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Awesome Things to Do in 'The World's Most Overrated Tourist Destinations'

Earlier this month, The Huffington Post published a list of the 10 most overrated tourist destinations in the world as voted on by the site’s readers. The list yielded some predictable results, as well as a few fairly baffling entries. But the fact is that real travelers give every destination a sporting chance, because, inevitably, you can find something cool to do or see no matter where you go. We’ve listed one awesome place to visit in each of the 10 destinations in HuffPo‘s survey.

Hidden Easter Eggs, Disney Parks
Let’s assume that you’ve got no use for classic rides like The Pirates of the Caribbean and Space Mountain and you find the laughter of children to be mildly irritating. You’re not the target audience for Disney Parks, in other words. But that doesn’t mean you can’t find a way to entertain yourself. Next time you’re at one of the magical kingdoms, check out these sweet Disney theme park easter eggs that will kind of blow your mind. Reddit users went to town on this topic two years ago, and Buzzfeed followed suit last fall. Some of the best ones include the secret spot to catch a glimpse of the Cheshire Cat, the voodoo enchantress casting spells near New Orleans Square train station, and the sneaky (and totally ‘pullable’) rope in the line for Indiana Jones Adventure.

Local Cuisine, Las Vegas
If casinos, burlesque shows, $2 margaritas, and everything about the Las Vegas strip sounds trite and unappealing, then best focus on what is arguably Sin City’s finest attribute: the local cuisine. Practically every major casino is home to at least one first-rate dining establishment, from fancy fare like Restaurant Guy Savoy at Caesar’s Palace and Joël Robuchon at the MGM Grand to casual options like Burger Bar near Mandalay Bay and Le Village Buffet inside Paris. There are plenty of places outside the city, as well—check out Anthony & Mario’s Pizzeria for some of the best slices in the city.

Local Museums, Paris
The sprawling capital of France is considered one of the world’s great intellectual capitals for good reason: ParisUpdate.com lists nearly 80 different museums within Paris proper, ranging from The Museum of Eroticism to establishments dedicated to the likes of Madame Curie and Honore de Balzac. For a glimpse at the Parisian art scene without Louvre-sized crowds, check out the impressive Impressionist collection at the Musee D’Orsay. The gang’s all here: Monet, Manet, Cezanne, Degas, Renoir, Seurat, Gauguin and Van Gogh, not to mention a plethora of talented artists you’ve probably never heard of.

Dunn’s River Falls, Jamaica
Seriously, a lot of HuffPo readers didn’t have a jolly good time in Jamaica. No doubt most of these naysayers missed out on Dunn’s River Falls, a rippling waterfall near Ocho Rios on the island’s northern shore. Named as one of the top Jamaican spots by The Travel Channel, U.S. News and World Report and TripAdvisor, the falls are abutted by a set of rock stairs just begging to be clambered across. Which you can totally do with the help of a guide. Seriously, go climb a waterfall and then try to say something bad about Jamaica.

Brooklyn Heights Promenade, New York City
Some of the Big Apple’s most recognizable tourist attractions (the Statue of Liberty, Empire State Building and Times Square) draw the longest lines, and just one of these spots can eat up your entire day. To catch an awesome view of the city’s expansive skyline and get a bit of exercise, take a stroll down the Brooklyn Heights Promenade. This boardwalk thoroughfare leads to plenty of eating and drinking spots, so enjoy your walk in the late afternoon to catch the city at its most picturesque.

Water Park, Atlantis Paradise Island
This floating fantasyland for adults can be pretty overwhelming (isn’t that the point of visiting an island devoted to leisure?) but the water park at Atlantis has to be seen to be believed. The Leap of Faith offers a 60-foot drop; Challenger Slide allows two individuals to race each other to the pool below; and The Abyss leads sliders through an underwater lair of creepy fish.

Relaxing by the Pool, Cruise Ships
OK, HuffPo may have gotten us here. The type of people who find cruise ships overrated tend to be introverted, health-conscious, landfaring individuals, and it’s tough to find a perk of cruise travel that could be used to incentivize them otherwise. So let’s go for the simple and obvious: a relaxing recliner by the pool, a pair of earbuds, some interesting reading material, and a cold beverage. Give it a whirl if you find yourself on a cruise ship after you explicitly stated you’d never set foot on one. It’s the little things.

Opera Theatres, Venice
Maybe opera isn’t your thing. It’s 2014, that’s not weird. But if you were to catch an opera, wouldn’t you want to do so at one of the world’s premier venues for operatic performances? The Teatro la Fenice has hosted Rossini and Verdi, two of the finest operatic composers of all time, and continues to draw crowds just about every night. So pick up a set of opera glasses, rent a tux, and party like a true Venetian.

Wildlife Treks, Florida
The Sunshine State catches a bad rap throughout the rest of the United States for a variety of reasons, from flamboyant politicos to sweltering heat. But at the end of the day, Florida is a gigantic swamp. And if swamps are good for anything, it’s wildlife treks. The Everglades is an obvious starting point, but there are awesome preserves and wetland nature walks throughout the state. Check out Ding Darling Wildlife Refuge on Sanibel Island, Big Tree Park near Orlando and Weedon Island Preserve on Tampa Bay for some of the best bird and gator watching anywhere.

Kailua, Hawai’i
Honolulu is an interesting place, a metropolis with all the amenities of a major U.S. city yet somehow lacking the charming island flair that has come to define the Hawai’ian Islands. Too many Hawai’i visitors spend the bulk of their time in the archipelago’s largest city, and that’s the last place you should be spending your vacation to the islands. For that laid-back Pacific paradise vibe you thought you were signing up for, drive about 25 miles northeast to the town of Kailua. Fantastic food, character-filled watering holes, decent shopping, and plenty of public-accessible beachfront property. Lodging in Kailua is also considerably cheaper than crashing in Honolulu.


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