Discuss a good book to read on a trip or movies that make you long to be on the road. Share your recommendations for music - both your old favorites and the new ones you discovered overseas. Brag about run-ins with the hottest upcoming bands.

What is your favorite Travel Guide publisher?

Lonely Planet
80
57%
Rough Guides
23
16%
Moon
5
4%
Let's Go
16
11%
Other - not listed above
17
12%
 
Total votes : 141

Best Travel Guides

Sean

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  • Added on: December 21st, 2000
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Jenz

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  • Added on: January 29th, 2001
Yep, they are the best. I must have nearly everyone of them (no that's a lie, have you seen the range now!). I never travel without one of the guides, (so sad I lightened my pack in India and gave up the old India guide with the cartoons in it, I guess "politically incorrect", but so funny!) Their "Read This First" series is excellent for anyone planning their first trip.
I like to be aware of a cultures social values, situation politically etc, before I get there, the do's and don'ts, the books are a good guide.
Still you can't beat getting tips from other travellers, their info is up to date and they may have been somewhere that more worth visiting than what you have planned from the book.

Sean

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  • Added on: January 29th, 2001
Jenz,

Nice one. They (lp's) are nice road maps but ther e are so many times where a traveller gives you an even better tip that just ain't in the book. But theya re definately a great blanket of security.

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wouter

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  • Added on: February 9th, 2001
Overall, the Rough Guides are my favorite guidebooks - they've got the best of both worlds, combining the "Let's Go"-type practical info on (cheap) places to stay and eat with the more solid background info on culture, politics, history, that you'd otherwise have to find in the more formal guidebooks. And they're usually good on history, getting the story across by referring to pars pro toto historical anecdotes that get skipped in the regular historical rundowns.

When it comes to Central and Eastern Europe I discovered a new series, though: In Your Pocket. Not much historical background here, but their reviews and listings on hotels and hostels, bars, cafes and restaurants, and other practical and/or (sub)culturally relevant stuff are spot-on. I went through their on-line guide Budapest In Your Pocket, because I lived there for a while - and all they write is instantly recognizable. A fun read, too.

apoivre

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  • Added on: April 18th, 2001
I find Lonely Planet books overloaded with clichés and inaccurate so I gave up using them as soon as I found an alternative - the RG series. I remember seeing it for the first time, in a bookstore in Spain. I took it from the shelf, opened it and hey, it included the disused Art Nouveau cement factory in the middle of nowhere I had seen a couple of days before. They even mentioned the year it was built and the name of the architect - both incorrect but at least they tried. Wow! And, unlike LP, they are fun to read, too.

For more of what people think of guidebooks you might check the Rough Guides forum (the Special Interests section). The name of the discussion says it all - *The Lonely Planet domination*.

n

Miamc

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  • Added on: April 19th, 2001
. . . are the Michelin Green guides. Sure, they lack the hip advice of Lonely Planet and Rough, but they provide straightforward information about sights and routes. And after reading enough of the more trendy ones I've come to the conclusion that the "hip" advice is not all that helpful. Chatting up a local is far more productive.

After Michelin I turn to the expensive and beautiful Knopf guides for their historic, artistic, architectural, and cultural articles.

My all time favorite guides, of which there are, so far, only three, are The Collected Traveller series from Three Rivers Press. They're collections of essays, newspaper articles and book excerpts about the destination. I gleaned a wealth of info about the nooks and crannies of Paris from the articles and essays about it -- far more than from any traditional travel guide.

Mia

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khumbu

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  • Added on: April 20th, 2003
Not a "eat this, sleep here" approach.

In my view best for history, culture, art, etc. Sure they have recommendations for hotels and restaurants, but the emphasis is more on "background" info than on day-to-day tactics.

For all tactical info, I use word of mouth, not the guidebooks.

Nikos

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  • Added on: April 21st, 2003
Rough Guides usually make for a better read while on the road, and I've found that their writing style conveys more insight about what each place should be like and the surrounding cultural historical background. They are still minimal guidebook-style information, but I've found it easier to pick up destinations and plan trips using a rough guide. LP is much better in practical information and finding things quick, but it also the most heavily used and nearly every hostel they mention is the number one backpacker destination. (is that good? maybe. sometimes though, you need some places with an actual chance of a vacancy!)

Jenz

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  • Added on: June 22nd, 2003
OK since first replying to this I would have to say that still yes for covering the world or so many countries with consistant quality would have to be LP but Moon Publications is a real winner for me as well. Now I carry both if I can.

Only took Moon when I went to Western Samoa but regretted leaving my LP behind because Moon did not cover accommodation as well, it missed a couple of top stays.

LP can be a bit sensational at times just for the inpact value of it such as the damning of Samoan busses or the ferry trip between Upulo and Savaii, I found the complete opposite to what they had said. It happens in other LP guides as well but I guess it all depends on the writer and how they find things.

Karin AK

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  • Added on: June 23rd, 2003
I check out the LP guides before I leave but I end up buying Moon or Rough Guide for the trip. I know that LP is the most popular so it cannot be off the beaten path. Plus, LP has a tendency to preach about what is PC and is rather slanted in politics. I just want the hard facts and interpet when I get there.
Karin, an Alaskan working in Durango, CO

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BobMorane

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  • Added on: June 24th, 2003
The internet is my fav. guide book. I do my research when planning my trip and identify couple of hotels, once there I also do my local research and try to find small new places. I never use a guide to choose a restaurant but follow my instinct and look carefully at the menu and$$ , also I concentrate on "local" places.
if you are travelling in Europe, the Michelin Green Guide is very good for culture and history, and most of the time you can find some local sources of informations on the net (like the indeed very good "In your pocket" serie mentionned above).
But best of all, you guys are my best guide. Your comments, your experience and most of all your integrity make the internet (and this communauty) the best and most accurate source of infos and advices and also is the most stimulating between trips.

Edd

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  • Added on: September 4th, 2004
Wow I tought there would be a flame war going on here I am sooo glad there isn't though.

I really like the rough guides better because of the looser writing style. And honestly LP feels like a sold out kind of publisher.

But I still look through them and by them ocaisionally
Have Kilt will Travel

Sniganoo

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  • Added on: September 16th, 2004
I think it depends. I recently bought the Rough Guide to New Zealand after looking at the competition. However, I looked again at the lp guide and liked some parts better than the rough guide. They are all very similar and tastes vary as we all know.

thebigfella

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  • Added on: September 20th, 2004
Well, it appears not to be terribly fashionable in these parts, but the only guides I ever use are LP.

I've been using them happily all over the world for many years now, and don't see any need to change what is, for me anyway, a winning formula.

TheHookah

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  • Added on: December 17th, 2004
where can I can get one of the Rough guides online?

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