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US newspaper names Vancouver spots among world's worst tourist traps

There are some classic sites to see when you visit Vancouver. But while many Vancouverites still have lots of love for spots that attract crowds from all over the world, there are some people who’d suggest these are “overrated.”

A new list from USA Today was shared this week after it analyzed more than 23 million Google reviews of the 500 most popular tourist attractions in the world. The search in July looked into data from 65 countries in six continents. 

“To help you avoid a case of destination letdown, we turned to the treasure trove of data found in online reviews that can help savvy travelers make the most of their vacation planning,” the article reads. 

“For each attraction, we asked a simple question: how frequently do the reviews mention the terms ‘tourist trap,’ ‘overrated’ or ‘expensive?’”

From there, USA Today said it compared attractions to one another “by measuring the relative frequency of these mentions, dividing the number of mentions in each case by the total number of reviews for that attraction.”

Among the Top 100 Biggest Tourist Traps Worldwide, two destinations in BC were named.

Here’s how they ranked.

Capilano Suspension Bridge 

Capilano Suspension Bridge/Vancouver’s North Shore Tourism Association

This one may come as a surprise as it was recently listed as a destination considered the one of most magical places in the country. However, according to USA Today, on the worldwide scale, the Capilano Suspension Bridge was the top 8th site which reviewers used the phrase “tourist trap.” 

Out of 27,179 reviews, folks used the phrase “tourist trap” 161 times — which is a 0.59% frequency.

It also ranked in second place as an “overpriced” attraction worldwide as 3.80% of reviewers (out of 27,179) mentioned the word “expensive.”

When it came to being considered the most “overrated” in the world, it was ranked in the 25th spot. 

Grouse Mountain

Grouse Grind

Grouse Grind/

The popular mountain in Vancouver to escape to the great outdoors has also made it on the list. 

Grouse Mountain was ranked in 93rd place as USA Today found 0.08% of 12,644 reviewers used the phrase “tourist trap.”

It also ranked as the 29th most “overpriced attraction worldwide.”

Other Canadian “tourist traps”

BC was not the only Canadian province to have its sites included in USA Today’s list.

In Ontario, seven of its province’s attractions were deemed “tourist traps” like Niagara Falls and the CN Tower.

USA Today

Meanwhile, regarding “overpriced destination,” spots in Calgary, Quebec, and Ontario were listed.

Canada’s Wonderland, The Calgary Stampede, and Chateau Frontenac were among the sites that ranked.

USA Today

In total, there were seven “overrated” Canadian attractions which also made it on the list.

USA Today


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