"How to behave to give tourists a bad name" Top 5 Page for this destination Aachen Warnings Or Dangers Tip by CatherineReichardt

Aachen Warnings and Dangers: 11 reviews and 10 photos

Our tour guide at the Aachen Dom told a shocking tale about how the actions of irresponsible tourists give their fellow travellers a bad name, which I think is worth sharing, as it highlights how insensitive some tourists can be, and how the perpetrators are not always young people.

A couple of years ago, he took a tour with a fairly elderly group, whose maturity seems sadly to only have extended to their age. By the time he had shepherded the last of the group up the stairs to the first floor where Charlemagne's throne is located, a man called Charles - who was celebrating his 72nd birthday that day – had already been 'installed' on the 1200 year throne (to which access is expressly forbidden) and had been ‘crowned’ by his friends with a paper crown from Burger King which had been brought along expressly for this purpose.

To give due credit to the guide (who is still clearly incensed by the incident), he summarily ejected the Birthday Boy from the throne, halted the tour immediately and evicted the entire group from the Dom, but of course by that time, the damage was done.

I am horrified by the insensitivity this tale displays, and I cannot counternance how anyone could possibly consider it acceptable to desecrate a uniquely important international monument in that manner. Sadly having the financial means to travel doesn’t always guarantee that you have the emotional maturity and sensitivity to respect this privilege.

And we tourists wonder why we are not always welcomed with open arms ...

Review Helpfulness: 4.5 out of 5 stars

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  • Updated Aug 8, 2012
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