- Series: 500 Places (Book 25)
- Paperback: 480 pages
- Publisher: *Frommers; 1 edition (October 5, 2009)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0470160616
- ISBN-13: 978-0470160619
- Product Dimensions: 5 x 0.9 x 7.9 inches
- Shipping Weight: 14.4 ounces
- Average Customer Review: 31 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,717,692 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Frommer's 500 Places Where You Can Make a Difference Paperback – October 5, 2009
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Make a profound difference in how you travel. This guidebook leads you to places around the globe where you can serve communities while exploring them in a unique, connected way. From caring for orphans in Delhi, India, to teaching English on the beaches of Salvador, Brazil, to tracking dolphins in Oahu, Hawaii, or building a school in Madagascar, you'll find an adventure that matches your interests and lets you see your destination with new eyes.
The book will inspire you with both short- and long-term travel choices, while giving you accurate pricing, trip provider contact information, suggestions on nearby sites to visit, and advice on how to pick the right trip for you.
See the World in Extraordinary Ways
Care for baby elephants in Sri Lanka
Restore a medieval village in Tuscany, Italy
Work with scientists inside the Smithsonian in Washington, D.C.
Live with the Maasai people in Kenya
Teach swimming to children in Fiji
Study mammoth bones in South Dakota
Find a Place Where You Can Make a Difference
'This inspirational guide offers a glimpse into the unwavering courage of the world's most downtrodden and underprivileged survivors.' (Real Travel, February 2010).
Top customer reviews
This book has some serious flaws. Among these are a rather meagre look at the actual benefit of spending one's time performing good deeds, both for the traveller and for the presumed recipient. Many of these programs are expensive, and it's rarely (if ever) made clear how much of the money actually goes to the "right" place. I've done a lot of traveling in odd places, and I know for sure that spending $3000 for a week or two to teach English in a very inexpensive place isn't doing anyone much good, unless the great bulk (like 80% of more) is actually going to the supposed beneficiaries, and in a beneficial way. Is it? Can't tell from this book.
The book also tends to romanticize these projects and their likely results. Many of the countries listed would take a few weeks of visiting before you'd even have a sense of bearings; it's not likely you'd accomplish much of anything in a week or two. The contexts are misleading - no, you won't really be "Hunting Vlad the Impaler" in Romania. I've spent a lot of time in Eastern Europe (for example), and I've spent as little as an hour or two in a village before being asked to consider teaching English there, with food and board paid (plus a little for extras) . . . so it seems crazy for me to think one should pay $2500 for the privilege of doing the same for a period as short as two weeks.
There is little real information on each program (less than two-thirds of a page, on average) and the listings are geared more to programs that sound good, rather than being the most needed. If you're the sort of person who wants to make a difference, can afford thousands of dollars, and only has a week or two . . . then go somewhere for a cheapish vacation and donate the money you save to a credible program. Or structure things so that you can take a half-year and go somewhere where you really can have an effect, because you will have put the time in. A visit to the relative "region" section of Lonely Planet's "Thorn Tree Forum" and a simple query is a much better means of finding programs where you can help. Then you can donate the $20 this book cost somewhere better, too.
Most recent customer reviews
1. Organizes available places by interest
2. Includes some photos and a "next steps" section at the end of each opportunity