How often do you do "touristy" stuff in your own city/vicinity?

In this thread (“What Would You Do As A Tourist in London?”), the OP writes:

I guess I take for granted that I can visit the Tower of London, the Houses of Parliament, Buckingham palace, et al, when I have the time, just as I suppose most New Yorkers think the Statue of Liberty is always going to be there waiting for them and they can go some day-- just not today.


This got me wondering how common this mindset is. I find it quite true for myself; Washington, DC is practically wall-to-wall monuments and for the most part I’ve only ever seen any of it on school field trips growing up. I used to go to the National Zoo a lot when I was working nights, because I lived nearby and nothing else was really open at 0700 in the morning when I got home. And I liked visiting the capybaras (that are no longer there :(). Otherwise, I have never set foot inside a Smithsonian Museum or federal building if I wasn’t there for a school field trip or, later, for work.

Anyways, I spend quite a bit of time in the city, but never doing any real “tourist” stuff unless I have guests who want to see that stuff. My wife works right on the Mall and only ever visits the Native American Museum (officially the “National Museum of the American Indian”) which is adjacent to her worksite to eat at the cafeteria (which is wonderful, by the way).

How often do you do “touristy” stuff in your own city or area, on your own impetus?

I also live just outside Washington DC, and I haven’t been downtown in at least 2 years–the last time was when a friend from LA came visiting. Before that, probably when my sister came with my niece and nephew… maybe 6 or 7 years ago? We did all the tourist stuff then. I’ve been to London more often in the past 10 years than DC.

Pretty much only when people visit. That way I avoid being jaded when I am obligated to do the tourist stuff.

We visit attractions fairly often (Rose Garden, Japanese Garden, Chinese Garden, Columbia Gorge, Mt. Hood, etc.), and we go on “AARP walks”, which takes groups through different neighborhoods in the city.

The top three “things to do” in my city are a space museum, a botanical garden and a state park. My wife and I go to the botanical garden fairly often, maybe once a month. The other two we go occasionally, usually when there are special exhibits or events there.

We’ve only been here two years and there’s lots of touristy stuff to do, so…I chose “Quite frequently”. Several times a summer, so far, and there’s stuff we still haven’t seen.

I currently live in the Sarasota Florida area. If “touristy” includes going to the Gulf beaches then I do touristy stuff a few times a week.

I’ve been up in the Arch several times in my life. I go to the Art Museum and Forest Park. We go to City Museum (not really a museum) at least once a year. Botanical Gardens has great summer concerts in a gorgeous floral setting. Cahokia mounds is even closer to my house, and a nice picnic spot. And yes, when out of town guests visit, that’s a perfect opportunity to go to these places, but I’ve done them just with family and local friends, too.

St. Louis and the Metro East doesn’t have much going on, but what’s here seems to be as much for residents as for tourists. It’s not like people are flocking here for the weather or history. I imagine most of the tourism is from Missouri and Illinois to watch sports (or occasionally chess). That and conferences like Strange Loop.

I enjoy an occasional visit to the zoo, some of the museums, the aquarium, theme parks and state parks in the area but not so much other touristy stuff like World of Coke, SkyView Atlanta (giant ferris wheel) or CNN Center, among others. All are within a 45 minute drive.

I voted “infrequently”.

Living out in the middle of nowhere, there really aren’t any touristy things to do. There are a couple of state parks and the Ingalls Homestead and other Ingalls sites in DeSmet but I’ve never been to them. I usually only go to DeSmet to do business at the courthouse since it’s our county seat.

I did go to the Terry Redlin Art Center once because my mom wanted to but I would have never gone otherwise.

Just being in San Francisco is touristy. I’m particularly fond of taking walks through tourist areas and just enjoying the sights. Yesterday I needed to have a bracelet repaired, so I took it to Chinatown, and got to experience a whole world built for tourists.

I frequently visit the Bay, or the ocean. I used to walk across the Golden Gate Bridge every once in a while, but its been several years. I typically only go to museums when I have someone come into the City to visit.

We live in a suburb of Boston. We take the kids into the city several times a year and go to things that would be considered touristy, like museums, the Boston Common and Public Garden, and historic sites. I grew up in Boston so I saw everything when I was a kid and it’s an easy way to fill a day with cheap or free stuff to do.

I voted other.

I’ve been to most of the touristy-type attractions in the Bay Area over the years, both on my own and with visitors. Not many places merit a return visit unless there’s a special exhibit or something.

I do go back to places like Point Reyes, Big Basin, The Pinnacles or Henry Coe to go hiking semi-regularly. And sometimes I’ll take a day trip along the coast just to enjoy the drive. I suppose those could be considered “touristy” but to me it’s just a benefit of living here.

I live outside of DC. I try to take my kids into DC once or twice a year (not counting the zoo trips) and go to different museums.

I do have the same tendency, and didn’t really do the tourist stuff that often in Cape Town until I moved away and visited it from afar.

Likewise I didn’t really do tourist things in S. Florida or Atlanta while I was living there. The San Francisco and Seattle areas are a little different. In both cases we’ve visited there as tourists before living there, so essentially a lot of the sights are already seen. In both locations we’ve tended to have a lot of visitors, and tend to catch the sights repeatedly as a result. No complaints. I enjoy most of them, and the kids love them.

Cleveland and Akron aren’t like DC, Boston, Philadelphia or New York. They don’t really have monuments and museums you have to visit just because you’re there. Aside from the Rock Hall, of course, which I go to every 5 years or so.

We have lovely zoos, an aquarium, art museums and one of the world’s top orchestras but really people that live here go to see that stuff all the time. Same for the sports and the restaurants - it’s all more for people coming in from the suburbs to enjoy than travelers!

One thing I DON’T do is Amish country tourism. Because my grandmother grew up Amish and I spent a lot of my life hanging out down there. I don’t know if people come from out of state to visit Amish Country or if it’s also just local suburbanites.

Anyway in short, all the tourist stuff there is to do here is for locals also.

Silicon Valley isn’t very touristy, but we like to take a cruise around now and then. We like to check out the HQ’s of the big behemoths - Google, Facebook, Apple, etc. We’re always surprised by who’s leasing which new huge office complex. Also, new construction around the Valley goes on at a tremendous pace so there’s always something new to amaze us.

Chicago. I’m a member of the Art Institute of Chicago, so I visit often. I also enjoy the various river and lake cruises during warm weather. I love getting out on the water but don’t have the money nor the desire to even dream of having a boat and there’s no way I’d want to even deal with the hassle. I"m off on Fridays, so I’ve had a couple of relaxing days with a couple of beers at the end of Navy Pier. I do avoid Navy Pier on weekends unless I’ve got a visitor with their heart set on it.

I take advantage of Groupon deals for an occasional trip to the top of the Sears Tower or Hancock during shoulder seasons. It’s nice to get the pictures for a humble brag, since I know I’ll be teased by friends in warm weather climates during the endless winter.

I think I’ll join the Chicago Architecture Foundation this fall and take some of their walking tours of the city.

Not really. We live in a ski resort area, and I don’t like to ski. My Wife does though.

Not big into camping anymore either. I LIVE in the woods. If I want an outside fire I make one. We do that a few times a year.

Not a hunter either. I just love living in the mountains with lots of space.

I voted other. I build museum exhibits, so I go to the local museums fairly often.

Other than that, I go to a state park that is close to my house to take the dog for walkies.