You Won’t Believe How Many Of Our Grandparent’s Favourite Vacation Spots No Longer Exist
With an increasing awareness of the damage that us humans are doing to the earth, we are rapidly losing landmarks and natural wonders that were once accessible to everyone. Because of pollution, climate change, excess tourism and unstable world politics, places that were once popular tourist hotspots are being destroyed and forgotten about by the modern traveller, who is no longer able to visit.
In some of these cases, losing access to former tourist hotspots is for the best, while in others, it’s just plain tragic. What’s baffling about the loss of these tourist attractions is that just a few decades ago our grandparents and parents would have been able to freely visit these now elusive spots. You won’t believe the shocking and saddening reasons for the closure of these former attractions, and it will make you think; what tourist attractions that are popular today will our own children be prohibited from visiting?…
Chacaltaya Glacier, Bolivia
The story of the Chacaltaya Glacier is a sad one which shows exactly how devastating climate change and excess tourism can be on a natural landscape. This glacier was one of the world’s most popular skiing spots to travel to in the 1960s and 1970s, but this tourism was cut short in the 1980s when a massive meltdown totally destroyed the area and its amenities. Nowadays, the area is home to a research facility and not much else.
Jonah’s Tomb, Iraq
Jonah’s Tomb in Iraq was a place of religious symbolism for devout followers of Jewish, Chrisitan and Muslim traditions, and was thought to be the burial place of Jonah, an important man in the holy texts. Devastatingly, this tomb was blown up by an ISIS terrorist bomb in 2014 and is no longer intact.
Pont Des Arts, Paris
When the French government decided to regenerate the famous Pont Des Arts in Paris, tourists and locals alike were devastated. This famous bridge was full of hundreds of padlocks, each one representing a different couple’s love. The government’s reason for replacing the Pont Des Arts with modern glass panelling was a matter of health and safety in the end; they feared the bridge could collapse under the weight of all the padlocks, and the number of keys being thrown into the Seine underfoot was becoming damaging to its natural ecosystem.
Waimangu Geyser, New Zealand
The Waimangu Geiser was an incredible natural Geyser caused by the eruption of the huge volcano of Mount Tarawera in New Zealand. Incredibly, this Geyser erupted for 5-6 hours at a time every 36 hours and was a hugely popular destination amongst tourists. Eventually, however, the Geyser sputtered out and hasn’t been active since 1904.
The Berlin Wall
Despite the intense controversy and tension that came from the former Berlin Wall, it would be wrong to say that it didn’t ignite a lot of interest for tourists and visitors alike. The Berlin Wall was erected in the 1960s in an attempt to segregate West Berlin from the rest of Germany and Berlin. Following the iconic falling of the wall in 1989, we’ll never be able to experience it first-hand as a generation. Which is probably for the best, if we’re honest.
The New York Hippodrome
From 1905- 1939, the New York Hippodrome was one of the city’s most popular tourist attractions, pulling crowds of 5000 night after night. The Hippodrome was a prestigious theatre located in the heart of Manhattan’s Theatre District which thrived during the roaring ‘20s, hosting a huge range of films, circuses and shows for massive audiences. Sadly, the theatre closed down in 1939 and was converted into an office block, which it remains today.
Guaira Falls, Brazil
Before the 1980s, Guaira Falls in Brazil was a popular tourist attraction. The falls were a huge group of stunning waterfalls that were so powerful they could be heard from 20 miles away and separated Paraguay and Brazil. Astonishingly, in 1982, the Itaipu Dam erased the waterfalls completely, leaving the area empty and dry.
Christmas Island’s Coral, Australia
The destruction of Australia’s famous coral reefs is absolutely devastating and shows the dangerous effects of climate change loud and clear for us. Many years ago, the coral on Christmas Island was plentiful, colourful and laden with sea life. Today, the reef is totally destroyed due to rising heat as a result of climate change. Utterly heartbreaking.
The Former Penn Station, New York
Did you know that New York’s current famous Penn Station had a predecessor? The original Penn Station was located in New York City and was a rail hub for over 40 years before it fell into gradual disuse in the 1950s. In an attempt to regenerate rail transport, the current Penn Station was built and the former station was demolished, with Madison Square Garden built over its ruins.
Lascaux Cave Paintings, France
The Lascaux Cave Paintings were discovered in France in 1940 and immediately opened for tourists to view. These ancient paintings were fascinating and gave an amazing insight into the lives of those living in France over 17,000 years ago. Despite their popularity, French officials were forced to close the caves as a tourist attraction due to health and safety concerns about the structure of the caves.
The loss of these famous tourist destinations is tragic and shows the destruction and harm that is happening to our natural world every day. Think about your favourite place to visit as a tourist… will it still be there for the next generation to see?
Sources: bondijoe.com, jusmedic.com, patternsofevidence.com, paris.worldtravelcompanion.net, imjustagirl16.co.uk, haikudeck.com, nycago.org, amusingplanet.com, futurity.com, forbes.com, castlehs.com