Touristic Buses can be very easy to use and usually affordable but when I look at people riding one, they look so sad and bored... Never noticed? Do it the next time you see one.
I understand that most tourists that use it only have 2 or 3 days to see as much as possible the city, this way is quick and you don't get tired, just sit your butt, look around, take pictures and listen the guide person (if there's one or if it's not a tape). But do you actually feel the vibe of the city?
I only used one touristic bus in Toronto and I think it was the first and last time. Even if I only have 6 hours in a city! I rather use my feet and explore as much as I can. In the way I'll go to a local restaurant and order traditional food with a refreshing local drink.
The good thing about it? You can get a free map and follow the route walking or cycling ;)
These are the reasons why I don't like this kind of "traveling":
1. If you see something interesting there's no way you can ask the bus driver to stop. You miss many areas that you wish you could explore deeper.
2. You don't have any contact with locals. You don't listen their language and don't share smiles with them in the street. You will spend the day/half day with other tourists taking pictures.
3. The bus will drop you off to only touristic spots. There's absolutely nothing wrong about it but you are certainly missing outstanding places that you can only discover by yourself.
4. Oh you are hungry and that specific restaurant looks delicious? Forget it! Or... write down the name, maybe you can go back tomorrow, hopefully they aren't close on Sundays!
5. You think is a great deal paying only 40 bucks for a touristic bus? With this money you can get a daily bus pass, eat and buy some souvenirs. Yep, it's more work for you but it's worth it! Go discover yourself and save some bucks yeeeyyy!!
Do you like to use this so called Hop on Hop off sightseeing tourist buses? Which cities did you use it before?