Avoid these sprawling metropolises if you’re not a people person.

1. Seoul, South Korea

What: Crawling with 25 million folk, South Korea’s energetic capital is a whirl of skyscrapers and dazzling neon. Dig a little deeper, though, and you’ll find underground karaoke rooms, off-beat cafes, and top eateries serving up octopus and barbecued beer, as well as peaceful Buddhist templesand colourful markets.
Get more info: visitsouthkorea.co.uk

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2. Mumbai, India

What: Fifteen million people call Mumbai home, making it India’s largest city. Expect top fare, from vada pav (potato patties in a bun) courtesy of street vendors, to thalis at Thackers restaurant. It’s also home to Bollywood, which churns out 1000 films a year.
Get more info: incredibleindia.org

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3. Shanghai, China

What: China’s largest city is crammed with 8.2 million inhabitants, making for a vibrant street life scene. Expect to see food vendors selling from carts and groups performing t’ai chi at dawn. 
Get more info: cnto.org.uk

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4. Sao Paolo, Brazil

What: This bustling metropolis, with 9.8 million inhabitants, is a cultural melting pot with Japanese, Italian and Jewish neighbourhoods. It has a feisty arts scene and plays host to the Sao Paulo Biennial, the world’s second largest art festival.
Get more info: braziltour.com

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5. Mexico City, Mexico

What: Look beyond people-choked Mexico City’s bad reputation for crime and pollution and discover archaeological wonders and architectural gems. Explore Roma where you’ll find art galleries, street vendors and
a buzzing cafe scene. 
Get more info: visitmexico.com

– Janine Kelso