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“Lonely Planet is best for curious and independent-minded travelers.”
The Wall Street Journal
A backpacker’s bosom buddy, Lonely Planet guides are among the most amazing travel books ever written. Extremely well organized, Lonely Planets are ruthlessly researched and written by freelance authors who’ve loads of travel experience and specialized knowledge of certain cities, countries or regions. These authors have personally traveled to foreign countries to do research without the internet, exploring thousands of both popular and obscure temples, hotels, restaurants, bars and more - they are passionate, curious people dedicated to discovering exotic, unique places for travelers to visit on their next trip.
Unlike other travel guides, where one might merely find long lists of sights, restaurants, hotels, and shopping destinations, Lonely Planets have highly extensive information on the countries between their covers, written in an engaging, informative way. Their pages are peppered with information an average travel guide might leave out, including metric conversions, necessary vaccinations, time zones, country codes, tourist seasons and a daily ‘budget’, which tells you approximately how much money you’ll spend a day in that specific country. My favorite Lonely Planet is “southeast asia on a shoestring” because it contains information on eleven different countries in one travel-handy volume. Traveling to Thailand? On those particular pages, you’ll find highlights, current events, a detailed history of Thailand, maps, sections on the culture, popular sports, religion, art, and the environment – and it doesn’t stop there! Next, the country is broken down into different regions. Bangkok and its surrounding areas have 24 whole pages devoted to giving an adventurous traveler all the information they’ll need, including details about sights, tours, festivals, hotels, restaurants, bars, clubs, entertainment, shopping, and transportation; small asides on safe and responsible travels, dangers, bargaining, hints, and border crossings, along with trivia information which, while not exactly necessary for traveling itself, is fun to learn and will allow you to impress other backpackers you meet along the way with your lofty brain powers.
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Although some might scoff real backpackers can find their way around without the help of a guide, for most people, it’s intimidating to find yourself in a new place without knowledge of, well, almost anything! What to do? Where to go? You might have read a book or two to prepare for your trip, but those books feel far away when you step out of the air-conditioned comfort of the airport into a new, exotic country where adventures are waiting just around the corner … if you know where to find them. That’s where Lonely Planet steps in. Wouldn’t you sleep easier knowing you’ve a selection of hotels in hand? Wouldn’t it be nice to have a variety of restaurants to try, ranging from the upscale and gourmet to the tiny hole in the wall places that grill your meal outside on the beach while you wait? Do yourself a favor and buy a Lonely Planet for your next vacation. It’s worth it.