Thursday, November 15, 2007


Those of you who know me know I'm always making lists of things. Forbes Traveler has a page full of best-of travel lists, so I could help but peruse them and tally up how many of the places listed I'd visited. The site is nice in the sense that they have nice photos and writeups, but I find it really annoying that you can't just flip through the photos manually without kicking in the automatic slideshow.

Anyway, here's how I fared against some of their lists:
I've only visited 9 of the 50 Most-Visited Tourist Attractions in the world, but my wife, who's been to Europe and Orlando and has spent more time than me in New York, registered about 21 of these.

I've only visited 2 of their 10 Hidden National Park Gems - Point Reyes National Seashore and Hawaii Volcanoes National Park. CORRECTION (11/1/08): How did I miss seeing Mammoth Cave National Park on that list? I've been to three.

I fare better on their list of the top 30 Most-Visited Cities in the U.S.A., where I've been to 22 of the cities listed. Orlando is the only city I've missed in the top 17. (Surprising that New Orleans didn't make the list, though the figures are from a post-Katrina 2006.)

Considering the number of cities around the country I've been to, however, it's kind of surprising that I've only been to 5 of the 25 Most-Visited Museums in the U.S. - The Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History, the Museum of Modern Art (New York), the California Science Center, the Getty Center, and the Art Institute of Chicago.

On their list of the 15 Most-Visited Amusement Parks around the world - and alternates with fewer crowds - I've only been to the two local ones, Disneyland and Knott's. But reading the list can be a fascinating peek at the colorful parks one might see around the world.

Also worth noting would be the comparison between the 20 Countries Most-Visited by Americans and the 20 Countries Whose Residents Most Visit America. There are some interesting differences there - the positions of Mexico and Canada are flipped, far more South Koreans visit the U.S. than the other way around, etc.


At Thursday, November 15, 2007 at 5:11:00 PM PST, Anonymous doafy said...

Wow. I have nine of the fifty too. I wonder if they are the same ones.

At Thursday, November 15, 2007 at 5:35:00 PM PST, Blogger Adam Villani said...

Not quite. I know that you have #12, Great Smoky Mountains National Park, and I don't. My nine are:

1. Times Square
2. National Mall and Memorial Parks
5. Disneyland
7. Fisherman's Wharf/GGNRA
28. Universal Studios Hollywood
31. Grand Canyon NP
35. SeaWorld California
41. Grauman's Chinese Theatre
46. Yosemite NP

At Thursday, November 15, 2007 at 8:31:00 PM PST, Anonymous Grouchy-Lynne said...

Wow, Forbes can suck it.

They won't let you see their list without sitting through their photoslideshow, and their list is full of slow-loading bullshit Javascript. No way am I spending ten minutes on that.

They, and their ad revenue, can get bent.

At Thursday, November 15, 2007 at 9:20:00 PM PST, Blogger Adam Villani said...

I think you can probably see it in straight-up list form if you buy the magazine, but that, of course, entails buying the magazine. I know I always see news bits telling me that, say, Maxim has put Scarlett Johansson at the top of a sexiest women list, or that Blender has listed the Eagles as the World's Douchiest Band or something, yet they never have the complete lists online.

I'm guessing that's just the current Way It Is for print magazines and their online presence. Everybody's reluctant to give away stuff for free, but nobody wants to be left out of the internet.

At Friday, November 16, 2007 at 2:07:00 PM PST, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have 30 of the 50. What struck me, however, was the number of times I came across places on the list that I have not visited, but that are located in cities/regions I have been to.
Along this same line, after years of living in the Bay Area, it was only a few months ago, that I visited Alcatraz for the first time.

At Friday, November 16, 2007 at 2:38:00 PM PST, Blogger Adam Villani said...

I've been to San Francisco something like 8 times, once for an entire week, and yet I've never been on a cable car.

At Saturday, November 17, 2007 at 5:48:00 PM PST, Anonymous doafy said...

Interesting, Adam. We've got three different.

I have
Times Square
Great Smokey Mountains NP
Universal Studios
Grand Canyon NP
Sea World
Statue of Liberty
Grauman's Chinese
Empire State Building.

Didn't you go to NY at sometime and do touristy things? How do I have all two you don't there?

At Sunday, November 18, 2007 at 9:44:00 AM PST, Blogger Adam Villani said...

On that trip to the northeast, we spent one night at the beginning and one night at the end of the trp in New York, which is where I saw Times Square. Instead of the Empire State Building, we went to the World Trade Center (this was in 1997). We could see the Statue of Liberty, but we didn't go there. We also saw Wall Street and a bunch of neighborhoods like Chinatown, Little Italy, Chelsea, Greenwich Village, etc. We ate pizza and bagels. We went to St. Patrick's Cathedral and walked past Rockefeller Center. We went to the Museum of Modern Art. We drove out to Brooklyn on our way back to the airport and saw Coney Island, but it was winter, so the amusement parks were closed.

Basically there are more than two days' worth of things to see in New York.

One thing I have still never done, however, is hail a cab.

Oh, also, since for some reason they're combining Fisherman's Wharf and the Golden Gate National Recreation Area, that means you can include that one if you've been to Golden Gate Park, Alcatraz, Fort Point (which I know you've done), etc.

At Sunday, November 18, 2007 at 1:06:00 PM PST, Anonymous Kevin Kraft said...

I had about 19 (my memories of a trip to London 28 years ago are a bit hazy). The format is monumetally annoying. The guy from The Bug Picure ( a good financial blog I read, used the term "click whoring", which I find descriptive.


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