10 Places That Look Better in Photos Than in Reality

When a traveler describes a location as “postcard-perfect,” the irony is that no postcard could do it justice. Of course, some incredible photographers can capture a place in light that the human eye can’t measure, though nothing beats the real thing, right? Wrong. Many adventurers feel some places are better left to photographers — a recent online discussion shares some of these low-exposure destinations.

1. The Moroccan Desert

The Moroccan Desert
Image Credit: Shutterstock.

The thing about the desert is its weather. The place looks majestic if it is calm and bright, but if it is windy and dusty, you can’t see much. One visitor remembers having a great time quad biking in the dunes of the Moroccan desert, though it wasn’t until they saw the photos of the dunes from a distance that they could marvel at their beauty.

2. The Pyramids, Egypt

Image Credit: Shutterstock.

Having lived in Cairo before, I am still in awe of the Pyramids. Having also visited them up close and even gone down into the bowels of Khufu the Great Pyramid, I will confirm that they look better from afar. When you see the mythical turrets poking above the sprawl of Cairo beneath them, they cast a spell on you. Moreover, they look stunning at sunset from a drone — far better than any perspective from the human eye.

3. Vietnam

Da Nang, Vietnam
Image Credit: Shutterstock.

Google Vietnam’s natural beauty, and you will be dumbstruck by some variations; whether it is turret-like limestone mountains in Ninh Binh National Park or the sweeping Ha Long Bay, there is no end to stunning wild spaces. However, the discarded litter leaves a bad taste in busier areas, tainting a beautiful landscape. Photographs might not do Vietnam’s panoramas their justice, but they do hide a sad problem.

4. Uluru, Australia

Uluru (Ayers Rock), the iconic sandstone rock in the centre of Australia, Northern Territory, Australia
Image Credit: Shutterstock.

Those patient landscape photographers who sit for hours, waiting for the perfect light to hit Uluru, can capture its red rock radiance. But some former pilgrims are less impressed. Sure, there are deep spiritual and cultural connections (the reason they eventually closed climbing routes in 2019), but ultimately, you drive hours to look at a giant rock.

5. Antelope Canyon, Arizona

Antelope Canyon, Arizona
Image Credit: Shutterstock.

I have been lucky enough to sample Antelope Canyon and enjoyed the experience, though I agree with some visitors that it looks way cooler in the photos. Professional photographers get access to the attraction after visitors leave, giving them space to shoot those mesmeric curves. There’s a reason guides advise people to point cameras up; they must avoid the shuffling conga line of tourists.

6. The Statue of Liberty

The Statue of Liberty
Image Credit: Shutterstock.

Like Tom Cruise, cameras have been kind to the Statue of Liberty. As a kid, I thought it was the size of the Empire State Building; other travelers agree that it seems insignificant after seeing it proudly in so many photos. They don’t tell you it’s closer to New Jersey than New York and dwarfed by most skyscrapers. However, it is still a worthwhile trip, if anything, to see New York Harbor.

7. The Northern Lights, Norway

The Northern Lights, Norway
Image Credit: Shutterstock.

A Northern Norwegian resident gets the complete Aurora Borealis treatment regularly, though she concedes that the human eye cannot take all that light in. Do pictures make the Northern Lights out to be much stronger than they are? Intensely strong lenses, perfectly synchronized F-Stop, and well-chosen shutter speeds say yes.

8. Paris, France

Paris, France
Image Credit: Shutterstock.

The subject of countless movies, photos, and paintings, Paris is never far from most fashionistas’ and romantics’ minds. However, is Paris as romantic as it once was? Some travelers beg to differ, citing how underwhelming much of the city is. One French lover praises the country’s open spaces and countryside for the opposite effect, where photos cannot capture the charm offensive.

9. Stonehenge, England

Dusk over Stonehenge near Salisbury in the Wilshire countryside
Image Credit: Shutterstock.

An utterly British appraisal follows, with a sardonic view of Stonehenge (which never fails to remind me of the hilarious This Is Spinal Tap scene). The spiky Brit says his photos of Stonehenge are rubbish, but nowhere near as rubbish as seeing the real, visitor-blocked thing. Furthermore, you are forced out through a tourist trap chicane offering you overpriced Stonehenge fridge magnets and sweaters. No, thank you.

10. Horseshoe Bend, Arizona

Horseshoe Bend, Arizona
Image Credit: Shutterstock.

The most famous part of the great Colorado River is Horseshoe Bend, where hordes of preening Instagrammers erode the site’s romance. Some visitors say how anticlimactic the whole ordeal is, not to mention how the approach is more ‘meh’ than majestic. One funny chap reveals how his unedited phone photos of Horseshoe Bend looked better than the real thing — now that is what you call a putdown.

Source: Reddit.

10 Major US Cities That Offer Quick Access to Nature’s Beauty

Happy couples enjoying vacation in beachPhoto Credit: Shutterstock

Who doesn’t like going on a relaxing (or strenuous, depending on your preference) hike that isn’t far from the middle of a bustling city? Millions of Americans hike at least once yearly, and most live close to bigger towns offering nearby trails just out of city limits. Recently, experienced hikers met in an online discussion to reveal the best U.S. cities that provide the quickest access to excellent hikes.

America’s Top 15 Hauntingly Creepy Destinations Would You Visit?

scared woman running Photo Credit: Shutterstock

Spooky spots have left the sweat-drenching scenes of nightmares; they now live on some eerie streets of America, sending shivers down the spine of adventurers who dare step foot on their soil. From abandoned asylums screaming that you steer clear of the knobs of their doors to haunting lighthouses remembered for the darkness they hold, tales of paranormal activities bind the land of the free, and an internet fandom of the dark vets these destinations as the creepiest of them all.

12 Famous American Small Towns That You Can Visit Today

Traveling with friends Photo Credit: Shutterstock

When we think of small American towns, specific images come to mind. Do you picture a place like the fictional towns of Stars Hollow, Cabot Cove, or Mayberry? It’s undeniable that little towns across the US have the wholesome, nostalgic, peaceful qualities we imagine. But smaller cities are more varied than we might think. Contributors on an online forum shared some of the most famous, and the choices may surprise you.

10 Expert Travel Hacks for Solo Female Tourists

Solo woman traveler enjoying in beach Photo Credit: Shutterstock

Traveling solo is challenging, especially for females. While the thrill of exploring a new place is exhilarating, there are plenty of tips and tricks savvy travelers swear by. Recently, solo female travelers met in an online discussion, put their heads together, and came up with a list of the essential travel hacks for any woman embarking on a solo adventure of a lifetime.

11 Tips for Staying Calm and Collected While Flying

Woman having headache in plane Photo Credit: Shutterstock

For millions of travelers worldwide, flying is the opposite of a calm and peaceful experience. Flight anxiety is natural, and sometimes it can be crippling, especially during turbulence. However, hope is not lost! Recently, frequent fliers met in an online discussion to reveal the best tips and strategies for staying calm during your next flight.

     This article was initially published and syndicated by The Cents of Money

Leave a Comment