For better or worse, tourist traps are part of the American landscape. Countless overhyped, colorful, quirky, and sometimes downright mystifying spots draw sightseers nationwide — at least, when a pandemic isn't making travel too dangerous and complicated for such silliness.
Whether an attraction qualifies as a tourist trap is often in the eye of the beholder, and some are still beloved by locals. Travel blogger David James of The GypsyNesters has his own test: whether visitors leave feeling a little swindled. "But we love tourist traps," says his wife and fellow blogger, Veronica James. "David cannot pass them by. Boomers are really into this stuff because, when we were kids, that's where we went. We would pack up our station wagon and go to these places."
Some are iconic locales now overrun or overrated. Others lure road trippers out of the way of their intended destinations. They might be cheesy, inauthentic, overpriced, crowded, boring, ugly, or just plain not worth the time. We talked to travel bloggers and industry professionals and read online reviews to identify tourist traps in every state.