Cheap alternatives to popular attractions: how to plan a budget-friendly and exciting trip

By Tetiana PavlichenkoDec 28, 2023 09:17 AMBudget trips
Cheap alternatives to popular attractions: how to plan a budget-friendly and exciting trip
Don't despair if you can't visit the most iconic sights: find an equally impressive alternative. Source: Image Jean-Philippe Fourier/Pixabay

Intending to visit the most famous sights and tourist spots, you should understand that the locations sought after by travelers require a good deal of money. But not always the most popular is irreplaceable. You can see a different side of a destination if you choose cheaper alternatives to popular tourist spots and still save well.

Expensive is not necessarily the best

Cheap alternatives to popular attractions: how to plan a budget-friendly and exciting trip
Combine a gastrotour with exploring the local culture instead of dining at an expensive restaurant. Source: Image user32212/Pixabay

A cheap alternative to expensive entertainment doesn't mean you'll get a worse experience. They are often more unique and memorable than the tourist-trodden trails. It's also a way to delve deeper into local culture and traditions, better explore your surroundings, and form a more detailed opinion of your chosen travel destination.

There are plenty of great tours that allow for a personalized travel experience, but do so much more cheaply than the common routes. Tripadvisor, for example, offers insight into attractions that can be used to replace expensive activities with cheaper but equally exciting alternatives.

What to replace sought-after itineraries with?

A popular destination in Europe for gastronomic delights is Italy. You can't say you've been to this country if you haven't enjoyed heartily the amazing Italian cuisine. Yes, it is very tasty, very popular and just as expensive. For example, an original 5-course dinner at an Italian restaurant will cost about $300 per person. Instead, you can go on an entire gastronomic tour in the Trastevere neighborhood for $120 per person, which includes many tastings at the locals' favorite eateries.

Paris is world famous for its attractions, and museums hold a place of honor among them. Getting the fullest experience of the Louvre or the Orsay Museum can be done on a VIP tour, but this treat costs $226. There is a more favorable and unconventional alternative to these famous sights. Instead, you can book an artist-guided tour of Belleville. You'll experience street art and admire murals for only $39.50 per person.

Cheap alternatives to popular attractions: how to plan a budget-friendly and exciting trip
You don't have to book an expensive cruise to see the sights of London from the water. Source: Image Dimitris Vetsikas/Pixabay

One of London's must-do experiences is a cruise along the winding Thames. Such a cruise with dinner costs $159. You can replace it by reserving a seat on a high-speed inflatable boat. You sail the same route and see the same sights - the Parliament Building, Shakespeare's Globe Theater, the London Eye Ferris wheel and much more, but spend $70 per person. At the same time, part of the route will pass at high speeds and with steep turns, so fans of thrills will like this option even more.

There are also many interesting sights and popular routes for traveling in the U.S., which can be found a profitable alternative. For example, tourists love the island of Oahu for scuba diving, but a private snorkeling tour on a yacht costs $1,956 per group. But there are more economical but equally impressive snorkeling excursions, such as Turtle Canyons from Waikiki. You'll spend $85 for one person, but you'll also be able to admire impressive marine life, see dolphins and flying fish, and in the wintertime, humpback whales. Agreed, such a cheap alternative to popular attractions is no less impressive.

To the list of popular for travel cities in the USA should also include the southern port Charleston, where sunset boat trips around the harbor are in special demand. A private boat cruise costs about $500 per group. An eco boat cruise to Morris Island, on the other hand, costs $56 for one. Along the way, you'll observe marine life, such as sea turtles and an afalina, and then explore the island at your own pace before heading back.

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