It seems appropriate to start with the mother of all tourist ghettos – Bangkok’s Khao San road. Nothing says Thai culture like getting your hair braided or a henna tattoo (cough).
Thamel in Nepal’s Kathmandu is one of the elder tourist ghettos in Asia. It was a destination of choice for hippies during the Flower Power era.
Saigon’s Pham Ngu Lao neighborhood is walking distance to most of the major sites in District 1.
It is only fair to include my own city. There is no such thing as cheap accommodation in New York City and it’s not exactly a backpacker haven. But Times Square and its surrounds is the epicenter of the tourist trade. In this scenario I do recommend pancakes at a diner for brunch if you want to eat like a local.
How many tourist ghettos have you experienced or do you try and avoid them? Is there a tourist ghetto where you live?