VIDEOS OF Gen Zers and millennials — and their chats — can saturate TikTok, but spend enough time scrolling through the social media app and you’ll find yourself led to more surprising areas. Take Travel Feeds, which offer a stream of new footage shot just about anywhere in the world. Type #trip into the search field and you can watch waterfalls gushing in Iceland, elk roaming in Wyoming, sunsets unfolding in South Tyrol or hungry turtles lying in wait in Zanzibar. Many of the videos are goofy holiday snippets, but over the past few years TikTokers have matured a bit. Now, some are eager to show off their hometown, allowing wheelchair travelers to dig deeper into destinations and get a personal perspective on a place. While some of these TikTok travel guides simply serve as inspiration for trip planning, others also offer actual tours. Here we highlight five of the most entertaining.
Deep dish on Chicago
In Chicago, 40-year-old Sherman “Dilla” Thomas centers his TikTok videos on the city’s African-American history, exploring topics like redlining, segregation and gang culture. Calling himself the historian of Chicago’s favorite neighborhood, Mr. Thomas also delves into street names, local architecture, notable figures and the history of deep pizza. A ComEd zone operator and voracious reader, Mr. Thomas joined TikTok in November 2020, hoping to find an outlet for his obsession with local history. “I just have to get the stories out of me, I guess,” he said. Last year, Mr. Thomas began offering occasional in-person tours, guiding visitors through historic neighborhoods such as Pullman and Bronzeville. Its two-hour bus tours stop at places like the Pilgrim Baptist Church, considered by some to be the birthplace of gospel music, and the Eighth Regiment Armory, where black soldiers were based during World War I.