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Lonely Planet Discover Italy (Full Color Country Travel Guide) Paperback – April 1, 2010

4.3 out of 5 stars 43 customer reviews

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Discover Italy with the Experts from Lonely Planet
Content from Discover Italy (Full-Color Country Guide)

Experience the best of Italy. This full-color guide does the work for you, cutting straight to the must-see highlights of the country so no matter what your time frame or budget, you won't miss the best it has to offer.  Famous for its history, art and food, Italy is luscious at every turn. Lounge by Lake Como, cruise the Amalfi Coast, thrill at the Duomo, parade through Perugia...should we stop now? 

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Easy to Use

Off-the-Beaten-Track Highlights

Country-wide Itineraries

Insights from Local Experts

About the Author

Born in Melbourne to Italian parents, Cristian Boneto was raised on a healthy diet of polenta, panettone and stories of adolescent cruising in Fiat 500s. He still vividly remembers his first encounter with the 'motherland', bewitched at the thought of not needing to spell out his surname. It felt like meeting 57,000,000 long lost relatives. Smitten, the 21 year old backpacker got himself a Milanese address and spent the next two years of his life working on an intense love/hate relationship with Europe's sexiest boot. When not gorging on chocolate in Turin, competing against Latin lotharios in Naples or rubbing shoulders (literally) with Stefano Gabbana in Milanese bars, Cristian snapped and sipped his way across the continent in a chain of somewhat surreal moments, which included clubbing to Kylie Minogue at a hardcore anarchist bar in Bilbao. Not long after returning home to Australia to complete his Arts degree, he was back in Italy to document the tour of his play 'Il Cortile' (The Courtyard). Several trips and articles later, Cristian finally saw the light in 2006, ditched his gig as a TV soap scribe, and re-invented himself as a Lonely Planet vagabond. He now gets to taste test Sicilian ice-cream brioche in the name of research. Travel tip: Give Swedish pizza a miss.

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Product Details

  • Series: Full Color Country Travel Guide
  • Paperback: 400 pages
  • Publisher: Lonely Planet (April 1, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1741799953
  • ISBN-13: 978-1741799958
  • Product Dimensions: 7.8 x 5.1 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (43 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,501,494 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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By Z Hayes HALL OF FAMETOP 100 REVIEWER on April 21, 2010
Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
When I am looking for a particular travel guide, one requirement is that is should be compact (besides the usual, i.e. informative, practical, has lots of color photographs, and full of tips). The Lonely Planet "Discover Italy" guide is the size of a large paperback and can easily fit into my small handbag. The guide focuses on the following regions, i.e. Milan & North America; Venice and the Northeast; Florence and Central Italy; Naples, Pompeii, and Amalfi; and Sicily and the South. Each region is color-coded for easy reference and there is an index at the end for convenient cross-reference.

There are also some extra features such as Italy's Top 25 Experiences (e.g. wining through Chianti in Tuscany, freewheeling along the Amalfi,etc); Italy's Top Itineraries; suggestions on planning one's trip; a calendar that highlights some of Italy's festivals and seasonal offerings, etc. There are also maps (not foldouts) provided for certain cities/regions, but I would definitely advise getting separate foldout maps for the area you're planning on visiting as these maps may not suffice. Overall, this is an attractive and handy guide to Italy, but if you're planning on visiting a specific region, I'd advise purchasing a guide book that covers that region comprehensively.
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Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
Travel books fall into a couple of categories, planning, companion, remembering. In my opinion, this book is an excellent planning guide. Here are my pros and cons for this book:

* Lots of color pictures, sometimes a description of how great the Trevi Fountain is at night just doesn't cut it.
* Discrete itineraries, the book provides travel plans of differing lengths for those who just want to be told where to spend their time. (Not for everyone but handy for those who want it.)
* Lots of insider info on how to appreciate the best sites from local tour guides.
* Detailed info on select shopping, food, and lodging in each region.
* Maps, both overview and select locales with extra detail.
* Color coded by region for quick reference.
* Compact, guides of this nature can quickly large and heavy.
* Additional information, Events calendar, hints and tips, links and ideas for inspiration and additional information, as well as general reference info once on site like currency and temperature conversions.

* Due to the more compact size and greater focus on planning, info had to be cut. You won't find info on every obscure restaurant or hostel in this guide. This might not cut it for the free spirit that just wants to show up in a place and know whether the retasurant that they're staring at is any good.
* Budget specific organizing of eateries/lodging. Some travel books additionally organize the info in these categories by budget. Yes, average meal prices are included in this book but I find that extra piece of info handy to quickly find a great place to eat ro sleep.

Based on my experiences traveling Rome, I can say that this book hits all the highlights and offers numerous ways to maximize your visit.
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இ Fuzzy Wuzzy's Summary:
ѾѾѾѾ Recommended with warm fuzzies.

The Lonely Planet "Discover ..." travel books are a series of compact travel guides that are intended to provide the essential information about a country while being compact, light in weight and small in size, and replete with the heavy use of full-color photographs and maps throughout its pages. While this travel guide's 424 pages is less than half the length of Lonely Planet's far more thorough coverage of Italy in their similarly-priced Lonely Planet Italy (Country Travel Guide) book, I get the impression that their "Discover ..." series is more meant to compete with the DK Eyewitness Travel Guides and Apa Insight Guides, which, for years, were the main travel guide books that offered plenty of tantalizing color photos, albeit at the expense of informative text. Frommer's and Fodor's have also gotten into the "In Full Color" competition to offer more color photography in their travel guides too.

This travel book provides a good all-around high-level coverage of the main highlights of the various regions in Italy. It offers suggestions for 5-day, 10-day, and 2-week itineraries, some general trip planning information, and various general maps are interspersed throughout the book. The end of the book has a very useful "Directory & Transport" section that describes various essential information that you should know. In fact, I would have preferred that this section was moved more towards the beginning of the book. The inside of the back cover offers pronunciation tips to several dozen common Italian words and phrases.
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Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
Used this Lonely Planet guide on two trips this year: Once to Rome and Umbria and the other time in Lucca/Pisa (Tuscany). It was informative and the maps and pictures were wonderful. With my limited knowledge of the Italian language, it was nice to have a guide, in English, which explained details of things (i.e. pubic transportation, hours of operation for museums and sightseeing, fees, etc). As a matter of fact, I used the bus almost exclusively when I was in Lucca to get to the airport and the city of Pisa and the Lonely Planet guide helped me with everything I needed to know. I used to be a Fodor's fan for travels in the past. However, I will now be purchasing the Discover series for whenever I go abroad (in fact, Discover France is next on my list for 2012). Highly recommend!!!
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