While the majority of the world’s attractions have reopened and are running normally once more, others have been affected by the epidemic. While some of the world’s best places have decided to say farewell permanently, others have rebuilt or improved infrastructure during the tourism downturn. Here are some places you should avoid travelling and should cross off from your bucket list for 2023 before you make your next vacation plans.
One of Hanoi’s most well-known and exciting tourist destinations is Hanoi Train Street which is trending on social media. It’s a small, winding lane tucked away in one of Hanoi’s back alleyways, surrounded by tightly clustered, tall, winding homes and shops. The train travels by the backyards of these houses and shops a couple of times each day. Tourists enjoyed the excitement of posing on the industrial rails while sipping in the cafes nearby.
Despite the rails’ vibrant appearance, the Hanoi city administration and its local transportation authority had ordered the closure of the cafes strewn around the railway tracks. Tourists who want to sit, lie down, and take pictures on the rails have led to forming a huge crowd on Train Street and a real safety concern. Additionally, barriers have already been erected to prevent visitors from entering the street. The notification of the cafe’s closure came on October 6, one day after a train was forced to stop abruptly and be redirected due to an excessive number of visitors blocking the rails.
Noah Davis, a painter who passed away in 2012, and his wife Karon Davis, a sculptor, established the nonprofit gallery and cultural centre The Underground Museum in Los Angeles. The museum, which was also a bookshop, organising space, and community centre, persevered after Noah Davis’ passing in 2015 and continued to operate out of a few small storefronts in the well-known Bernal Heights neighbourhood.
On the contrary, the Underground Museum struggled because of the pandemic. The museum closed its doors in 2022 despite having prominent celebrity backers and patrons, including Beyonce, Tracee Ellis Ross, and John Legend. Meg Onli and Cristina Pacheco, the museum’s co-directors, both resigned from their positions. It’s unclear what transpired or whether the museum will reopen in a different location or format.
In a message uploaded on Instagram, Karon Davis, one of the museum’s cofounders, said, “For now, we ask that everyone give us the space and privacy needed to grasp the future of the museum and to heal individually and collectively.” We simply do not have any answers right now. So, we will also be closing the museum until further notice. During this period, we encourage you to engage with the incredible art spaces all over our beloved Los Angeles.”
The largest park in Asia, covering 20.2 hectares in a western region of Singapore, is home to approximately 5,000 birds representing 400 different species. During the daily feeding sessions, you will come across the numerous feathered residents and may perhaps catch a glimpse of elusive species like the crested guinea fowl, colourful starling, and turaco. But the best tourist destination in Singapore, Jurong Bird Park, has shut its doors after 52 long years.
The Mandai Wildlife Reserve, which is intended to be an ethical wildlife and nature attraction with the purpose of safeguarding animal species in the northern regions of the city-state, is where the birds will soon make their new home, so animal lovers need not worry. Jurong Bird Park will be renamed Bird Paradise and have brand-new walk-in aviaries when it moves to the reserve. Five zoological parks and an eco-friendly resort will make up the Mandai Wildlife Reserve. It is scheduled to open in 2023. Through 2024 and 2025, more sections of the project will be opened to the public.
In March 2020, the Dublin Writers Museum, located at No. 18 Parnell Square in Dublin, Ireland, was shut down permanently for what was intended to be a brief period. The Museum was set up to foster interest in both the lives and works of particular Irish writers as well as Irish literature as a whole through its collection, exhibitions, and programmes. The museum is housed in an 18th-century mansion that houses the museum rooms, library, gallery, and administration area.
A prospective reopening of the museum was also hampered by staffing issues; since 2020, two staff members have resigned and another two have been transferred to different sectors within Fáilte Ireland.
The museum will be permanently closed, according to a statement made in August 2022 by Failte Ireland, the Irish national tourism organisation that owned and operated it. The statement stated that the museum “no longer meets the expectations of the contemporary museum visitor in terms of accessibility, presentation, and interpretation.”
The Jumbo Kingdom is among the biggest and most well-known floating restaurants in Hong Kong, if not the entire globe. It has a length of about 80 metres and can accommodate over 2,000 people on three stories just off the coast of Aberdeen, between the islands of Hong Kong and Ap Lei Chau. Its interior is filled with pagodas and stunning statues of brilliantly coloured dragons, and it was built in the royal style of a Chinese palace. The massive palace has drawn millions of visitors over the years.
However, the iconic floating restaurant in Hong Kong published a brief message on its social media profiles. “Due to the impact of the current situation, Jumbo Kingdom will suspend its services from March 3rd until further notice.” Since then, it has never been reopened.
When the restaurant was fully occupied, it could accommodate around 2,300 diners. Notable customers have included Queen Elizabeth II, Jimmy Carter, Tom Cruise, Pele, and Chow Yun-fat. In the pandemic-themed film Contagion, Gwyneth Paltrow dines at the restaurant, which was also featured in the film’s casino sequences.
The three-story, beautiful ship was so expensive to maintain. After many failed efforts to sell Jumbo to a local Hong Kong buyer, the ship was on its way to a Southeast Asian shipyard when it drowned near the Paracel Islands due to “adverse circumstances” in the South China Sea. After 46 years, the ship sank as it was being hauled from its residence by tugboats.
The 9/11 Tribute Museum, which opened at Ground Zero, told the personal accounts of individuals who lost loved ones, survivors, rescuers, volunteers, and inhabitants of Lower Manhattan to people interested in learning more about the September 11 attacks. Before becoming an entirely online museum in August 2022, it was situated in Manhattan’s Financial District and provided walking tours and exhibits with artefacts and information on the 9/11 attacks.
In the summer of 2022, the 16-year-old 9/11 Tribute Museum, which recounted the tragic tale of the catastrophe, was shut down. The museum waved farewell and halted its Tribute Walking Tours of the community, which were guided by 9/11 survivors, because of financial losses from the epidemic.
The museum’s co-founder, Jennifer Adams-Webb, stated that “the visitors just aren’t back,” adding that without government funding, the museum would not have been able to continue operating. Despite having spoken with the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs and other departments for months, she claimed, it had been unable to secure that.
Tokyo’s TeamLab Borderless, the first digital art museum in the world, is situated on Odaiba, a man-made island in Tokyo Bay. It is a digital and interactive museum that offers a “body immersion” experience in which the lines between the notions of art and body disappear. Touch, sight, hearing, smell, and imagination are all stimulated by this multi-sensory experience. It enables visitors to practically submerge themselves in a living and evolving world of art.
The Edo-Tokyo Museum is a traditional historical museum that emphasises Japanese culture. You can read everything about Edo’s intriguing past here. The museum uses one-of-a-kind, often life-size exhibits to depict how people used to live. A full-scale replica of the Nihonbashi Bridge, which allowed people to enter the Edo period, was one of the most striking attractions. The Edo-Tokyo Museum has declared that it will be closed for renovations for at least three years. The museum will reopen, according to officials, in late 2025 or early 2026.
The digital art museum teamLab Borderless in Odaiba, which opened in the summer of 2018, announced its closure just three years after it began operations. But don’t worry, it will be moving to a new location in the much-awaited Toranomon-Azabudai Project, which is scheduled to be finished in 2023, from its current home in Odaiba. No precise date for the reopening has been announced.
The 1912-founded Museum of London will relocate from its current location on London Wall to the neighbouring General Market, a formerly vacant space that will be refurbished and preserved. It was claimed that the existing location was challenging for tourists to identify and that by growing from 17,000 to 27,000 square metres, a larger amount of the museum’s collection could be put on exhibit. Along with the new location, the attraction will change its name to The London Museum, extend its hours on Fridays and Saturdays, and nudge visitors toward surrounding small businesses. The museum is scheduled to reopen in 2026, and the new Elizabeth Line’s Farringdon station will make it easy to get there.
The Queen Mary made her last journey from Southampton in 1967, anchoring in Long Beach, California, where she is still docked today. Since then, the almost century-old ocean liner has undergone extensive renovations to become a historic hotel and one of Long Beach’s most popular tourist destinations. Visitors are welcome to explore the ship’s storied corridors and learn about her past through tours and onboard exhibitions. But the ship now needs immediate repairs.
The Queen Mary needs at least $5 million in repairs, according to the city of Long Beach, which owns the ship. This is because the Queen Mary has sustained more damage than simple wear and tear. The lifeboats will be removed in the hopes that a museum, historical organisation, or other attraction will choose to show them because their weight has specifically caused long-term damage.
On December 12, Long Beach stated that a few tours of a few select areas of the ship would restart. The excursions, which are, best of all, free, will allow passengers to learn more about the ship’s almost 100-year history. However, the majority of the onboard facilities, including the hotel and dining options, are still temporarily unavailable.
Due to the irregular availability of water on islands, Maui Island has to impose mandatory water limits on its citizens’ non-essential water consumption. The resorts in South and Central Maui, which had several pools, well-kept lawns, and golf courses, were exempt from these limitations.
Conflicts and discontent have resulted from the unequal allocation of water between locals and tourist attractions, particularly in light of the rising cost of living caused by an increase in short-term rentals. Many residents have urged visitors to refrain from travelling since it also leads to an increase in the number of homeless people.
These are some places you should avoid travelling to in 2023. But you can still travel to the countries mentioned