13 Things You Didn’t Know About the World’s Greatest Tourist Attractions
Did you know that 40 per cent of the New York subway system is above ground, and it runs 24 hours a day? Did you know London, England draws more international visitors than any other city on the planet? Read on to discover more fun travel trivia!
1. The Golden Gate Bridge
One of the world’s most famous tourist attractions, San Francisco’s suspension bridge isn’t actually gold—its official paint colour is “international orange.” Its official website even publicizes the colour formula used to attain this orange hue, so fans of the bridge can replicate the exact tone at home. The bridge owes its golden name to the Golden Gate Strait, the waterway it straddles, not its paint colour.
3. Big Ben
If you’re referring to the tower in London’s Houses of Parliament as Big Ben, try again. According to the UK Parliament’s website, the tower is officially called the Clock Tower. Big Ben is the nickname for the clock’s bell.
Indulge your inner Anglophile with our countdown of the 50 Must-See London Attractions.
Don’t forget your swimsuit and snorkel—life really is a beach in Australia. The country lays claim to over 10,000 beaches—more than any other nation.
Pack your skimpiest bathing suit and set sail towards these sexy beach destinations.
5. Statue of Liberty
Reaching triumphantly skyward over the waters of New York City‘s harbour, the Statue of Liberty is one of America’s most beloved attractions. But surprisingly, this iconic American landmark began her life in Europe. Built by French sculptor Auguste Bartholdi, the Statue took nine years to complete and was shipped via boat from France to New York City in 350 individual pieces.
6. The Eiffel Tower
For more than 600 Parisians, the elegant Eiffel Tower serves as their daily workplace.
7. The Grand Canyon
Arizona’s steep canyon is certainly grand, but it’s not the world’s largest. Tibet’s Tsangpo Canyon actually holds the title as the planet’s biggest, deepest canyon. The Grand Canyon is the runner-up.
8. Niagara Falls
According to the City of Niagara Falls, over 6 million cubic feet of water hurls over the top of Canada’s Horseshoe Falls every minute—enough to fill a million bathtubs to the brim in 60 seconds. But once in March 1848, the water actually stopped flowing. A temporary obstruction at the mouth of the Niagara River in Fort Erie, Ontario caused the roaring cascade of water to shrink to a quiet trickle.
9. Vatican City
Museum aficionados, pack your bags for Italy. The Vatican Museums host the world’s largest museum complex featuring a wealth of treasures and masterpieces collected by various popes throughout the ages.
10. The Great Wall of China
Despite claims by various sources, including Ripley’s Believe It Or Not in the 1930s, NASA states that the Great Wall of China is not visible from the moon.
11. The Hollywood Sign
California’s celebrated Hollywood sign was originally constructed in 1923 as a massive billboard. Los Angeles Times publisher Harry Chandler erected the marquee to advertise his high-end real estate development. At the time, the sign spelled out “Hollywoodland” and had an expected lifespan of a year. Eighty years later, this once-temporary signage draws visitors dreaming of Hollywood from around the globe.
12. The Basilica of the Sagrada Familia
Barcelona’s most popular tourist attraction, the Basilica of the Sagrada Família is an extravagant work in progress. Construction of the Gaudi-designed church began in 1882 and continues to this day. Completely funded by donations, Sagrada Família uniquely stands out as one of the most recognizable symbols of Barcelona.
Take the road less travelled and visit these hidden gems, which we’re celebrating as the 10 most underrated cities in Europe.
13. Walt Disney World Resort
Not only is Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida the most popular theme park in the world, it’s also the largest. The enchanting land featuring theme parks, hotels, campgrounds and live entertainment, can rival many major cities. In fact, Disney World spans an area twice the size of Manhattan. The Resort is also the United States’ biggest single-site employer with over 50,000 workers toiling behind its magical gates.
Here are 8 Exciting Reasons to Visit Florida.