Friday, 16 August 2013

Guide Books - A Necessary Evil?

Do I Need a Guide Book?

When I first started backpacking, nearly 25 years ago, you had to have a guidebook. In Thailand, everyone had the same one - Lonely Planet's SouthEast Asia on a Shoestring, and you saw the same people in the same places, all clutching the same book.

Nowadays, there's lots of information available on the web - trip advisor forums, fodor forums, various blogs. The quality varies, but the good blogs are really good. And guidebooks are heavy to carry, and they date so quickly.

Image from Amazon
But a good guidebook has information that's been checked as accurate. The writers have researched the places they recommend (especially the bars) and generally, they're more reliable than relying on one person's opinion.

I have just discovered the perfect guidebook - in terms of presentation, not necessarily in content.  I'll advise in later posts if the content is correct.  

So here's a little rave about the Lonely Planet Guide to Great Britain: if you download it onto your kindle app (yes, I'm an app girl), it has links you can click on to the various sites. If, say, you're interested in a walking tour in London, you can click on the link and hey presto, you can book one.  The contents page has hyperlinks which makes navigating the book so much easier than print, AND there are maps inside that you can click on and open up. Maps of Salisbury and Exeter, not just the main centres.

How this will work when we're not connected to wifi or if the battery goes low, I have no idea. But in the meantime, I'm having lots of fun looking, and oh, did I mention the way its all contained on the iPad? No more heavy books.

No comments:

Post a Comment