Blog thumbnail

Hanoi’s ‘train street’ becomes selfie central

Hanoi’s ‘train street’ becomes selfie central

Blog thumbnail in
(CNN) — Gone are the days when polite travelers would avoid walking in front of people so as not to get in their vacation snap — now, it’s all about not walking behind people to ruin their selfies.
Few places have selfie culture more on display than Hanoi, Vietnam, where the mix of old and new provides a fascinating photo backdrop for visitors. Hanoi’s “selfie street” is in the Old Quarter, along a set of train tracks originally built by French colonists.
And while selfie-takers can sometimes annoy locals as they block off sidewalks to get the perfect photo, there’s a bigger issue at play here in Hanoi — the train tracks are very much still operational, meaning that locals and visitors alike can risk their lives by not being careful when they stand on or walk across the tracks.
Many locals, who know the train schedules by heart and plan their day around them, have taken to giving visiting photographers a heads-up.
hanoi train tracks

A group of tourists pose with traditional Vietnamese hats on the train tracks.
NHAC NGUYEN / Getty
“It was fairly quiet when we went, as it was early in the day,” Instagrammer Christabel tells CNN Travel about her visit to “train street,” where she posted several photos on October 29. “The locals were super-friendly and they did mention the train times when we walked past.”
Christabel is just one of thousands who have shared pictures from “train street.”
Some people have gotten so obsessive about having the perfect social media-centric destination that they have hired professional photographers to follow them or visited an out-of-the-way location just in pursuit of an Instagram photo, giving birth to the phrase “do it for the ‘gram.”
A quick social media search shows photos of visitors sitting, running, jumping, dancing, kissing, pretending to fall and even planking along the tracks. Only a handful show an actual train going by.
Dave Fox, a Vietnam-based writer and writing coach, has watched locals-only places like “train street” become overcrowded in the era of social media. He first visited the street in 2010 and is sad to see it being “trampled” by tourists.
He has most recently been hearing stories of tourists who make a game of standing on the train tracks as long as possible, then jumping off just as the train comes — all while running a camera or GoPro.
“Overtourism is a new buzzword for something that has been going on a long time,” Fox tells CNN Travel.
Selfies are one thing, but he’s also concerned about what he calls “smash and grab” photography — snapping a photo of a local, then dashing off to the next attraction.
“Travelers need to be mindful of optics,” he says. “It’s fine to take people’s photos if you ask first and most people in Vietnam are nice. You need to treat people like human beings, not objects in a museum.”
Fox operates by a guiding principle: how would you feel if it happened to you? He asks travelers to put themselves in the mindset of the locals, and think about how they’d react if a stranger ran up and took their photo without permission.
While it seems that the local Vietnamese residents who live alongside “train street” are understanding of the people who come from around the world just to get their picture taken, not every destination has the same attitude.
Travel hotspots around the world, from Venice to New Orleans, are struggling to deal with overtourism. While selfie mania isn’t the only contributing factor, it definitely plays a role as places try to balance the number of people visiting an attraction with the amount of free publicity some gorgeous ‘grams can give them.
The Instagram “save” button was added in 2018 as a way to help users keep track of places they wanted to check out for their own travels and photo ops.
“Suddenly, some waterfall that’s kind of hidden away and not many people went to — all of a sudden it becomes really popular, because there’s been some celebrity post something on it or it’s in a popular TV show […] You can see that with some of the sites that have been featured in ‘Game of Thrones’ have become popularized,” says María Reynisdóttir, of Iceland’s Department of Tourism.
She adds: “And then all of sudden, lots of people start visiting but the site isn’t ready for the footfall. So then you need to be quick to react, but that isn’t always possible.”
(source: Lilit Marcus, CNN)

g i pure weight loss, happy weight loss, weight loss pills covered by blue cross blue shield, healthy diet plans to lose weight, ways to lose appetite, how to calculate your target heart rate for weight loss, why cant i lose weight during fasting il, saxenda price with insurance, sell weight loss products from home, american intelligence media, how much weight can a 210 woman lose on 1100 calories, what weight loss formula do most body builders use, youtube weight loss journey success, ground chicken keto recipes, cinnamon capsules appetite suppressant, how to carb cycle for weight loss, water pill lose weight, simple weight loss excercises, why is wine bad for weight loss, reddit trans women how to lose weight fast, best weight lost program, how much do i have to walk to actually lose weight, weight loss hipnosis seminars in ma, lipozene extra strength, walking and running for weight loss, ingredients in meizitang diet pills, dr oz weight loss pill cla, red drink for weight loss, lose weight 3 weeks fast, best store bought juices for weight loss, keto recipes using pork, i am overweight how much weight can i lose in a yeat, can you lose weight by doing 30 minutes of cardio, are diet pills sade, natural anorectic, trace curry weight loss, how to calculate resting metabolic rate weight loss, my 600 pound life where they dont lose weight, funny dieting tips, can strength training cause weight loss, weight loss clinins in mobile, weight loss program for disabled, always hungry weight loss, organic fat burner supplements, pill to lose weight fast, omega 3 supplements for weight loss, natural image appetite suppressant, why did toby lose weight,

Leave a reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Shopping cart

0

No products in the cart.

Hit Enter to search or Esc key to close