There are three places/things I've seen that were better than advertised, took my breath away and in one case brought me to tears.

Eppy99

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I'm sure I might be able to think of more but at the top of my head in chronological order from when I saw them.

1) The Great Wall - I visited China in 1994 with my parents and it was better than advertised. I mean this thing is massive and when you consider how long it took and the amount of workers.

2) The Statue of David in Florence by Michael Angelo - I by no means am a great lover of art. I appreciate some art but sometimes I see art and just think, meh. My wife and I visited Florence on our honeymoon in 2003 and we had to see some art since that's what you do in Florence. To this day the Statue of David is the greatest piece of artwork I've ever seen. You can't fully appreciate it without being in person. I'm not sure I can even describe why it's so perfect but it just is. This literally took my breath away and was way better than advertised and better than my expectations.

3) The Grand Canyon - I visited the south rim of the canyon with my wife and kids in 2018. I expected it to be awesome and beautiful, but upon first site it was far and away the greatest thing I've ever seen. It literally brought me to tears. As a person it made me realize how small I am in comparison to the world and how long this physical place has been here before and will be after me. I can't wait to go back. It's funny I think the movie Vacation actually made me think it wouldn't be such a big deal.

Anyone care to share? Doesn't have to be 3.
 

Univee2

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I'm sure I might be able to think of more but at the top of my head in chronological order from when I saw them.

1) The Great Wall - I visited China in 1994 with my parents and it was better than advertised. I mean this thing is massive and when you consider how long it took and the amount of workers.

2) The Statue of David in Florence by Michael Angelo - I by no means am a great lover of art. I appreciate some art but sometimes I see art and just think, meh. My wife and I visited Florence on our honeymoon in 2003 and we had to see some art since that's what you do in Florence. To this day the Statue of David is the greatest piece of artwork I've ever seen. You can't fully appreciate it without being in person. I'm not sure I can even describe why it's so perfect but it just is. This literally took my breath away and was way better than advertised and better than my expectations.

3) The Grand Canyon - I visited the south rim of the canyon with my wife and kids in 2018. I expected it to be awesome and beautiful, but upon first site it was far and away the greatest thing I've ever seen. It literally brought me to tears. As a person it made me realize how small I am in comparison to the world and how long this physical place has been here before and will be after me. I can't wait to go back. It's funny I think the movie Vacation actually made me think it wouldn't be such a big deal.

Anyone care to share? Doesn't have to be 3.

Memorial Stadium.

If you had ever been to an IU football game in the 10th Street "Stadium," you'd understand . . .
 

Univee2

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I'm sure I might be able to think of more but at the top of my head in chronological order from when I saw them.

1) The Great Wall - I visited China in 1994 with my parents and it was better than advertised. I mean this thing is massive and when you consider how long it took and the amount of workers.

2) The Statue of David in Florence by Michael Angelo - I by no means am a great lover of art. I appreciate some art but sometimes I see art and just think, meh. My wife and I visited Florence on our honeymoon in 2003 and we had to see some art since that's what you do in Florence. To this day the Statue of David is the greatest piece of artwork I've ever seen. You can't fully appreciate it without being in person. I'm not sure I can even describe why it's so perfect but it just is. This literally took my breath away and was way better than advertised and better than my expectations.

3) The Grand Canyon - I visited the south rim of the canyon with my wife and kids in 2018. I expected it to be awesome and beautiful, but upon first site it was far and away the greatest thing I've ever seen. It literally brought me to tears. As a person it made me realize how small I am in comparison to the world and how long this physical place has been here before and will be after me. I can't wait to go back. It's funny I think the movie Vacation actually made me think it wouldn't be such a big deal.

Anyone care to share? Doesn't have to be 3.

Seriously, though, Ireland did/does it for me. As one of Irish descent, the whole country speaks to me in a way no other place/thing can. There's something mystical/ethereal about so much of it. You can feel the spirits of those who came before. In many of the small villages/towns and their pubs you can sense your great-great grandfathers' presence. The Irish whiskey and Guinness helps . . .

God invented whiskey so the Irish wouldn't rule the world . . .
 

jsig

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Apr 8, 2004
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I'm sure I might be able to think of more but at the top of my head in chronological order from when I saw them.

1) The Great Wall - I visited China in 1994 with my parents and it was better than advertised. I mean this thing is massive and when you consider how long it took and the amount of workers.

2) The Statue of David in Florence by Michael Angelo - I by no means am a great lover of art. I appreciate some art but sometimes I see art and just think, meh. My wife and I visited Florence on our honeymoon in 2003 and we had to see some art since that's what you do in Florence. To this day the Statue of David is the greatest piece of artwork I've ever seen. You can't fully appreciate it without being in person. I'm not sure I can even describe why it's so perfect but it just is. This literally took my breath away and was way better than advertised and better than my expectations.

3) The Grand Canyon - I visited the south rim of the canyon with my wife and kids in 2018. I expected it to be awesome and beautiful, but upon first site it was far and away the greatest thing I've ever seen. It literally brought me to tears. As a person it made me realize how small I am in comparison to the world and how long this physical place has been here before and will be after me. I can't wait to go back. It's funny I think the movie Vacation actually made me think it wouldn't be such a big deal.

Anyone care to share? Doesn't have to be 3.
Been to 1 and 3 and yes they are great. I'll add 2 places. Not saying better or worse but certainlyshould be on a bucket list.

I've been to the Taj Mahal twice and it is also awesome. Just wear sunglasses when you go. The sun reflecting off of the white marble is tough on the eyes.

The 2nd place is Machu Picchu. Hopefully, I can retire to Arequipa and make more frequent trips there in a few years.
 

Eppy99

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Seriously, though, Ireland did/does it for me. As one of Irish descent, the whole country speaks to me in a way no other place/thing can. There's something mystical/ethereal about so much of it. You can feel the spirits of those who came before. In many of the small villages/towns and their pubs you can sense your great-great grandfathers' presence. The Irish whiskey and Guinness helps . . .

God invented whiskey so the Irish wouldn't rule the world . . .
I almost said my visit to the Western Wall in Jerusalem, but until I can experience it with my girls It doesn't do it for me. PLEASE DON'T HIJACK THIS THREAD WITH A RANT ON THIS TOPIC
 

Eppy99

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Been to 1 and 3 and yes they are great. I'll add 2 places. Not saying better or worse but certainlyshould be on a bucket list.

I've been to the Taj Mahal twice and it is also awesome. Just wear sunglasses when you go. The sun reflecting off of the white marble is tough on the eyes.

The 2nd place is Machu Picchu. Hopefully, I can retire to Arequipa and make more frequent trips there in a few years.
Yes I've been to Machu Picchu as well. I really liked it too, but for whatever reason it didn't have the same affect on me as the others.
 
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IUclover

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Seriously, though, Ireland did/does it for me. As one of Irish descent, the whole country speaks to me in a way no other place/thing can. There's something mystical/ethereal about so much of it. You can feel the spirits of those who came before. In many of the small villages/towns and their pubs you can sense your great-great grandfathers' presence. The Irish whiskey and Guinness helps . . .

God invented whiskey so the Irish wouldn't rule the world . . .
My wife and I spent ten days in Ireland for our honeymoon. Definitely a special place.

Entering and driving around Zion National Park for the first time was amazing too.
 

mushroomgod_1

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I'm sure I might be able to think of more but at the top of my head in chronological order from when I saw them.

1) The Great Wall - I visited China in 1994 with my parents and it was better than advertised. I mean this thing is massive and when you consider how long it took and the amount of workers.

2) The Statue of David in Florence by Michael Angelo - I by no means am a great lover of art. I appreciate some art but sometimes I see art and just think, meh. My wife and I visited Florence on our honeymoon in 2003 and we had to see some art since that's what you do in Florence. To this day the Statue of David is the greatest piece of artwork I've ever seen. You can't fully appreciate it without being in person. I'm not sure I can even describe why it's so perfect but it just is. This literally took my breath away and was way better than advertised and better than my expectations.

3) The Grand Canyon - I visited the south rim of the canyon with my wife and kids in 2018. I expected it to be awesome and beautiful, but upon first site it was far and away the greatest thing I've ever seen. It literally brought me to tears. As a person it made me realize how small I am in comparison to the world and how long this physical place has been here before and will be after me. I can't wait to go back. It's funny I think the movie Vacation actually made me think it wouldn't be such a big deal.

Anyone care to share? Doesn't have to be 3.

Haven't been to THE Grand Canyon, but the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone River in YNP is pretty impressive.

As is Niagara Falls....too bad about the commercialization.
 

Eppy99

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Haven't been to THE Grand Canyon, but the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone River in YNP is pretty impressive.

As is Niagara Falls....too bad about the commercialization.
Yea I went to Yellowstone this summer on our great RV trip and saw the Grand Canyonn of the Yellowstone River. Another better than advertised visit on this trip was to Crazy Horse in SD. First of all I enjoyed it much more than Mt. Rushmore. While it's yet to be completed and probably won't during my lifetime at the rate of work the cultural experience is fantastic and was very educational for my kids, wife and I. I highly recommend it when passing through SD.
 
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Joe_Hoopsier

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Been to 1 and 3 and yes they are great. I'll add 2 places. Not saying better or worse but certainlyshould be on a bucket list.

I've been to the Taj Mahal twice and it is also awesome. Just wear sunglasses when you go. The sun reflecting off of the white marble is tough on the eyes.

The 2nd place is Machu Picchu. Hopefully, I can retire to Arequipa and make more frequent trips there in a few years.
I've been to the Taj Mahal but couldn't go in or even up close that day. It was the day that the last Prince in India dies (I think that is what he was). It was damn impressive from the street though.
 

mcmurtry66

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I'm sure I might be able to think of more but at the top of my head in chronological order from when I saw them.

1) The Great Wall - I visited China in 1994 with my parents and it was better than advertised. I mean this thing is massive and when you consider how long it took and the amount of workers.

2) The Statue of David in Florence by Michael Angelo - I by no means am a great lover of art. I appreciate some art but sometimes I see art and just think, meh. My wife and I visited Florence on our honeymoon in 2003 and we had to see some art since that's what you do in Florence. To this day the Statue of David is the greatest piece of artwork I've ever seen. You can't fully appreciate it without being in person. I'm not sure I can even describe why it's so perfect but it just is. This literally took my breath away and was way better than advertised and better than my expectations.

3) The Grand Canyon - I visited the south rim of the canyon with my wife and kids in 2018. I expected it to be awesome and beautiful, but upon first site it was far and away the greatest thing I've ever seen. It literally brought me to tears. As a person it made me realize how small I am in comparison to the world and how long this physical place has been here before and will be after me. I can't wait to go back. It's funny I think the movie Vacation actually made me think it wouldn't be such a big deal.

Anyone care to share? Doesn't have to be 3.
grand canyon is spectacular. i did a 7 day white water rafting trip and by day 4 was ready to roll over and die. hot as hell. the scenery never changed. it was brutal. one day would have been heavenly - 7 days was hell. speaking of heavenly that's a great ski resort. the one slope you're on a narrow run with the snow to the left and desert to the right. spectacular scenery.

the other i was on the field for a closed practice with real madrid. as a soccer nut kicking the ball around a bit with them was really something. the speed at which they played was far better than advertised.

kids are far better than advertised. to me better than anything.
 
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Eppy99

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grand canyon is spectacular. i did a 7 day white water rafting trip and by day 4 was ready to roll over and die. hot as hell. the scenery never changed. it was brutal. one day would have been heavenly - 7 days was hell. speaking of great sites i've visited was skiing heavenly. the one slope you're on a narrow run with the snow to the left and desert to the right. spectacular.
I'm sorry I don't ski downhill. Where is Heavenly?
 
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vesuvius13

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Bermuda was a magical place even though I was just 10 when we left after three years. The beaches are unbelievable, the old forts, just the entire atmosphere of pastel house with white roofs and mopeds dominate the roads.

Guam was covered with jungle in many areas with cliffs and beaches to explore. It still has blasted tanks from WWII, destroyers and planes in the harbors, and the history of the islands surrounding Guam with history of WWII still there. On Guam standing at the top of the cliff where so many Japanese families jumped to their deaths rather than surrender. Just trying to come to terms what would drive them to this drastic step.

The Everglades were a awesome experience I got to visit twice. Going back and eating in the BBQ shacks that had the best I have ever eaten. The size of the Glades is hard to fathom and to understand it is really a slow moving river. Coming upon an alligator in his natural habitat, there are on golf courses/ canals, and realizing how old these reptiles are and still thriving. Not only the Glades in Florida but the Keys have their own mystic and beauty. The ocean has a pull on me that is hard to explain but the movement of the tides, the color changes, etc just pull on me and I wish I had the wealth to retire on a tropical island.

Finally the hills of southern Indiana is a mystical place if you get deep into the forest. I know part of that has to do with my family coming to Indiana when it was first being explored and settled. Being surround by hills and trees making you feel you may be alone on Earth feeling the hills and trees come alive.

You can find magic and beauty where ever you live if you just open your mind and eyes. You have to get your mind out of the rat race and come alive to soak in the atmosphere of your surroundings and you will find the beauty in life.
 

SqueakyClean

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About the closest thing I can think of offhand was visiting the Sequoia (Redwood) forest in California a few years back. Seeing some of those trees that are 300 feet tall, 30 foot wide, and over 3000 years old really puts some things in your life in perspective.
 

Eppy99

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About the closest thing I can think of offhand was visiting the Sequoia (Redwood) forest in California a few years back. Seeing some of those trees that are 300 feet tall, 30 foot wide, and over 3000 years old really puts some things in your life in perspective.
Agreed. Went to Muir Woods once. That was awesome!
 

MyTeamIsOnTheFloor

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Duckburg
The Grand Canyon stunned me into silence. There are simply no words.

I am mesmerized by all big waterfalls.

My first sight of and drive toward the Rocky Mountains was religious.

On the right mornings, an early flight from Louisville to Charlotte provides a look up the Appalachians and Shenandoah Valley that is awesome.

But just sitting on the bluff in my hometown as a kid and watching the Ohio River flow by a million times changed me every time.
 

Eppy99

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The Grand Canyon stunned me into silence. There are simply no words.

I am mesmerized by all big waterfalls.

My first sight of and drive toward the Rocky Mountains was religious.

On the right mornings, an early flight from Louisville to Charlotte provides a look up the Appalachians and Shenandoah Valley that is awesome.

But just sitting on the bluff in my hometown as a kid and watching the Ohio River flow by a million times changed me every time.
I could spend a month just driving throughout Colorado. When we've visitied with the kids they don't seem to mind the drives as everyday is one breathtaking view after another. I love the changes in topography. I will say driving up to the top of Mt. Evans is one of the scariest white knuckle drives of alltime! I much prefer being the driver than the passenger though....doesn't take much for me to get car sick with the switchbacks.
 

mcmurtry66

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Haven't been to THE Grand Canyon, but the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone River in YNP is pretty impressive.

As is Niagara Falls....too bad about the commercialization.
i've never been to niagara falls and want to see it. is it worth a trip though? is there anything else to do around there?
 

Eppy99

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We should do a separate thread on most disappointing places/experiences.
 

walkerman

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I'm sure I might be able to think of more but at the top of my head in chronological order from when I saw them.

1) The Great Wall - I visited China in 1994 with my parents and it was better than advertised. I mean this thing is massive and when you consider how long it took and the amount of workers.

2) The Statue of David in Florence by Michael Angelo - I by no means am a great lover of art. I appreciate some art but sometimes I see art and just think, meh. My wife and I visited Florence on our honeymoon in 2003 and we had to see some art since that's what you do in Florence. To this day the Statue of David is the greatest piece of artwork I've ever seen. You can't fully appreciate it without being in person. I'm not sure I can even describe why it's so perfect but it just is. This literally took my breath away and was way better than advertised and better than my expectations.

3) The Grand Canyon - I visited the south rim of the canyon with my wife and kids in 2018. I expected it to be awesome and beautiful, but upon first site it was far and away the greatest thing I've ever seen. It literally brought me to tears. As a person it made me realize how small I am in comparison to the world and how long this physical place has been here before and will be after me. I can't wait to go back. It's funny I think the movie Vacation actually made me think it wouldn't be such a big deal.

Anyone care to share? Doesn't have to be 3.
Your description of the David is as close as anyone could come to the feelings I too experienced. Perfect!

Yosemite would be on my list of experiences with the Mariposa Sequoia trees walk through we did a truly humbling moment, viewing a product of nature that was alive at the time of the Roman Empire. And the rack rail trip from Grindelwald upward to the Eiger Mountain, with the view from inside the tunnel straight down the north face, and then the walk across the glacier with my Joanie. The memory is still clear 49 years later.

Life is good.
 

Eppy99

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The Shrimp Cocktail at St Elmo
Sheet, I bought some of the sauce from the grocery the other day. It was too damn hot. Honestly unedible. Mind you I’ve had the cocktail sauce many times in person. I’ve purchased the sauce before but this batch I couldn’t handle.
 

outside shooter

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Your description of David is how I feel about seeing Rodin's Burghers of Calais. The pain, anguish, and heroism of 6 men all expresed differently has always fascinated me. I haven't seen the original in Calais, but I have seen several of the 12 castings (Philly, New York Met, DC Hirshhorn, Paris, London, Copenhagen).

from wiki:
In 1346, England's Edward III, after a victory in the Battle of Crécy, laid siege to Calais, while Philip VI of France ordered the city to hold out at all costs. Philip failed to lift the siege, and starvation eventually forced the city to parley for surrender.

Edward offered to spare the people of the city if six of its leaders would surrender themselves to him, presumably to be executed. Edward demanded that they walk out wearing nooses around their necks, and carrying the keys to the city and castle. One of the wealthiest of the town leaders, Eustache de Saint Pierre, volunteered first, and five other burghers joined with him. Saint Pierre led this envoy of volunteers to the city gates.

It was this moment, and this poignant mix of defeat, heroic self-sacrifice, and willingness to face imminent death that Rodin captured in his sculpture, scaled somewhat larger than life.
 
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Eppy99

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Your description of David is how I feel about seeing Rodin's Burghers of Calais. The pain, anguish, and heroism of 6 men all expresed differently has always fascinated me. I haven't seen the original in Calais, but I have seen several of the 12 castings (Philly, New York Met, DC Hirshhorn, Paris, London, Copenhagen).

from wiki:
In 1346, England's Edward III, after a victory in the Battle of Crécy, laid siege to Calais, while Philip VI of France ordered the city to hold out at all costs. Philip failed to lift the siege, and starvation eventually forced the city to parley for surrender.

Edward offered to spare the people of the city if six of its leaders would surrender themselves to him, presumably to be executed. Edward demanded that they walk out wearing nooses around their necks, and carrying the keys to the city and castle. One of the wealthiest of the town leaders, Eustache de Saint Pierre, volunteered first, and five other burghers joined with him. Saint Pierre led this envoy of volunteers to the city gates.

It was this moment, and this poignant mix of defeat, heroic self-sacrifice, and willingness to face imminent death that Rodin captured in his sculpture, scaled somewhat larger than life.
Would you mind trying to link this for me? I’m not sure I’ve seen it.
 

outside shooter

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1280px-Statue_bourgeois_calais_rodin.jpg
 

outside shooter

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Some of the installations don't follow Rodin's wishes, that the figures not be on a pedestal but at ground level such that the audience is able to approach the figures and appreciate their sacrifice.
 

outside shooter

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Ultimately the Burghers' lives were spared! Though they expected to be executed and volunteered their lives to save the remnants of their city and their loved ones, England's Queen, Philippa of Hainault, persuaded her husband to exercise mercy. Her contention was that their deaths would be a bad omen for her unborn child. He bought it!

Here's a good collection of photos showing different angles and closeups: http://www.wfrjr.com/data/monument/Rodin/Calais.html
 

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