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Old 14th January 2015, 21:13   #1
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Default List of avoidable holiday spots & sightseeing places!

So, we recently concluded a 8000 kms drive across Rajasthan. We visited a lot of places and skipped a few. After going to certain places, we were disappointed for various reasons. I thought it would be great if everyone can chip in with a list of their least favorite tourist places and why we can avoid those. Some may not agree but to each his own. As long as you put your reasons here, you can even list the Taj Mahal as one of the places to avoid. As a matter of fact, the touts around that place are irritating. The building itself was not as impressive as I imagined. Here is my list for now.

1) Scindia Museum, Gwalior - Reason to avoid it is that it is a more recent palace, made in 1874. The museum doesn't have enough to hold your attention, particularly if you are not spending many days in Gwalior. The ticket is overpriced (70 Rs per head) and camera charge is the same. There are cricket kits, pens etc belonging to Madhav Rao Scindia! I am not sure anyone should be asked to pay for seeing that. Then there are rooms with children's toys and such. I felt this was the lowest point of our trip.

2) Sam dunes - Too many tourists and filth. We dint go there for that reason. Instead we went to some other dunes by renting a chauffeured 4wd for half a day. Alternately, there is are really big dunes on the way to Tanot/Longewala and hardly anyone stops there. It was great.

3) Great Rann of Kutch: There are too many tourists here and too much filth is thrown around. If you are not staying over, it is absolute waste of time. You cant even take a decent picture without loads of tourists showing in the frame, behind you. Kala dungar promised a great view from the top but we weren't impressed. You may opt to go to Dholavira instead. You will find white Rann on the way, a lot more pristine and without a single tourist at most times. Then once at Dholavira, go to the temple at the end of the island. There is a BSF post and a temple, with a chaiwala. From here you can see the great Rann of kutch and one of the most serene sunsets.

4) Kumbhalgarh fort: Now don't jump on me. The fort itself is superb and we were awestruck looking at those huge walls going around till your eyes can see. The problem is this - When you enter the fort, you have to walk straight up to see the "palace". It is a good 15-20 minute continuous walk to reach the top. It is quite steep too. Once you reach there, there is absolutely nothing to see. It looks like you are in old government office. The view from there is great though. We stayed there for 15 minutes and just about every visitor said the same words "is that it?". Avoid this, particularly if you are with older people. Do visit the site though.

What is your list?
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Old 14th January 2015, 22:04   #2
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Default re: List of avoidable holiday spots & sightseeing places!

Really interesting thread that I am sure will have a lot of contributions and heated debate.

I am a Mumbaikar and this is my list for outsiders who are entering Mumbai for the first time.

1. Number one on my avoid list to outsiders is the "Gateway of India".
At least don't visit it during the normal morning to evening times. It is crowded, with photographers annoying the hell out of you every few minutes. How these people manage to stay in their professions in the era of camera phones is beyond me. If you have to visit, go during early morning hours to catch the sunrise or late post midnight. Security is good around this area, so you don't have to worry about safety during off-hours.

2. Juhu beach. Strip of sand, sea, rubbish, stray dogs, pestering hawkers, snobbish power walkers, lots of people. Close your eyes and imagine what I have written in my previous sentence. You have experienced Juhu beach.

3. Siddhivinayak temple. If you have a religious bent of mind and want to worship, by all means go ahead. But if you are going for touristic interest, then avoid. There is nothing extraordinary about this temple. It is a modern structure with no artistic value.

4. Taraporewala aquarium. It is an embarrassment and a criminal waste of space. You will see better fish tanks in hotel lobbies. I have been hearing plans for an upgrade since last 2 decades.

5. Jijamata udyan zoo. Ditto of item 4. Animals are well treated though. Just the overall ambiance is poor.
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Old 14th January 2015, 22:31   #3
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Default re: List of avoidable holiday spots & sightseeing places!

Very good thread. Well thought.
Below are some of the places which I did not like after visiting despite them being high of tourist's radar. Some may not chose to agree though.

1. Puri- the beaches are highly overrated. It's crowded, dirty and the waves are very strong which means one cannot enjoy in water. Scams played with tourists like selling artificial pearls, taking tourists to privately owned boats which are at least 3 times expensive than the govt. ones for commission were a big turn off for me.

2. Juhu beach- crowded and dirty.

3. Dimna lake, jamshedpur- nothing much to do there.

4. Digha, near Kolkata - rocky, overcrowded and dirty. How can one enjoy at such a place? Mandarmani and Tajpur near it are infinitely better places to enjoy.

Besides these which come to my mind at the moment- I mostly end up hating most of the religious places too. Reasons best not discussed as some may take offence

Last edited by saket77 : 14th January 2015 at 22:35.
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Old 15th January 2015, 16:10   #4
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Default re: List of avoidable holiday spots & sightseeing places!

Very good thread. In fact this is a very good idea for a mobile App : "What Not To See".

Agree with what saket has said about most religious places. Having spent 40 years in Mumbai, I have no regrets that I have been to SiddhiVinayak temple just once and to Shridi temple just twice.

A few places that left a bad taste in the mouth:

1. Lonavla - Its no longer a hill station. Over crowded. Over urbanized. Drunkards everywhere during monsoon weekends. Nasty traffic jams on most weekends. Just a sea of people at every so-called tourist spot in Lonavala. Completely avoidable.

2. Jaali wali masjid and Jama Masjid in Ahmedabad - The structures are beautiful, no doubt. What put me off were boards saying "No women allowed inside". Really? In this age?

3. Shani Shinganapur near Shirdi - Multiple things. First, no women allowed. Second, you have to take off your shirt-pants-vest and wear a safron colored piece of cloth and then you have to walk bare-feet on slippery roads to offer oil to the deity. Ughhh.

4. Some famous temple near the huge ganesha at Hampi - Human waste literally 10 feet from the temple entrace. What more to say?

5. Temple in Gokarna (Karnataka) - This is supposed to be quite a popular religous and tourist place. The approach roads, once you leave NH17 are just horrible. Then all men need to remove shirt/tees/baniyan to enter the temple. When I saw the board, I thought somebody is kidding. But it was serious. A guard was checking all men just before entering the temple. I mean, which god wishes to see his worshipers stripped half-naked before he gives darshan to them? As PK would have said "Yeh wrong number hain!!"

I stepped out of the line rather than removing the shirt. Spent the time admiring some really healthy white cows and bulls that were tied just outside the temple.

PS: No intention of hurting anybody's sentiments. Just sharing how I felt.

Last edited by Rudra Sen : 16th January 2015 at 09:52. Reason: typo
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Old 15th January 2015, 16:14   #5
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Default re: List of avoidable holiday spots & sightseeing places!

Nice thread! Off the back of my head:

- Lavasa: The only thing good is the drive up the ghats. Once you're there, you'll realise what unnecessary hype Lavasa has generated. This one is dead b-o-r-i-n-g. It's a ghost town.

- Munnar: Surprised? Let me finish first. For anyone from Mumbai etc. who has been to the likes of Mahabaleshwar, Munnar doesn't offer anything new. I've seen more beauty in Mahabaleshwar & Panchgani. The drive up the super long ghats is also taxing...IIRC, it took 4 hours of slow, curvy roads to get there (both times I was in a taxi Innova).

- If one day of my life stands out as wasted, it's the day spent on a train as part of the 'Skagway White Pass Scenic Railway Tour'. What a bore, Lonavla offers equal (if not more) beauty. A slow moving train with greens that will wow only those who've never headed out of the city. Overhyped and overpriced, please avoid if you're ever on an Alaskan cruise.

List of avoidable holiday spots & sightseeing places!-p1400082.jpg

List of avoidable holiday spots & sightseeing places!-p1400085.jpg

List of avoidable holiday spots & sightseeing places!-p1400109.jpg
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Old 15th January 2015, 16:30   #6
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Default re: List of avoidable holiday spots & sightseeing places!

So many options that I could think of:

1) Panchmarhi in MP
Over rated, over crowded and the water falls that are supposedly "most beautiful" unfortunately look better over the Khandala Ghats in Monsoon.

2) Bhandardara
Ok place with no good accommodation available barring a couple of pretty expensive options. Other than the Arthur lake, nothing else.

3) Daman
Unlike its much better counterpart located almost 1000 kms away(Diu), Daman is plain dirty and too many stray beer bottles on the filthy beach

4) Mount Abu
Another popular avoidable destination. Haven for the drinkers in Gujarat.
Even Dilwara temple disappointed.

5) Sam Sand dunes
Too crowded and you are not welcome after sun light.
Expensive place as well.
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Old 15th January 2015, 16:52   #7
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Default re: List of avoidable holiday spots & sightseeing places!

Quote:
Originally Posted by arnabchak View Post
...
2) Bhandardara
Ok place with no good accommodation available barring a couple of pretty expensive options. Other than the Arthur lake, nothing else.
...
I know to each his own, so was avoiding commenting on anybody else's places. BUT, Bhandardara? That place is heaven in monsoon and towards the end of monsoon. Completely agree with the limited and expensive accommodation options. In a way, its a blessing in disguise. Its precisely beacuse of those limited and expensive stay-options that this place has remained relatively untouched and under-explored by tourists.

About what to see there, the natural beauty is just overwhelming. Besides that, there's Randha waterfalls, Amruteshwar temple (~900 years old). If you have the time, you can also do 2 treks here: Ratangad and Harishchandra gad.

My first experience with Bhandardara: http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/travel...-igatpuri.html (An unplanned long-weekend trip to Bhandardara-Igatpuri)

This year, when I visited, there was less fog and rain .. and the experience was entirely different.

http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/travel...ml#post3534045 (Revisiting the Greenery - Monsoon drives, 2014)

Check it out.

Last edited by SDP : 15th January 2015 at 16:54.
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Old 15th January 2015, 16:59   #8
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Thumbs up re: List of avoidable holiday spots & sightseeing places!

Pitching in from my hometown,

Mall Road, Shimla !
Avoid it all all costs , its crowded, doesn't offer anything special or worthwile that you can't get in any other tourist spot in the country.

As an alternative please make it a point to visit, IIAS(Indian Institute of Advanced Studies)which is the former Viceregal Lodge and a stunning example of Victorian Architecture and Taradevi Temple for one of the most stunning views of the town, especially in the evenings !

Thank me later
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Old 15th January 2015, 16:59   #9
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Default re: List of avoidable holiday spots & sightseeing places!

My Way of avoiding places is more inclined towards the day of visit rather than the place of interest itself. Comes as no surprise when folks drive out on long weekends and end up spending time at toll booths, Hotels, gridlocks, Ticket counters and 'et al.

I generally boycott anyone in my family or relatives who suggest me to drive them to the following places on weekends -
  • Lonavala/Bhusi Dam/Amby Valley
  • Lavassa
  • Mysore City
  • Brindavan Gardens
  • Mullayanagiri Peak
  • Shirdi & Tirupathi
  • Goa & Pondicherry

The above list is strictly for weekends and not totally avoidable otherwise.

I would rather opt for a leave on weekday when each one of the weekender is working and enjoy the roads and do eena meena deeka to pick my choice of Toll booth counter or Dining Table at the hotel I stop for Lunch/Dinner.
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Old 15th January 2015, 17:05   #10
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Default re: List of avoidable holiday spots & sightseeing places!

Quote:
Originally Posted by SDP View Post

3. Shani Shinganapur near Shirdi - Multiple things. First, no women allowed. Second, you have to take off your shirt-pants-vest and wear a safron colored piece of cloth and then you have to walk bare-feet on sleepery roads to offer oil to the deity. Ughhh.
Some change SDP, women are allowed, just they are not allowed in a small region inside the temple, but they can view everything. Further, no need to take off your shirt and change anymore unless you are doing the puja.

The slippery (#spellingfail again?) path remains slippery due to the amount of oil that falls on it while people offer oil to the deity.
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Old 15th January 2015, 17:21   #11
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Default re: List of avoidable holiday spots & sightseeing places!

1. Most famous temples/religious destinations (I won't name any names lest someone takes offense): I'm agnostic myself, but even from a devout person's POV, I simply don't get the lure of jostling in claustrophobic spaces (at some temples for several hours), and then get roughly pushed out without getting a proper 'darshan'. Most people I speak to (including family members) sheepishly agree that they sometimes don't even get a proper look at the deity before being pushed out.

2. Mussoorie: What a mess that quaint little place has become. Roads/walkways barely a few feet across chock-a-block with traffic, and the drive up/down from Dehradun is a royal mess with drivers who haven't the foggiest idea how to drive in the hills (or anywhere else).

3. Juhu Beach: I have a better chance of not catching some disease if I jumped into my neighborhood sewer. Enough said.

4. Mysore Palace: That place is just DEAD, except probably to click in a landscape shot at dusk. Plus it's hard to see it in historic light when the most prominent thing you notice on all internal walls is 'X loves Y' graffiti (not mentioning the unmentionables).

There are plenty of tourist spots I've re-visited from my childhood over the years and barring VERY few exceptions, I've regretted going back to most of them. Some probably because the childhood imagination and romanticism dies as one grows up, but mostly because of the ever-present throngs who have no respect for the place and most now come there for no other reason but to claim 'been there' on their social networking pages. Looking around, I'm forced to believe if ever there's a poll for the least useful consumer product in India, dustbins would win hands down.

Last edited by Chetan_Rao : 15th January 2015 at 17:24.
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Old 15th January 2015, 17:25   #12
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Default re: List of avoidable holiday spots & sightseeing places!

1. Choki Dhani, Jaipur : The place where you eat is very dirty. Forced serving and wastage of food. Overpriced as well.

2. Shimla, Himachal Pradesh : The most Overhyped place in Himachal Pradesh. The Mall road is just a road with shops on both sides, some branded shops as well. You have pizza hut, dominos and what not! You can get both these things at any of the markets in your city. Plus, the same parking headache associated with those markets! Always Crowded.

Chail is a better alternative.

There is no peace here, just chaos! A picture taken during a visit , spent almost 4 hrs at the same spot.

List of avoidable holiday spots & sightseeing places!-wp_000340.jpg

Last edited by sinharishi : 15th January 2015 at 17:31.
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Old 15th January 2015, 19:10   #13
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Default re: List of avoidable holiday spots & sightseeing places!

Juhu beach? I suppose all beaches(?) here in Mumbai are filth and drainage.

Here goes my list:

1)Alibag: Beautiful place now ruined by crazy tourist, drunkards. Beach is destroyed with all those ill-maintained water sports. Dirty and filthy

2)Kashid: Once a serene location now headed towards Alibag state

3)Kaas Plateau: Valley of flowers of Maharashtra. World heritage site. Now destroyed with idiots and morons. Thankfully government had some brains and they installed barricades so atleast half of the plateau is saved. But the other side, is on the verge of destruction. Maniac traffic, haphazard parking, morons running here and there, garbage strewn across...list becomes endless
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Old 15th January 2015, 19:46   #14
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Default re: List of avoidable holiday spots & sightseeing places!

Quote:
Originally Posted by SDP View Post
5. Temple in Gokarna (Karnataka) - This is supposed to be quite a popular religous and tourist place. The approach roads, once you leave NH17 are just horrible. Then all men need to remove shirt/tees/baniyan to enter the temple. When I saw the board, I thought somebody is kidding. But it was serious. A guard was checking all men just before entering the temple. I mean, which god wishes to see his worshipers stripped half-naked before he gives darshan to them? As PK would have said "Yeh wrong number hain!!"

I stepped out of the line rather than removing the shirt. Spent the time admiring some really healthy white cows and bulls that were tied just outside the temple.

PS: No intention of hurting anybody's sentiments. Just sharing how I felt.
SDP, In most of the temples in Kerala, you have to take Darshan with bare torso only! Shirts , banian is not allowed and 75 % of the places may insist you wear Dhoti too! In case you are planning temple visits in Kerala, this is advance information
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Old 15th January 2015, 19:54   #15
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Default re: List of avoidable holiday spots & sightseeing places!

Quote:
Originally Posted by srikanthns View Post
SDP, In most of the temples in Kerala, you have to take Darshan with bare torso only! Shirts , banian is not allowed and 75 % of the places may insist you wear Dhoti too! In case you are planning temple visits in Kerala, this is advance information
Thanks.
I am aware of this. Would plan my time accordingly. This time at Gokarna temple, while others from my family were busy with the darshan, besides watching the cows and bulls outside the temple, I had a couple of prasad laddoos. May be would do something like that in future as well...skip the darshan and directly get the prasad

Last edited by SDP : 15th January 2015 at 19:56.
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