Not every city or town is as thriving as other. Either poor city planning, the natural habitat isn't the most livable, or it just seems straight up sketchy.
Whatever the case may be, no one seems to have gone to these place on purpose, it just kind of happened.
We went to Ask Reddit to hear about the worst places people have ever been.
Redditor upmed2006 asked:
"What is the sh*ttiest place you've visited?"
You have hold off on adding these to your bucket list.
The Salton Sea.
"The Salton Sea made me sad."
"There was so much hope around this place. Now if you visit: it's a very poor town, the sand sucks your shoes off and smells awful, and the stench of dead fish permeates the air."
"Now their only bar presents as a David Lynch nightmare if you go."
"Salton Sea is amazing - it's the closest I've ever seen to a post-apocalyptic wasteland. And due to the fact that most of the rotting abandoned buildings are from the 1960s, it's eerily similar to a Fallout game."
"This documentary can save you a trip there, but it doesn't quite capture the feeling of driving through a rotting ghost town in 115F heat, completely empty except for a couple of meth heads staring at you from under an awning."
"I've been kinda fascinated with this place since driving through when I was road tripping in college. Apparently it was created by accident."
"At one time it had thriving game fishery of landlocked saltwater fish, as well as all kinds of marine invertebrates and stuff that hitched a ride in people's bilge water and the bottom of boats. All in the middle of what used to be desert, far from the sea, all the salt having come from salt still left In the soil from ancient times mixed with freshwater from the Colorado River. All slowly dying as they let it dry up and return to desert. (hence the smell, as the tilapia, which are the most salt tolerant, die off). I'm def going to check out that documentary. Thanks!"
"Actually took a boat out there some 40+ years ago. Wasn't much better then. The stench. Dead palm trees half rotted up the trunks stuck in the middle of that disgusting oily looking water."
"My SIL fell in the nasty water by accident. Was wearing a lot of silver jewelry (was the style). Not in the muck more than 5 minutes tops, all her jewelry turned coal black. Didn't stay long after."
"Why we even went is a mystery to this day."
Corporate office in decline.
"Ever been into an office building where maintenance quit and the real estate company hasn't hired replacements in six months? Every broad office floor of cubicles looks like it's in a zombie movie."
"Half of the fluorescent tube lights are dead or flickering from a bad ballast. Some places the air is a bit too cold and dry, while in others its too hot and humid. Enough to make you think there might be mold growing on the walls. It's like a massive fat bloated man was breathing his stinking breath on your neck."
"Oh and the bathrooms. Ohhhhh the bathrooms. I'm not even going to describe that. I'd rather not revisit the memory."
"The breakroom sinks weren't bad though. But then, people are more likely to take care of things they actually have to use. It's not as 'fire and forget' as a men's room. Except for the one breakroom where I felt someone mixed up the two types of rooms and figured 'a drain is a drain'."
"A corporation in the final stages of decline is a sad creature."
"I've always said that the most important person in any office building is the janitor."
"In any business large enough to employ full time janitorial/maintenance people they are what keeps the company from falling apart. I always treat them with more respect than I do my bosses and try to get on their good side."
"When I was a teenager my dad the head of a maintenance department for a business that owned a skyscraper in our city. He and two other maintenance men took care of light bulbs, decorating for holidays and shoveling snow and salting sidewalks. The biggest thing they did all day though was adjust the air conditioning and heat for the 300-400 middle aged female employees most of whom were going through 'the change.'"
"Those ladies knew what a pain it was and would do things like buy the guys lunch a couple of times a week and bake them cookies or make them fudge. The coolest was that the company gave my dad and his maintenance men first dips on concert, musical, Disney on Ice and other kid shows and sports tickets that they didn't use for clients. Saw a lot of concerts and hockey games as a teen for free thanks to dad's job."
Every horror movie wrapped in one.
"It felt like I stumbled into the movie set for House of Wax, Children of the Corn and Deliverance all in one place. They had a hair salon/mechanic/courthouse/ jail all in one building. The judge's wife was the hair stylist, the judge was also the mechanic and the sheriff was his son."
"Lived in Arkansas my whole life and never heard of Zinc, must be reaaally tiny. We do have Snow, Toad Suck, and Booger Hollow, Arkansas too."
"Others have pointed out some other good ones: Smackover, Bald Knob, Weiner, Flippin, Possom Grape, Blue Ball and Goobertown are some of the others. Yes real communities/towns in Arkansas."
"Population around 100 per Google. Also first thing that pops up is an article where the residents disclaim any association with the KKK and share their town's 'true history.' Sounds like a terrifying place."
"All the references to the KKK is because some klan member hails from Zinc."
"Per Wikipedia, 'A chapter of the Ku Klux Klan operates a training and information center in Zinc.'"
"For me it is Hope, Arkansas. I was a kid and my family stayed the night at the Holiday Inn on our way to somewhere else. When we checked in they gave us a complimentary fly swatter."
"I had to stop over night in Hope moving from Michigan to Texas. All I wanted was a beer after a miserable 14 hour drive in a U-Haul. Went to a Mexican restaurant and asked the server what was on draft. 'Dry County' he said. 'Is that like an IPA?' I asked. He looked confused, I sure as f*ck was confused until I figured out what the real meaning was. I had never heard of a dry county before and I was legit offended."
Roads to nothing but sand.
"Duqm, Oman. Two hotels, a pizza hut, and a DFC (Duqm Fried Chicken). Also can't forget the hundreds of miles of new roads that led to... more sand and dirt."
"Sh*t was built like the first five minutes of a Sim City 2000 game."
"Back in the day Duqm had the only decent internet connection within a 500 km radius, so at least had that going for it. Also an hour drive from Khaluf and Ras Madrakah, some of the most gorgeous stretches of coast in the country. But yeah, the whole concept of Duqm is as if an urban planner jotted down some notes on a napkin whilst high"
"I just went there on Google Earth. It looks like they planned to build a major port and a city to serve it, but then gave up."
"I was helping friends move across the country and I called my husband one night when we stopped. He said, 'Where have you gotten to?' and I said, 'I don't know but it's the ugliest place I've ever seen in my life,' and he said, 'Oh, you've gotten to Midland Odessa,' and he was correct."
"I have seen a lot of the world and Midland Odessa, Texas, is by far the most terrible place I've ever looked at."
"I just popped in on google maps and I can confirm. Two things that struck me:"
- "The parking lot to building ratio is way too high. Lots of asphalt."
- "I went to downtown Midland, and it looks like it was built by someone who had only seen pictures of cities. Like there are just a bunch of office buildings plopped down and no other businesses."
Armpit of America.
"Gary, Indiana. Apologies to those who live there, but it's kinda like the armpit of America. It reeks of a town that was once a cool place to be but has just been left to the wayside."
"Came here to add Gary, Indiana. It's like New Jersey was concentrated, dipped in Detroit, and shat out the worst part of Chicago."
"I've got family in South Bend, the joke is depending on which direction the wind is blowing you can smell Gary in either South Bend or Chicago. Truly is a sh*thole."
If you're taking a trip anytime soon, you might want to avoid these place.
Or maybe check them out and see just how terrible they really are.
Want to "know" more? Never miss another big, odd, funny, or heartbreaking moment again. Sign up for the Knowable newsletter here.
There is so much to know and see and learn from being on the web. The amount of apps and sites to visit is endless. And so much traffic is overrun by nonsense that lead to red herrings on ways to spend a good life. T
That is why it is so important to share the places we should see that don't have enough spotlight. More often than not we're missing the best the web has to offer. So let's talk amongst ourselves.
Redditor u/SauloJr wanted to shine a light on a few online sites that need some worthy attention, by asking:
What useful unknown website do you wish more people knew about?
I don't have a ton of sites I visit. The internet unnerves me, but I'm willing to learn from those who navigate it. So give me some ideas. My pen and paper are ready.
StrikesVintage Vhs GIF by vhspositiveGiphy
"https://www.blitzortung.org/ This one lets you see where lightning strikes in real time! Can be reassuring to see the lightning get further and further away, it's also pretty neat in general!"
"Tineye and Foto Forensics. Do you want to know if an image is shopped, cropped or otherwise altered? Using these two tools you've got a good chance of finding out. Tineye is reverse image search on steroids and foto forensics provides free image analysis tools."
"Project Gutenberg. Taking all the books that are copyright free and making digital copies available. In college and the school wants you to buy the complete works of Shakespeare for $40? Forget that noise! Free! https://www.gutenberg.org/"
"See also: Librivox, for free audiobook versions."
"ID Ransomware https://id-ransomware.malwarehunterteam.com/ - If you ever get Ransomware in your computer you can take a encrypted file and out it into this website and it will tell you if any security researchers have cracked it so you can get your files back. And if it hasn't been cracked you can sign up for email notification so when it is cracked you get an email. I haven't used it but someday it might save me or you."
Do you understand?In Love Flirt GIF by OriginalsGiphy
"Deepl.com - Best translator I've found. It's quite intuitive and even translates idioms and slang. They've got around 20 languages as of their most recent update."
That lightning strike thing is a great idea. Not that I dodge strikes often, or that I need shelter from them but I it's good to know how to avoid them. And always good to translate. Continue...
Read ThroughOh No Help GIF by CBeebies HQGiphy
"Terms of Service, Didn't Read summarizes terms of service and rates them for privacy."
Do you Hear what I hear?
"I ADORE mynoise.net. It's an archive of customizable sound generators with everything from music, nature sounds, sound cancelling, ambiances, and meditative drones etc. I focus best with some kind of white noise, and this website has a ton to choose from and it is free."
"My favorite feature is the customizable, animated sliders so you can listen to storms that ebb and grow automatically. It is great for TTRPGs too. The sound engineer who runs it has put together all kinds of specific settings like churches, cities, forests, faires, dungeons, etc. Seriously, people should check it out."
"If you're interested in languages or trying to learn a new language I recommend Forvo.com, you can look up a word and hear native speakers pronounce it. It's based on volunteers uploading their recordings of the various words. It's pretty useful for when you're working on your pronunciation."
Finding the X
"https://www.rome2rio.com Gives you full directions from any two places from door to door including trains, busses and ferries. With options to fly to nearby places and take transit to get to your final destination."
Wash Awayerase men in black GIF by Animation Domination High-DefGiphy
"remove.bg is a great way to remove any background."
"I was gonna write this, but then I saw your comment. Absolutely amazing website, works very well."
"twoseven.xyz -Allows you to watch and sync netflix, prime video, downloaded videos, streaming from browser, youtube with your friends while opting to be on voice/video call with them for FREE and NO ADS. Prime video is kinda glitchy in this website tho. The rest seem perfect."
"PS: Both you and your friend need a netflix account. Basically, both cannot use the same account if the subscription is for a single device only."
"Enjoy cartoons? Please enjoy every cartoon ever made all in one place! - https://www.wcofun.com/playlist"
"End of Evangelion and Death & Rebirth in the OG English dubs and not the horrible netflix redubs. Haven't been able to see these since I lost my dvds years ago. You just made my day thank you so so much. ❤️"
Reading is Fundamental
"https://openlibrary.org/ - You can borrow books across a crap ton of different library systems without having to register for them."
"Our fourth grade teacher made all the nerdy way-above-everyone-else-in-reading bookworms in our class (including me) use this site, bc the one everyone else used was targeted to younger kids, like fourth graders. It's amazing to say the least."
"everynoise.com : This website contains every obscure sub genre of music imaginable. You can find some great music you've never heard of there."
"Also music-map.com : Search an artist/band and it generates a map of similar artists/bands with proximity indicating more fan base crossover. I've tested it with the most obscure stuff I know and it always finds suggestions."
"insert email"Danny Devito Work GIF by QuickBooksGiphy
10 minute mail provides a temporary email address for you to cut and paste into those pesky "insert email" to sign up or read the rest of the story or whatever. https://10minutemail.com/"
From all over...
"http://radio.garden/visit - you can hear radios live from all around the world. (I recommend accessing on computer or installing the app on mobile)"
"I love this site and was just about to post it when I saw you already did! This is one of my favorite rainy day websites, where I just scroll around through radio stations in England and Ireland and Australia and Japan and so forth. Great recommendation!"
"Depending on who you are determines if its useful or not, but https://rsoe-edis.org/ is a very informative site of the on-goings of the world. The event map is interesting to explore."
"Such a tragedy: "Traffic incident - Public road accident United Kingdom - M6 fire destroys lorry full of Birdseye potato waffles." Edit: For anyone concerned here's more information and some photos from the scene"
The Best Bypass
"https://12ft.io/ It bypasses all paywalls and removes all ads from any webpage I have found. Show me a 10ft paywall, I'll show you a 12ft ladder. No install, just copy and paste your link."
"I believe that ads and SEO killed the soul of the web. Websites can throw on popups, email captures, newsletters, inline ads, etc. We have to wade through all this crap just to find out the content is some click bait optimized garbage. It's abuse of your brain. As users of the internet, we have no recourse."
"We have to wait until a new site the publishes similar content to come up, and just hope to god that they aren't as bad. It's completely one sided. I want 12ft to be the suite of tools that allows us users of the internet to fight back against these malicious practices. It starts with a Chrome extension, but it'll grow to much more as long as y'all want it."
Follow the DataHappy GIFGiphy
"https://haveibeenpwned.com - Allows you to see if your online accounts have been released in a data breach. You can also get email alerts if you've been in a breach."
Find the Knowledge
"Sci-hub get (almost) any research paper for free, just copy the link/DOI of the document and it'll show you the pdf."
"Library genesis free pdf's of math/physics/chemistry/biology/medicine/etc, finished my degree thanks to this one, a bunch of times a book of a course was just too hard to find or incredible expensive to but, but in libgen I got the digital pdf of the book in a few seconds, very neat."
If someone can read my terms of stuff, I'll pay everything. These are great ideas and sites to have on hand. Make a list. I did. Just in case.
Want to "know" more? Never miss another big, odd, funny, or heartbreaking moment again. Sign up for the Knowable newsletter here.
Foreigners Describe The Most Disrespectful Thing They've Seen An American Tourist Do In Their Country
Why are Americans so stubborn in our behaviors when we travel? Would you go into a stranger's home and just put your feet up on the coffee table? Apparently the answer for many of you is yes.
When I am preparing for foreign travel I do a ton of research first. I want to make sure I know as much as I can, as to have the safest and most enjoyable experience possible. I also want to understand customs and the culture as to not be rude or leave a lasting bad impression.
And from the sounds of it, I'm an American minority on this topic.
Redditor u/Bugginette wanted Americans to listen up so that the next time we travel, we leave a better impression. So they inquired:
Non Americans of Reddit, what is the weirdest thing you have seen an American tourist do that would be considered very disrespectful/inappropriate in your country?
The only time I really caused a scene while traveling was when I was with a theatre troupe. We went to Amsterdam to tour a show. And let's just say we might have "indulged" in some cannabis, and run amok in the towns square for a bit. You could feel the disdain from the locals. Sorry, y'all. We'll do better next time.
Thieves...Jurassic Park Dinosaur GIF by VidiotsGiphy
"When I was in France a couple of American tourists tried to sneak out of the Paris Catacombs with a bone they had stolen."
"Not buy their round. In a pub in Ireland. When the pub round system had been explained to them. And they had happily taken drinks from everyone. And when it was their round, and everyone had empty glasses and it was mentioned that "Think it's your round..." and they responded " I think I'm good now thanks" Mortified for bringing them with me!! (and yes I bought the round for everyone else on their behalf.)"
"I'm an American but I was visiting England and touring the Tower of London. There was a cannon behind a rope with a "Do not touch or climb" sign. This American woman lifted the rope and told her kid (maybe 7 years old) to go sit on the cannon so she could take a picture. The KID protested and said the sign said no... The woman said she didn't care, and ordered her kid to do it or she'd ground them."
Hush up Karen!!Karen GIF by moodmanGiphy
"I overheard the guy standing in front of me in the queue at mc D's having a meltdown:"
"WHAT DO YOU MEAN YOU DON'T ACCEPT AMERICAN DOLLARS. THIS IS A MCDONALD'S!!!" This was in Poland, Europe."
U Crazy Girl!
"An American exchange student who complained to me in anger that book stores in Germany have so many books in German. I mean, it's not unusual here for every book store to even have a small section of books in other languages including English so it's not like she never got to buy a book here she could read."
How do you not research the currency? It's literally the FIRST thing you should be doing. For the love of God. There really should be a bad behavior travel ban list. It's not that arduous a task to not act like a fool. Oof.
Take It!Megan Mullally Lol GIF by Will & GraceGiphy
"I was in Rome and a lady was confused why the confectionery stand man wouldn't take her dollars."
"I was working a bar in Scotland. There was a woman one night with her daughter and she refused to pay with anything other than American cash. It was a super uncomfortable situation, me trying to explain how stupid it all was, her daughter (who I think was living in Scotland) was trying to calm her down and trying to pay but the mother kept pulling the her hand away from the card machine saying "you people love our money, our money is more important than yours."
"She kicked on for a solid 5 to 10 minutes, her daughter ended up paying and leaving. Then she had a go at me for embarrassing her daughter and she even left a review on trip advisor explaining the situation, she explained it perfectly literally wrote herself as the bag guy in the review. Freaking mind boggling how delusional this bird was."
"Haven't you planned your trip?"
"Probably only weird but when on a flight back to the UK from the US, the American lady sat next to me, started asking questions about England about 40 minutes before landing and not just like any "local recommendations" but really basic stuff like what currency do we use. It seemed like she had got on the plane knowing absolutely nothing about the UK, which blew my mind."
"Not just from a "haven't you planned your trip?" POV but having the confidence to do that. She seemed to think it was a small place and everything she wanted to see would be in front of her hotel. She was very polite and lovely about it in a naive way though."
To what end lady?
"In Canada some stores will accept American cash as payment, but by law have to still give Canadian change. I worked in a city that got a lot of American tourists, and it was crazy how often someone would get really frustrated with us for not giving them American change. I had someone even accuse me of lying about it being the law. To what end lady?"
"It's been pointed out that this may not actually be a law, it may just be the rules at the store or some accounting thing. It's been like ten years so the details are fuzzy."
Moron!!Unimpressed Loop GIFGiphy
"In Australia, shook a koala out of a tree at a wildlife park."
"I was at a lavender farm in the South of France a few years ago. Two coach loads of American tourists pull up, they all got out on the standard "you won't get long enough to really see this place" type tour. One lady very proudly states she is an expert on lavender and that this place was "cute but it's all fake, the lavender isn't the right color." There were bees and other insects all over it, the whole farm smelled amazing and there was a harvest taking place! It was very real."
Sensible Shoes People
"I live in Norway and 30 minutes from my house there is this mountain called Pulpit Rock. It is the biggest tourist attraction nearby. It is not the most difficult trail, but it is pretty steep, and every year (before covid) I would see American women struggling because they were wearing flip flops or high heels."
"Not offensive or inappropriate, but I really want to talk about it. Once in the airport, coming back to Australia in where I'm from in the middle of summer, I saw a dad and his 2 children, all 3 of them wearing full winter coats. The dad said to the both of them "try to stay warm, it's going to be cold outside."
SlowerGIF by Brett EldredgeGiphy
"Repeat themselves over and over more slowly and more loudly each time. No witch, it's not we're thick or hard of hearing. We speak a different language, here."
"German here. Never go to visit any concentration camp museum without understanding that in less than 10 minutes your blood will start to boil because of how disrespectful tourists can be. It's unbelievable."
"I used to work in a high end restaurant. Five or six course meals are the standard. So people take their time to eat, chat and enjoy the evening for at least two to three hours. It is normal to have half an hour in between meals. If we would serve faster the guest would complain about the food being served too fast."
"Anyway, this table of mostly local people plus one American woman being very loud with a thick, i guess, New York accent was complaining after three minutes after every course where her food was. First i explained the above. The rest of the table was also getting a bit awkward about her behavior. She kept complaining though. Telling how incredibly disappointed she was."
"I kept explaining that the food we serve is freshly made, it takes time to prepare. And that the whole idea is to enjoy the evening in with the people you are. She just would get concept and react with so much disbelieve. Lady you are abroad, if you want to stuff your face with food in under five minutes go to a fast food chainboy even better stay at home."
Not the Worst
"Not exactly dumb but just being a**holes. My mom's job is to deal with tourists. Every other person from other countries at least tries to be either nice or neutral. The American guy asked if she understood him. She answers in english (better than my own) and the guy just asked that question a few more times with a shit eating grin. Apparently not the worst American she had encountered. Not weird but disrespectful as hell."
"I was in a tour group in Tajikistan and we were inside a locals house who had invited us in for tea and he was telling us about his family and how many children they have etc. The only American in the group piped up and asked 'what contraception does your wife use, does she use herbs or something?"
"Everyone was just aghast and he politely avoided the question, then there was a long awkward silence. And so the she asked AGAIN! At that point another tour member interjected and said 'ok, I think it's time for us to leave, thanks for having us."
Too Fareugene levy comedy GIF by Schitt's CreekGiphy
"The best one I've heard was the American tourist complaining that they built Edinburgh castle so far from the train station."
"But where is the summit?"
"When I came down from the Fuji summit after a 8 hour climb and 4 hour descent with 3 layers of clothing to protect myself from the weather, an American with a selfie stick, in t-shirt and shorts asked me where mount Fuji was. I told him we are on mount Fuji, it's a big mountain/volcano. "But where is the summit?" I pointed to the summit and told him it's about 8 hours that way. This guy thought he could just come in with his selfie stick, grab a few quick selfies on the summit and return to Tokyo lol."
American Karens are just running a global mess. I mean who thinks this is decent, human behavior? Y'all need some serious discipline. And Americans are the first ones to point out bad behavior of visitors here. Help it make sense Lord.
Want to "know" more? Never miss another big, odd, funny, or heartbreaking moment again. Sign up for the Knowable newsletter here.