When I go on holiday, I tend to go walking alot in the countryside, coast or beach and one thing that we always do before we attempt any of these tracks is head to Tourist Information. It is always important to talk to local guides and people with knowledge of the area so they can talk to you about anything important you may need to know. However I would say as a strong piece of advice always do your own research too.
Believe it or not, sometimes these Tourist Information members have lead us to danger and it has made us even more wary when we go on holiday we always treble check anything. I wanted to highlight this as it is an important topic and wanted to give you a few examples of what has happened to us. I would like to point out though this is probably rare cases and it is not the norm for the bad advice and I would always recommend going to local Tourist Information for advice and we still do just do your own research a well.
Scotland – We have been to Scotland quite a few times as there are some fantastic places to walk. We went to tourist information to discuss the route and to find out if it was safe for people who are walkers and not hikers or climbers. They told us that it was very safe and that it is fine for people like us to walk.
The information we were given was inaccurate and wrong. These small rocks that they told us about ended up being hige boulders that we had to physically climb up and over, the whole walk was marsh land that was borderline unsafe and you had to pay attention where you would step or you would get stuck. The most dangerous part of the walk was that at at the end we were told to walk over stepping stones over a really fast flowing river that had a violent current.
We were so to speak, stuck, after 6 hours of walking and if it hadn’t been for very luckily finding a local working outside he allowed us through private property to get past safely.
Madeira – In Madeira they have many walks on the island called Levadas, I was with someone who suffered vertigo and so we went to Tourist Information to discover if any of these were ok for heights. They kept trying to ‘sell’ the idea of the walk and not really helping with our questions so we also did our own investigations online. We discovered that all of the walks they recommended for us actually had parts where you were pretty much on the edge of a massive drop and that would of been a problem. I am glad we researched before doing any of the ones they tried to push us to do.
Tampa – There is Tourist Information that have given us wrong information but there is something that is just as bad is when people at the office are so unfriendly and they don’t want to help tourists. Tampa’s tourist information were s rude because they didn’t want to help tourists and wanted to focus on their conversations which is just as bad as they should be there to help.