I think that was mostly due to having made a lovely friend there and really enjoying her company!

  20. I guess with Rome and Barcelona that London is not alone then in major cities around this side of the world which you did not enjoy. I’m sad about that, but the weather there does look awful in London. I guess it falls in-between of your enjoyable hot or cold climates here.

    I see you’ve not visited anywhere else in mainland Britain and now hesitate to recommend anywhere because I’m not sure what you’d enjoy. Hopefully one day you’ll come back to us.

    I’m sorry to hear about Dublin. I know you’ve surfed on that story once before, without giving any details, and I’m just more sorry to find out that it happened around here. I hope that you got the appropriate help to be able to deal with that awful experience.


    1. Maybe one day. I fell in love with Scotland so I have been recommended to go to the lake district!

      It’s okay. It was horrible, and I was too scared to report it (I just wanted to get on a plane and come home) but it was a long time ago now.

  21. I’m not really a fan of Paris although I’ve been a couple of times. Prefer cities like Toulouse and Montpellier, although they might not have the most for visitors in terms of sights to see.

    Florence actually felt too touristy, some stunning buildings but I prefered the walled city of Lucca.

    There are things about Buenos Aires that I really like but it didn’t live up to the hype for me.

  22. Hmmm, you are the second person I know who dislikes Barcelona. I have never been there so I will have to keep an open mind. Of all the places I visited, my least favorite is Cancun, Mexico.

  23. I went to London for the first time when I still lived in Scotland and found it to be polluted and unfriendly. My best friend moved there later on and subsequent visits were an improvement when viewing it from a local’s perspective but then a frustrating experience marred it again. I also found Paris to be immensely unfriendly too.
    India is also marred for me due to my experience there: constantly being hounded and grabbed by beggars in most public places then ended up being hospitalised with a nasty bout of Delhi Belly that took 6 months to fully recover from. As a result I’m in no hurry to give it another chance.
    I’m really sorry to hear you were subjected to such a sh*t experience in Dublin but glad that it hasn’t stopped you from getting out there and seeing the world.

    1. One of the girls I work with just got back from India and had a very similar experience – like you, she has no desire to go back.

      India is definitely on my list, but I am not in big a rush to get there.

  24. Interesting post. I disliked Dublin too. Being British, I used to quite enjoy a visit to London because of the size but was always glad to leave again. In NZ, I did not enjoy Queenstown because of the crowds (the surrounding scenery is gorgeous though) or Napier (the advertised Art Deco architecture could not redeem it in my eyes). I did love Rome though – gobsmacking views everywhere I thought.

    I really didn’t like Sydney very much when there last time…outside of the main tourist centre and the harbour, it felt kind of seedy, smelly and too busy. Melbourne was a much nicer experience but without the same wow factor.

    Generally though, I much prefer places where lots of people are not present. Tourist traps can be especially horrible. Beautiful scenery tops man made stuff every time for me.

    1. I haven’t been to Sydney since I was a little kid, but it’s the kinda place I have no real desire to visit. Melbourne is a great city though.

      Me too on the scenery > man made stuff 🙂

  25. Great post! I think it’s really interesting to see what places didn’t resonate with people. Athens + Paris were both ‘eh’ cities for me, but I’m open to visiting again. I don’t think I’ve had a city yet that I just WILL NOT return to.

      1. I was expecting there to be a lot more ancient architecture through the city (something I loved about Rome), the city was very modern, so much concrete, traffic is just unreal – people only get to drive cars every other day depending on the number on their license plates – and it was so dirty. I found things within the city that I enjoyed, but I was so underwhelmed in general. Have you been?

  26. I agree with you 100% on Rome!

    When you give Barcelona a second chance, let me know, and I will tell you where to go to avoid the tourists! In Spain, I don’t care much for Madrid, Salamanca or Sevilla, which are three of the biggest touristy places.

    My first time in Dublin was meh, but I enjoyed it the second time. I am so sorry to read of your experience, but I find it incredibly brave and strong to mention it here.

    I find other cities in France cooler than Paris, but I may give Paris a second chance some day.

    I grew up in the US, and I find New York to be overrated. I tell my students to visit Chicago instead.

    1. Oh I definitely will – give me all the tips for Barcelona and Chicago! 🙂

      All I know about Chicago is that it is cold and famous for deep dish pizza haha

      1. In the summer it’s quite hot, and the houses don’t always have air conditioning! I’m from the midwest, so that might be why I love Chicago more than New York, although Ohio is about the midpoint between the two cities.

        Barcelona: Avoid Las Ramblas and if you’ve already seen the Gothic Quarter, no need to return unless you loved it. Check out L’Eixample, Gracia and Sarria neighbourhoods. The latter is only for locals and quite charming. Granted, I am also a Catalán junkie so it’s right up my alley/street.

        Also, its neighbour Girona is much smaller and just as lovely. Tarragona is also close by with better Roman ruins than Rome *hides from the Rome lovers*

      1. Paris weather, prices, arrogant people, Rome long queues for everything, smelly metro, Bruges rip off prices of hotels, awful food, Budapest street beggars, needing to pay to visit cathedral and synagogues, Prague drunken hordes and street vomit, Malaga pretentious museums especially Picasso museum, Madrid prices, late night street noise, high prices of tapas bars.

  27. I love London above all! But Barcelona wasn’t my cup of tea either. Paris is on my list of dissapointment, the hotline the Japanese have for their ruined Paris dreams would’ve been needed. I wasn’t into Torshavn, I think I recall you loved it. 😀

  28. I am currently living in London and agree, very overrated. I cut my contract short, because I keep paying absurd prices for everything and wonder why I am still doing it. Great post!

  29. 100% agree on Phuket. Overpriced. Super Westerny. Overpopulated by tourists (which isn’t a surprise given its a popular touristy destination, but it reinforced for me that I prefer getting off the beaten path when I travel). I’ve had people interested in teaching abroad in Thailand tell me they’d like to go the Phuket and I always advise them that there is so much more of Thailand than Phuket and teaching in a less touristy place would be far more enriching.

  30. I completely agree with you about Barcelona. It just wasn’t as great as I thought it would be and the food didn’t impress me as much as surrounding areas. However, I LOVED Rome! Although I’ll have to admit, I’ve loved everywhere that I’ve been in Italy. I don’t know if it’s my Italian roots or just visiting at the right time and the right places. My “eh” town would have to be Prague, which is really surprising to most. I just felt as though one day there was enough, opposed to the week that I spent there. Great post – thanks for sharing!

    1. I think a lot of the time it does come down to the right place at the right time! The circumstances of our trips can play a massive role in how we remember them.

      Thanks for reading!

  31. I am so sorry about what happened to you in Dublin. I had a similar thing happen to me in Guadalajara so yeah, completely written off, no if, ands, or buts.
    But I do hope you give Barcelona a second chance! I went once when I was quite broke and I still found lots of cool things to do (most involved the many parks on top of hills). Also it will probably help to be rid of those terrible Canadians.

    1. I am sorry to hear that you have had a similar experience 🙁 it’s not right how many women have similar stories!

      As for Barcelona – it has definitely not been written off and I am sure it will be given a chance to redeem itself one day.

  32. I’m very sorry to hear about your Dublin experience. I understand what it’s like to have a bit of trouble talking about a traumatic experience like that.

    I’ve been trying to think of bad travel experiences and I can’t really come up with anything that would be bad enough to not want to return to a city. I guess I’ve either forgotten or have been lucky to enjoy my travels thus far.

    1. Thank you very much. I am very glad to hear that you have not experienced something like this which is bad enough to taint a city for you. I hope your future travels are just as safe <3

  33. With a name like Phuket you had to see that coming, lol. That picture of London (from the Eye?) is spectacular. I’ve long wanted to go. I was stranded in an airport in the middle of the night in Istanbul three days after 30 cops were killed in a suicide bomb attack in the city and I managed to have nothing but a great memory out of it. Really sorry for your horrible and very personal Dublin experience. Brave of you to share. I’m lost in love with that city. It’s a shame that was stolen from you. The more you share, Ellen, the more I love reading. Please keep it up. Nicely done. 🙂

  34. Your photo of London cracked me up. I absolutely loved it as a city living there, but I often realised that I never went and did ‘the touristy stuff’, or went into town on the weekends, instead stayed in my local areas with markets/cafes etc.

    I think a hard part of travelling is that you feel like you need to ‘constantly be having a great time’ or ‘constantly being wow-ed’ when as you say the reality can be dirty, being pestered, or worse. Great post!

  35. I love that you’ve written this post, for me it was Paris, I wrote a whole blog post on it but I wasn’t sold at all. The friend I travelled with lapped it up, but it just seemed like a glamorous pretense.. oh well.

    You’re so brave to talk about the times you were assaulted, I haven’t had anything like that happen to me yet, and I’m so sorry it happened to you. Thank you for sharing x

    1. I hope so much that something like that never does happen to you. Being sexually assaulted is one of the most soul destroying things that can happen to a person. I wouldn’t wish it on my worst enemy 🙁

      Thank you for reading and safe travels <3

  36. Great post, though I am really sorry to hear what happened in Dublin. Re London, I’ve been a few times and for some reason, the weather gods were on my side – always fantastic weather! As such, I’ve been able to visit many lesser known corners of the city and quite like it. Re Barcelona, it was okay. Pretty, yes, but also like you said, expensive!! I’ve not ever not liked a city but i do admit to being quite underwhelmed by certain famous things – Eiffel Tower, seeing the Mona Lisa, and Machu Picchu being some!

      1. I think it is a case of high expectations. There is no way a place can live up to the romance the mind builds up! I enjoyed the journey getting to MP more than MP itself but I know not everyone feels the same way!

  37. I actually can’t think of a disappointing city off the top of my head, as I come from a small town & any time I was in the city it felt like an escape from the boring quiet town.

  38. I do have a deep love for London, but I have been lucky enough to experience it with friends who have grown up there and who have shown me their versions of the city. That being said, I can completely see how a visitor can have an equally bad experience there, and I agree wholeheartedly with your point about big cities like London, New York, Paris, etc being polarizing cities that people tend to either love or hate. For me, Delhi is the city that is just not the place for me — it’s too big, it can be difficult to navigate, and a few bad experiences have left a bad taste in my mouth. I will go back every once in a while because I have close friends who live there, but it will never be my place, and that’s ok. On the flip side, I absolutely thrive in Bombay, where many acquaintances have felt overwhelmed and out of their element. It just serves to demonstrate the diversity that makes our world great.

    Thank you for sharing this. I wish more travel bloggers would be as candid about this as you have been. And I’m so sorry to hear about your experience in Dublin. I hope that is something you never have to experience again. Hugs xx

    1. I have heard similar things about Delhi – things that make me more nervous to go there than excited! But, I will have to visit one day and see for myself. Who knows, maybe I will be on the other side of it’s polarisation…

      1. I definitely think it is worth a visit, but I would suggest not making it your first stop in the country. Ease yourself in somewhere a little smaller and slower-paced, and then visit Delhi once you’ve had some time to adjust to India in general. I would love to hear your thoughts when you do finally make it to India!

    2. I agree with Veena. It was last month that I first visited Delhi. Contrary to my expectations that i have been building….the city is very lazy…markets open not earlier than 11:00. I was there on Christmas day. The local markets are over crowded. Being an Indian, when i say overcrowded……it really means. But I know there are lots of good stuff there…..May be i need to give a second chance..for I spent not more than 8 hours. But definitely not a warm experience.

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