"Aren't polar bears from Poland?" (polar cruises)
List Words : Various contributors | 19 September

13 astonishing travel blunders

Last week it was travel complaints, this week we asked YOU to tell us the stupid things you've heard on your travels. Here are the funniest 13

It's not just the Americans who have taken a bit of a bashing in this hilarious, but shocking collaboration of the most stupid, moronic and ridiculous things you've heard around the world.

Thanks go to the myWanderlust community who rustled up our 13 favourites.

1. LaurenAmelia: “I'll get the ball rolling with something ridiculous my friend said a few years ago (she'll kill me if she finds out I posted it online).

“After seeing a poster in a window for cheap flights to Krakow, my friend said, "Oh, I'd love to go Poland, that's where polar bears are.""

2. toadfinder: “Two American tourists in Durham asked me if they could walk to Westminster Abbey. I told them that, although this was technically possible, they were in for a long haul. "But we can see it over there!" they said, pointing at the cathedral... ”

3. Sergeant_Pluck: “Standing outside a church in Amsterdam are two American tourists. They're reading the plaque on the wall that says the church was built in 17-something.

“Gee,” says the woman, “do you think it's Roman?””

4. travmaz: “My favourite is one I heard on the news when flights had been grounded at Heathrow in last year's deep freeze. When told all flights were cancelled an American asked if that applied to business class as well...”

5. djillanne: “One American girl asked if we'd heard of a town called Bangladesh because she had no idea where it was but she was flying there the following day.”

6. Liz Cleere: “Only in America... The conversation went like this:

"So Liz, where you from?"

"I'm from London."

Slight hesitation, screwed up face, "Is that near Paris?"

"I s'pose, in a way, it is."

7. VikkiRed: “I heard an American woman at Windsor Castle saying that it was a shame they built it so close to Heathrow – to be fair her husband did point out it was a daft thing to say.

"Again an American (poor Americans, they've taken a beating here), while I was working at Hampton Court Palace one asked for a guide book in American rather than English, as his wife didn't know what a kiosk was.”

8. Another classic from Sergeant_Pluck: “Talking to a Canadian soldier in Afghanistan. I told him I was leaving at the weekend, to travel back to Europe to watch a football match in Milan.

“Wow,” he says, “I'd love to go to Spain.””

9. beverley kay: “At Lake Baikal (the world's biggest fresh water lake) one of our English tour party said, “I think I'll walk round the lake before breakfast" on our tour of Siberia in 1990.

10. calamine2808: “ An American girl in India told me that she wasn't taking malaria tablets because if she caught it she would just 'get the cure' when she got home. I told her that there isn't a cure and that millions and millions of people have died of malaria, she said, "Yeah, but not Americans".”

11. Angela R: “Yet another knock at the Americans – I have to say now I have actually been there I only found them to be friendly and welcoming, and not at all stupid.

However, we were in a cable car waiting to ascend a mountain (name escapes me) in Jasper. An American girl says to her friend, "I wonder which way we will go"!”

12. andy morris: “I was once buddied up for a dive with someone I didn't know well. As I would be leading, I explained very carefully (and slowly) the layout of the ship we were about to dive on. We had an excellent dive on this well-known wreck off the Plymouth coast, which is, unlike some wrecks, clearly identifiable as a ship. On returning to the surface, I asked her whether she had enjoyed her dive.

"Oh yes!" she said. "Is it a house?””

13. JessL: “I was commuting to work one morning, walking alongside the River Thames. A couple with day packs and cameras appeared from a tube station and with great excitement shouted, “Oh look, the Seine!”

Possibly a case of too many cities in too few days...”

Do you have a more ridiculous story from your travels? Tell us below or post your story onto the original forum post here.

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