Travel Blogger Drops $165,000 in Search of World’s Worst Toilet

Graham Askey visited 91 nations in search of the world’s worst toilet and claims he found it in Tajikistan.

Graham AskeyGraham Askey’s quest was inspired by an experience he had with a toilet in Morocco.

Some people travel the world in search of adventure. Others hope to discover new foods or experience foreign cultures. But 58-year-old blogger Graham Askey had a slightly different motivation. He traveled 75,000 miles in search of one thing: the world’s worst toilet.

“After my many travels, I thought I’d seen it all, what with stilts on stilts, sinks that appear to be full of scum and bathtubs that are apparently being used as makeshift swamps,” Askey said, according to Daily Mail.

But after spending £150,000 (about $165,000) and visiting 91 countries on six continents, Askey believes he has found the world’s worst toilet in a remote corner of Tajikistan.

“[H]After enjoying some of the filthiest bathroom facilities anywhere on the planet, the toilet in Tajikistan has to be the worst in the world – it’s the perfect hell hole,” Askey said.

As the New York Post reports, the “world’s worst toilet” in Ayni, Tajikistan, is located on a five-foot wooden bench, surrounded by “dried birds” and infested with rats and poisonous snakes. It earned its dubious honor, however, from the fact that people have used the flimsy privacy fabric surrounding it as toilet paper.

“With no toilet paper available, manufacturers have conveniently built it with a cloth cover to provide wiping functionality,” Askey said, according to Daily Mail“and it seems the locals have taken full advantage of it!”

Toilet Tajikistan

Graham AskeyAskey called this outhouse in Tajikistan the “worst toilet in the world.”

The toilet in Tajikistan is just one of many toilets Askey documented on his ‘Inside Other Places’ blog for the satirical Toilet & Urinal Restoration & Design Society (TURDS). The blogger, whose friends call him the “king of porcelain”, was inspired to travel the world and document disgusting toilets after experiencing a particularly dirty toilet in Morocco.

“Make no mistake that every entry on my list is gross beyond words,” Askey said. “Some may look okay, but believe me – and I know – they are the most inhospitable places on earth and spending a minute inside any of them would be unthinkable, except in the worst of circumstances.”

He added: “Each of these seems to attract members of the public who have not yet mastered the basic art of targeting.”

Some of the toilets Askey found include a chair in Benin with a toilet lid over a bucket, a sink in Bangladesh and a bathtub in China filled with “liters number one and two.” One of the most painful toilets Askey encountered, however, was in Indonesia. Perched on stilts 10 feet above the ground, its users had to navigate wooden planks to reach the bathroom.

This toilet, Askey noted, was also “the toilet with the least privacy,” as it was in the middle of a village.

Indonesian toilet

Graham AskeyThis toilet in Indonesia was both difficult and not very private.

Askey only photographed the outside of the toilets because they are very, in his words, “vomit-inducing” and admitted he spent “the absolute minimum time” near them because they were so gross. However, people liked the photos posted by the blogger so much that he decided to collect the top 36 in a book, Toilets of the Wild Frontier.

But Askey hopes his new book will do more than shock those who flip through it.

“While readers will no doubt find these sad public toilets hilarious, it must be understood that they represent a significant and largely unnecessary health risk which can be significantly reduced with the support of charities such as ActionAid and the World Toilet Day,” Askey said.

Indeed, like German wave reports that 2.6 billion people worldwide live without a reliable toilet. This can cause deadly diseases such as cholera to proliferate.

As such, Graham Askey’s hunt for the ‘world’s worst toilet’ is certainly shocking and even entertaining. But his book also hopes to draw attention to a very real public health issue facing millions.

After reading about one man’s search for the world’s worst toilet, discover the surprisingly complex answer to the question of who invented the toilet. Or, delve into the messy history of toilets during the Middle Ages.

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