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Rick Steves' Paris 2009 Paperback – November 1, 2008

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Product Details

  • Series: Rick Steves
  • Paperback: 592 pages
  • Publisher: Avalon Travel Publishing (November 1, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 159880121X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1598801217
  • Product Dimensions: 7.9 x 4.4 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.2 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (97 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,150,411 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Rick Steves advocates smart, affordable, perspective-broadening travel. As host and writer of the popular public television series Rick Steves' Europe, and best-selling author of 40 European travel books, he encourages Americans to travel as "temporary locals." He helps American travelers connect much more intimately and authentically with Europe -- and Europeans -- for a fraction of what mainstream tourists pay.

Over the past 20 years, Rick has hosted over 100 travel shows for public television, and numerous pledge specials (raising millions of dollars for local stations). His Rick Steves' Europe TV series is carried by over 300 stations, reaching 95 percent of U.S. markets. Rick has also created two award-winning specials for public television: Rick Steves' European Christmas and the ground-breaking Rick Steves' Iran. Rick writes and co-produces his television programs through his company, Back Door Productions.

Rick Steves also hosts a weekly public radio program, Travel with Rick Steves. With a broader approach to travel everywhere, in each hour-long program Rick interviews guest travel expert, followed by listener call-ins. Travel with Rick Steves airs across the country and has spawned a popular podcast. Rick has also created a series of audio walking tour podcasts for museums and neighborhoods in Paris, Rome, Florence and Venice (with more tours, including London, coming in 2010).

Rick self-published the first edition of his travel skills book, Europe Through the Back Door (now updated annually), in 1980. He has also written more than 40 other country, city and regional guidebooks, phrase books, and "snapshot" guides. For several years, Rick Steves' Italy has been the bestselling international guidebook sold in the U.S. In 2009, Rick tackled a new genre of travel writing with Travel as a Political Act, reflecting on how a life of travel has broadened his own perspectives, and travel can be a significant force for peace and understanding in the world. Rick's books are published by Avalon Travel, a member of the Perseus Books Group.

In addition to his guidebooks, TV and radio work, Rick is a syndicated newspaper columnist with the Tribune Media Services. He appears frequently on television, radio, and online as the leading authority on European travel.

Rick took his first trip to Europe in 1969, visiting piano factories with his father, a piano importer. By the time he reached 18, Rick jokes, "I realized I didn't need my parents to travel!" He began traveling on his own, funding his trips by teaching piano lessons. In 1976, he started Europe Through the Back Door (ETBD), a business which has grown from a one-man operation to a company with a well-traveled staff of 70 full-time employees. ETBD offers free travel information through its travel center, website (, European Railpass Guide, and free travel newsletters. ETBD also runs a successful European tour program with more than 300 departures -- attracting around 10,000 travelers -- annually.

Rick is outspoken on the need for Americans to fit better into our planet by broadening their perspectives through travel. He is also committed to his own neighborhood. He's an active member of the Lutheran church (and has hosted the ELCA's national video productions). He's a board member of NORML (working to reform marijuana laws in the USA). And Rick has provided his local YWCA with a 24-unit apartment building with which to house homeless mothers.

Rick Steves spends about a third of every year in Europe, researching guidebooks, filming TV shows, and making new discoveries for travelers. He lives and works in his hometown of Edmonds, Washington, where his office window overlooks his old junior high school.

Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

43 of 44 people found the following review helpful By Love2Travel on December 24, 2008
Format: Paperback
I've traveled to Europe several times over the past 8 years and purchased various guide books for the planning of each trip and as a guide during the trip. By far the best and most reliable is the Rick Steves series. Factual information. I like it because he has a back door philosphy. I feel like I'm getting the background information from someone that has lived there for years. I also love how I'm able to use it as a guide once I'm there too. He has walking tours of museums - of course I typically purchase the musuem audio tours but in the random time that I don't pay for it, it's nice to have one in the guidebook. I like knowing the hours and cost of sites. Also the restaurants and hotels he has reccommeded have always been better than expected. I will always use Rick Steves whenever traveling to Europe. I know that he updates these yearly! I just wish he made these books for other parts of the world!
- Love how everything is described in detail. Ina country where I don't speak the language, I expect to be prepared when I walk out of my hotel room and I was.
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59 of 63 people found the following review helpful By Lee from Virginia on October 18, 2009
Format: Kindle Edition
I have long used and appreciated the Rick Steves guidebooks, and thought having them on my Kindle would be an excellent way to save luggage weight and space on trips. However, on the Kindle the guides are disappointing. The neat walking tour maps that are so informative in print are so small they're unreadable on the Kindle; similarly, photo quality is very poor and there is no way to zoom these graphics. In addition, the guide text is organized so that what are "sidebar" articles in print require a link and a jump to another page on the Kindle and navigating these links on the Kindle is clunky and slow. I like my Kindle for novels but for guidebooks like the Rick Steves series, you are better off with the print edition.
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31 of 31 people found the following review helpful By S. Ball on February 5, 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Rick Steves is a real-live "regular" traveler, who understands that most of us don't stay at the Ritz Carlton, don't eat at 3-star Michelin restaurants, and that we crave authentic travel experiences. His guidebooks are updated every year, and they are meant to be used and tossed. Try tearing out the pages you need for a museum or site, instead of taking the entire book--it's liberating. You can also download free podcasts that will give you Paris tours! The advice is practical and affordable--with just one guidebook, you will have the best possible travel experience.
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21 of 21 people found the following review helpful By G. Misthos on January 24, 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
A previous reviewer only gave this book 3 stars, stating there was little information on the Carnavelet Museum and the Pantheon. I feel compelled to set the record straight. When we were in Paris in '07 we went to the Carnavelet and had the '07 edition. The detailed and informative descriptions of the various rooms in the Rick Steves book helped make our visit thoroughly enjoyable. Again, to set the record straight: I just recieved the '09 edition as we are hopefully going back in the fall--starting on page 286-300 is again his detailed section on this museum. If you are interested in history, I highly recommend visiting this free museum, and be sure and take the Steves guide with you. On pages 57-59 Steves writes of the Pantheon and certainly discusses who is buried there.

Steves is at his best in his detailed, informative, helpful, and interesting museum tours. In this book that includes the Louvre, Orsay, Orangerie, Carnavlet, Marmottan, Picasso, Pompidou, and others. Trust me, don't go to any of these museum without this book! He is also the best for all the practical information you need to know, as well as discussing interesting walks and neighborhoods. While I recommend a second guide book as well (Frommer or Fodor's), I would not even consider going to Paris without the Steves book. Apparently now you can go to ITunes and download Steves museum tours onto your Ipod!!!!!
Tip: If you visit the Carnavlet, go in the morning, and then walk to the nearby Place des Voges for lunch, and then visit the Victor Hugo museum which is right there in the square.
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20 of 20 people found the following review helpful By C. Parks on September 9, 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I received my guide today and the printing error has been corrected. Although my trip to Paris isn't for a couple of months, Rick Steve's guides are always top notch and have served me well in the past. The purpose of this review is to let buyers know that the errors noted by previous reviewers have been corrected.
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful By J. Norman on June 4, 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
My wife and I recently ordered several books in anticipation of a trip to Paris. This book was really outstanding. There were a few exhibits that were closed, but the directions were excellent and saved us a lot of time on an 8 day visit.

We ate lunch at the Jules Vern Restaurant in the Eiffel Tower. I checked my American Express bill and discovered that 270 Euros for lunch turned out to be $385. Ice tea was 10 Euros a glass. The wine was 22 Euros a glass. The fixed price meal was 85 Euros each. I have never spent that much for lunch before and doubt I will ever do it again. The views were wonderful, but the meal was not that great.

We were planning to have dinner at the Guy Savoy Restaurant at 18 rue Troyon; however discovered that the dinner started at $275 Euros each for a dinner in which the main course was stuffed breast of pigeon. We were told that the pigeons are not from downtown Paris, but are country pigeons so they taste better than pigeons that spend their lives choking of gas fumes. In the end we chose not to eat there as we felt the meal would run between $900 and $1,000 after wine.

There were some great restaurants that are not mentioned in Rick's book. A real standout is Le Petite Acacia, 58 Rue de Acacias in District 17. Their pepper steak is wonderful. We stayed near the Arc de Triomphe at a brand new Renaissance by Marriott on Avenue de Wagram that opened last month. Sophie at the front desk, Xavier the Concierge and the entire staff made our stay wonderful. To get around you must use the subway system. It is a very inexpensive way to travel. Our trip to the Chateau de Versailles was accomplished using the subway and RER train. Total cost from the Metro station near the Arc de Triomphe to the train station at Versailles was only 5.
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