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‘Boring’ Stonehenge and ‘ghost-free’ Westminster Abbey: Surprising visitor reviews of UK’s top attractions

A few visitors were less than impressed by their days out in the UK, but many of these attractions were rated highly by Which? readers

‘Boring’ Stonehenge and ‘ghost-free’ Westminster Abbey: Surprising visitor reviews of UK’s top attractions

Unimpressed and plain sarcastic holidaymakers have left some baffling reviews on Tripadvisor about UK tourist attractions.

The UK is steeped in history and visitor attractions such as the Titanic Belfast and the Tower of London bring this vibrant past to life. But not everyone is wowed by the country’s tourist offerings.

A browse through Tripadvisor not only shows glowing reviews written by visitors who enjoyed their days out, but also blistering comments from those who were seriously underwhelmed. Disgruntled daytrippers didn’t hold back in their criticisms.

Yet all of the attractions that received amusing comments scored 75% or more overall in our recent member survey of historic UK attractions. So perhaps some of these gripes should be taken with a pinch of salt.

The below reviews are just isolated opinions, so be sure to check out our survey results to gain a bigger and fairer picture.


5,402 people ranked 100 UK attractions on value for money, food and drink offerings, lack of crowds and more. See the full historic attraction survey results


UK attraction reviews

Royal Yacht Britannia
Royal Yacht Britannia

The Royal Yacht Britannia allows visitors to gawp at the Queen’s former quarters and dine like royalty. However, one reviewer had a pretty ‘rough’ experience onboard the ship. 

The reviewer wrote: ‘Got sick visiting the Royal Yacht. Water very choppy and thought the Queen would have specified a better boat. No Costa or McDonald’s on board, so quite disappointed. Will not be back.’

Note – the RYB is not affected by movement from waves as it’s locked within a harbour.

Which? members disagree. They rated it so highly that its overall score was 90%. They loved the ‘impressive’ engine room and seeing how the royal family relaxed in their downtime.

Tower of London
Tower of London

The Tower of London scored five out of five for entertainment in our historic attractions survey. With revelations about England’s gruesome past, dazzling jewels and friendly Beefeaters to keep guests entertained, it’s hardly surprising. 

Yet one visitor took to Tripadvisor to express the opposite opinion. Look away now Queen Elizabeth, you’re not going to like what they said about your jewels.

They wrote: ‘It’s just 4 walls and a gate’. They added that the Crown Jewels looked like they resembled a cheap accessory that could be found on the high street.

Brutal.

Find out what Which? readers thought of The Tower of London in our historic attraction survey results

Titanic Belfast
Titanic Belfast

The Titanic Belfast uses multimedia – from smells of the shipyard to special effects – to bring Belfast’s shipbuilding heritage to life, and to chart the creation of the RMS Titanic and its tragic destruction.

Hundreds of thousands of people visit this fascinating attraction every year and Which? readers rated it in the top 10 historic attractions in the UK.

Not everyone’s a fan, though. One tourist wrote on Tripadvisor: ‘Bored out of my skull. So boring I do not like history at all! So I advise do not go or you will know what boredom is. Trust me you will soon know what it is.’

Why would you visit if you don’t enjoy history? The mind boggles.

Westminster Abbey
Westminster Abbey

Westminster Abbey is not only a place of worship and royal weddings, it’s a World Heritage Site, founded in 960AD by Benedictine monks. Despite its stunning architecture and fascinating history, this review is proof that you really can’t please everybody. Fancy not being able to do knee slides in a church? How strict.

The review reads: ‘Big church, dead famous people, cue [sic] forever to get in, rip off to get in, can’t talk loud when you do, can’t do knee slides on the shiny bits and saw no ghosts whatsoever.’

Which? members agreed that there are sizable queues and crowds, but awarded the abbey five out of five for engagement. See how it ranked overall in our historic attraction survey results

Stonehenge
Stonehenge

After visiting prehistoric Stonehenge in Wiltshire, one tourist was a little underwhelmed by the mystery of the stone circle. Perhaps they’d have been better off staying at home.

They wrote: ‘Honestly I cannot believe these rocks haven’t been drilled down already. Such a boring site. The rocks have no meaning behind them, it doesn’t matter how they got there. Just a money making scheme. Worst trip ever.’

Another added that it was just ‘a big heap of stones’ and ‘absolutely boring’.

Despite this scathing review, Which? members awarded Stonehenge a score of 79%, which is a combination of overall satisfaction and likelihood to recommend it to others. Many praised the facilities and one commented that the audio guide was ‘exceptional’.

Planning a trip to see Stonehenge? Make sure you check out the best and worst rated motorway service stations, to plan your journey if you’re going by car. 

Durham Cathedral
Durham Cathedral

Durham Cathedral may have wowed medieval pilgrims, but not this particular modern-day tourist.

Their review read: Old […] They should really consider demolishing this monstrosity and replacing it with a clean modern building.’

Note to reviewer: a trip to see a brand-new block of flats might be more to your taste?

In contrast, many Which? members lauded it. One said: ‘A magnificent building in a splendid location.’

Durham Cathedral was rated as a good-value day out in the UK. Find out where else was rated as a value-for-money day out to help you make school summer holiday plans.

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