50 Entertaining Facts about Iconic Tourist Destinations Every Traveller Should Know

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1 The Louvre

The Louvre

If you wanted to see every piece of art in The Louvre in one visit, and you spent 30 seconds observing each piece, it would take you over a month, and that’s assuming you were there 24/7 and took no breaks and didn’t sleep.

2. The Statue of Liberty walks over a broken chain and shackles, half-hidden by her robes and difficult to see from the ground. They represent freedom and the end of servitude and oppression.

3. Mount Rushmore has a hidden hallway with granite stairs that was designed to hold American relics and documents.

4. The Great Wall of China is being stolen brick-by-brick by locals to build houses and also by visitors as souvenirs.

5. Australia’s Great Barrier Reef is being eaten alive by millions of venomous sea stars known as crown-of-thorns starfish (COTS). Scientists have developed a new robot to hunt and kill these sea stars—a murderous, autonomous underwater vehicle called RangerBot. It kills with a single shot of bile.

6 Big Ben

Big Ben

Big Ben (Elizabeth Tower) in London is leaning over so much it can now be seen with the naked eye. In 4000 years, it will be at the same angle as the tower in Pisa is now.

7. The Syndey Opera House is considered one of the worst project management failures of our time. It was 10 years late, 14 times over budget, the architect never saw it completed and the project manager never worked on another project in his career. He became a lecturer at Hawaii University.

8. World’s largest salt pan Salar de Uyuni in Bolivia is so flat that water can’t drain out of it when it rain, creating the world’s largest natural mirror. It’s also 5 times better for satellite calibration than the surface of the ocean, due to having an elevation measurement accuracy of 0.8 inches.

9. The Eiffel Tower still exists today because Choltitz, a German infantry general, refused direct orders from Hitler to destroy it.

10. The Golden Temple in India (which is regarded as the holiest site in Sikhism), runs a free kitchen that feeds more than 100,000 visitors a day regardless of race, class, or religion.

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11 Manta ray sanctuaries

Manta ray sanctuaries

Indonesia created manta ray sanctuaries upon realizing each manta ray brings lifetime tourism income of $1 million.

12. More people have died climbing Table Mountain in Cape Town than have been killed by Everest. Poor planning, dehydration and even losing concentration while taking selfies are to blame.

13. When the Grand Canyon divided the local squirrel population, they evolved into two different species. Despite being separated only by the Colorado River and remaining extremely similar in appearance, they are now so genetically incompatible that they can no longer interbreed.

14. The Burj Khalifa in Dubai is so tall, you can watch two sunsets in one day. You can watch the first one at the ground level, and the second by going to the top by taking an elevator.

15. In March 1848, Niagara Falls froze over and was completely blocked with ice. Factories shuttered, the US Cavalary marched on the dry riverbed, loggers collected ancient logs, and souvenir hunters collected relics from the War of 1812.

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16 Colosseum


In 86 A.D., the Colosseum was filled with water to stage a full naval battle.

17. On January 1st, 1976, the Hollywood sign was modified to read ‘Hollyweed’ after some pranksters added $50 of fabric to it.

18. The Hollywood Walk of Fame star for Muhammad Ali is the only one that’s placed on a wall and not on the ground because Ali “did not want the name of Muhammad to be stepped on.”

19. The Great Sphinx of Giza is so old that its first restoration dates to 1400 B.C., when it was already a thousand years old.

20. The Tower of London’s ravens are enlisted as soldiers of the Kingdom. As in the case with soldiers, the ravens can be dismissed for unsatisfactory conduct. Raven George (Enlisted 1977-1986) lost his appointment to the Crown and was retired to Wales for attacking and destroying TV aerials.

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21 Notre-Dame Cathedral

Notre-Dame Cathedral

The Notre-Dame Cathedral features a carving of a knight fleeing from a rabbit, symbolizing cowardice. This carving inspired the Rabbit of Caerbannog scene in Monty Python and the Holy Grail.

22. If you clap your hands at the base of a Chichen Itza pyramid, the echo you hear back sounds similar to chirps made by birds.

23. The Taj Mahal was covered with a huge scaffold during World War 2 to make it look like a stockpile of Bamboo to protect it from German Bombers. This was done again during 1965 and 1971, when Pakistan waged wars against India.

24. The whitewashed village of Juzcar, Spain used 4,000 liters of paint to turn the entire village blue for the release of Smurfs (2011). After the movie had been released, residents voted to keep it blue as it had helped increase tourism.

25. The traffic on the Arc de Triomphe roundabout in Paris is so chaotic, insurance companies will always split the liability of an accident 50/50.

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