Culture Shock: Strange Travel Signs

One of the best things about traveling the world is the funny travel signs you see on your adventures. Whether due to cultural miscomprehension or language barriers, the odd wording and puzzling diagrams you encounter on the road are definitely something to write home about.  Here, has put together nine quirky travel signs photographed around the world. Enjoy! Originally published on TripAtlas
  • 1. Airport Security Fun

    Photographed in an airport in South Africa, this sign means to warn travelers that inappropriate remarks regarding hijacking, bombs, weapons, or explosives are enough to get you detained. But its graphics say something different. Namely, if you get arrested by a naked, censored policeman/woman, you will smile while you cry and/or get stabbed in the eyes with pins and/or tear-gassed while being handcuffed. Photo courtesy of mootpointer | Andrew Harvey (cc)

  • 2. Rules for Entering Temple

    When you’re experiencing a different culture, it’s important to be open and accepting of customs. It’s not so much the customs that “is making” this sign awesome—it’s the “Engrish.” Photo taken in Bali, Indonesia. Photo courtesy of Jungle_Boy (cc)

  • 3. No Cows During Peak Hours

    This photo was taken in Mumbai, India; the sign says that during peak hours, transport vehicles, including rickshaws, oxen carts, and cows, cannot use the road. Photo courtesy of Jungle_Boy (cc)

  • 4. Please Pay Cashier

    That’s right, before pimping your gas, please pay at cashier. This was taken at a gas station right outside of Las Vegas. Photo courtesy of Random Factor (cc)

  • 5. Beware Giant Octopus

    There’s no way I would go near the water if I saw this sign—the giant octopus is ridiculous. Photo taken at Cape Tribulation, in Australia, to warn beach visitors of Irukandji, or jellyfish, one sting from which can be fatal. Photo courtesy of ultrahi (cc)

  • 6. Hell

    If you’re in Michigan and someone tells you go to Hell, don’t take it personally—they might just be referring to the town of Hell, located in Livingston County. Photo courtesy of Danielle Walquist (cc)

  • 7. Crossing Sign

    This crossing sign in Hiroshima, Japan, looks normal at first, until you really look and realize what it actually communicates: “Beware of George Washington crossing street with devil child.” Photo courtesy of LeeLeFever (cc)

  • 8. Do It at the Beach

    Please do what at the beach, exactly? Blow bubbles? Get jiggy with it? This is a “politeness” sign that is often seen in the subway system in Tokyo, Japan. This one is meant to say “No horseplay at edge of subway platform.” Clearly. Photo courtesy of Simnatic (cc)

  • 9. No Shiting

    This was found over a toilet in a Beijing bar. The rest of the sign also reads “No restricted knives and explosives.” Oh Engrish, you win again. Photo courtesy of TrevinC (cc)


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