An intriguing headline scrolled across one of my news feeds Saturday.
It was: “These are the most dangerous tourist attractions in the U.S.”
My first thought on seeing the headline was why would anyone want to go to a dangerous tourist spot.
Tourist spots are supposed to attract people who are looking for something different from what they see everyday, something that is educational or something where you can let loose and be somebody you aren’t in the 8 to 5 routine.
Then I thought there are those who seek out thrilling things, heck even I bungee jumped years ago, and not once but twice.
So I went past the headline to see where the spots were and what the dangers are.
Imagine my surprise in seeing that the first spot was my home turf for 14 years. A place I loved and did not at all consider dangerous.
The Love Exploring website rated Volusia County beaches in Florida as the most “dangerous” beaches in the country.
All the years I lived there, the paper I worked for did, a semiregular, shark attack story that mentioned how the county claimed the “Shark Bite Capital of the World” title. But the stories were always about nonfatal shark attacks off the beaches of the Atlantic that touches the county boundary.
The chambers of commerce always played down that title and I never gave it any thought when I went out into the Atlantic. At one point, I lived only five blocks from the beach and spent a lot of free time at the beach and never so much as saw a shark,
What made the beaches in Volusia dangerous to me, was that cars were allowed on the beach so you really had to be careful when laying out on the sand or walking along the water.
But the website didn’t mention that.
Also when one goes to the beach and goes for a swim or even a knee-deep wade, remember you are invading shark’s and other creatures’ habitat. So, you have to be on your toes, so to speak.
Another touristy place on the list, that I have never understood the draw of is Death Valley National Park in California.
Now I love hot weather, but going to the hottest and driest place in the country to hike around the cracked earth and scorched rocks is not my idea of a good time.
Now a sight I did enjoy the majesty of that is listed as a dangerous draw is the Grand Canyon.
I loved the views and staring down a whole mile where the Colorado River cut through the walls of the gorge.
I remember telling my dad that I wanted to ride the donkey down to the floor of the abyss. But it apparently cost quite a bit to do that back then, because he said he would have to leave me with the park ranger to pay for the ride down. With that information, I agreed that I would rather continue on to California where Disneyland, Marineland and Knotts Berry Farm awaited rather than stay at the Grand Canyon with a donkey.
One of the listings confused me a bit as it is a stretch of highway.
Since when is a stretch of highway even if it is in Alaska, considered a tourist attraction just because it is featured on some television show.
I cannot imagine anyone driving hundreds of miles to go see a highway with nothing by space for miles and miles. It is 414 miles of almost nothingness. The website said, “There are only three opportunities to stop for fuel, plus there’s freezing Arctic weather, giant potholes and sometimes reduced-to-zero visibility.”
Well, woo-hoo, pack my bags and fill my tank. Who can pass up an adventure like that?
I bet a lot of people.
Welcome to the discussion.
Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
PLEASE TURN OFF YOUR CAPS LOCK.
Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.
Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.