TikTok Reveals Why Solo Travelers Might Want To Skip This European Country

Sometimes, our bucket list is heavily influenced by what we see in movies and TV. Raise your hand if Italy, India, and Indonesia climbed to top of your list after viewing "Eat Pray Love." When it comes to France, you probably don't need much persuading to visit one of the most romantic countries in Europe. How many novels, operas, and films have been set in gay Paree? Looking at television, Netflix's "Emily In Paris" has notoriously romanticized the French capital with its depictions of friendly locals, fashionable hotties, and romantic liaisons at every turn. However, one TikToker found out the hard way that France definitely isn't all baguettes and funny mimes.

Hailing from San Francisco, but born in Beijing, TikToker Angela posted on her @RealPhDFoodie account that "France made me cry." In the viral video, we see her wandering Lyon in a red beret with tears in her eyes. "To be honest, the experience is very isolating," she states. "Don't get me wrong, it's a beautiful city — it has a lot to do and see and to discover. But I don't recommend it for a solo traveler or someone who doesn't speak French because it's a very isolating experience." She continues she even bought the beret to fit in and make friends, but didn't befriend anyone in six days. Her video racked up almost 8 million views. So has she hit the nail on the head? Let's investigate.

The French can be cold to outsiders

Angela's viral TikTok garnered more than 535,000 likes and over 43,000 comments, sparking a very lively conversation about the French and their attitude toward non-French-speaking tourists. "People make you feel bad for not knowing their culture or speaking their language," Angela says in the clip, and the comments section had lots of support. "Girl I live in Lyon, I'm not French and yes, all of my friends are foreigners because French people only have French friends even if you speak French," read one comment, while another added, "Paris was such a let down, especially since me and my mom wear the hijab, we got glares and NOBODY except one baker guy greeted us and smiled." However, some on social media mocked Angela for misconstruing real life with "Emily In Paris."

On X (formerly Twitter), Angela was chastised for thinking France would be just like the Netflix show. In real life, Parisians take great offence to the show, with one telling NBC News, "It was worse than cliché, it felt like it was Americans mocking French people." X users also questioned why Anglea didn't learn a single phrase in French but thought the beret would make up for it. "'I even bought a French hat' yet couldn't try to learn some few basic French phrases? GURL..." one user posted. "The 'French Hat' is where her problems began," another posted. Was sporting the stereotypical beret her first mistake?

Don't wear a beret!

While many online agree with Angela that the French are not famous for their kindness or warmth toward foreign tourists, some reports suggest that Angela's first mistake was sporting a stereotypical French beret, which many in France actually hate. "Queer Eye" star and fashion mogul Tan France told Business Insider that berets are a faux-pas. "They're not really wearing those, and you might embarrass yourself," France told the outlet. An ocean of ink has been spilt trying to dissuade tourists from wearing the beret while visiting France, like this Huffington Post op-ed, which decries the beret as a tourist trap. Comme Une Francaise, which offers online French language and culture classes, also wrote about the boring stereotype that is the beret.

An entire Reddit thread on Angela's fashion choice sparked more debate, with users saying the French were probably turned off by her hat. However, there are also tons of supportive comments, with many saying that France just isn't very friendly to outsiders. So if you're heading solo to the City of Lights, the French Riviera, or anywhere in the land of wine and baguettes, be prepared! You might not make a ton of besties like "Emily In Paris." And leave the beret in your closet.