Created By: lazarus73 on June 13, 2012 Last Edited By: lazarus73 on June 18, 2012

Abandoned Tourist Attraction

A place that should have a lot of tourists doesn't.

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Trope
If you have ever been to a popular monument or tourist attraction, you were probably one in a sea of people. But if you see that oft-visited place in a work of fiction, it may well be completely abandoned, except for a couple of characters who are portrayed against the tourist attraction in a dramatic shot. This may make for a visually appealing shot, but it may also leave a viewer wondering where the hell the other people are.

Do not confuse with Abandoned Area, which is when a location is portrayed as empty (and justified within the story) for some dramatic effect such as After the End.


Examples

Film
  • In National Treasure, Nicolas Cage visits a strangely abandoned Lincoln Memorial.
  • After the heist in Ocean's Eleven, the titular eleven meet at the fountains at the Bellagio, a place that should have lots of people watching the show.
  • In X-Men: First Class, Erik and Charles play chess on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial, which is again devoid of visitors.

Live Action Television
  • When The Brady Bunch visits the Grand Canyon they're the only ones there. Later a couple of Native Americans show up.
  • In the Bones episode "Soccer Mom in the Mini-Van", Bones and Booth sit at an abandoned Washington Monument.
  • April and Andy from Parks and Recreation make an impromptu road trip to the Grand Canyon, where they stop at one of the most popular viewpoints on the South Rim. They are accompanied by no one.

Western Animation
  • In Madagascar 3, the animals make it all the way to the front gate of the Central Park Zoo, which is abandoned.

Real Life
  • Dave Barry once took a tour of several rural Japanese landmarks. Tiny one-man shrines and so forth. He was amazed at the views and serenity of the natural world, and remarked that in America this place would be bumper-to-bumper with cars. His guide told him that the Japanese prefer to take bus tours in groups. The roads in this part of Japan are too small, steep, or whatever, for buses.
Community Feedback Replies: 11
  • June 13, 2012
    lazarus73
    This is my first YKTTW. I feel like this should be a trope, but I can't think of any more examples. Maybe characters visiting a highly-trafficked scenic point at a popular national park? Also, if somebody could clean up whatever I did wrong with the folder control, that would be awesome.
  • June 13, 2012
    bananasloth
    cleaned up the folders! I'm not sure if this is related to the trope Abandoned Area. It looks like it's a subtrope, but the examples in that one are usually settings for horrors etc. Is this trope just places that look unrealistic without all the people? I'm not sure I understand entirely.
  • June 13, 2012
    lazarus73
    "Is this trope just places that look unrealistic without all the people?"

    Yes. Anyone who's ever been to the Lincoln Memorial knows that it is crawling with tourists. Yet in the X-Men movie noted above, Erik and Charles are totally alone when they are playing chess on the steps. There is no way this could ever happen in Real Life, but of course on movies and TV they do this because they want the characters carefully framed against some well-known or striking backdrop, without any irritating tourists or visitors to ruin the shot.
  • June 13, 2012
    bananasloth
    ah, I see. This still might not count as I have never been to Washington or know how many people visit the Monument. And this scene I think is some time in the evening so it might be justified:
  • June 13, 2012
    randomsurfer
    When The Brady Bunch visits the Grand Canyon they're the only ones there. Later a couple of Native Americans show up.
  • June 16, 2012
    lazarus73
    In Madagascar 3, the animals make it all the way to the front gate of the Central Park Zoo, which is abandoned.
  • June 16, 2012
    NateTheGreat
    Real Life Example:

    Dave Barry once took a tour of several rural Japanese landmarks. Tiny one-man shrines and so forth. He was amazed at the views and serenity of the natural world, and remarked that in America this place would be bumper-to-bumper with cars. His guide told him that the Japanese prefer to take bus tours in groups. The roads in this part of Japan are too small, steep, or whatever, for buses.
  • June 16, 2012
    LeeM
    Not sure the Grand Canyon examples really count. Sure, the most famous parts like the National Park area and the Skywalk are heavily visited, but the Canyon does have 400 miles of rim, and if everyone else is visiting the famous bits the rest must be deserted.
  • June 16, 2012
    lazarus73
    I can't speak to the Brady Bunch example, but on Parks and Recreation, they were visiting the main scenic point by the east entrance, where the souvenir store is. Highly trafficked.
  • June 16, 2012
    randomsurfer
    In this Brady scene they just drive up to the edge of the canyon and go to a scenic point; there's nobody else in sight. IDK whether it's a particularly busy area normally.
  • June 18, 2012
    chico
    Bad examples deleted.
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