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

3.9 out of 5 stars 50 customer reviews

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About the Author

Anthony Ham worked as a refugee lawyer for three years, during which time the people of the world visited him in his office. After tiring of daily battles with a mean-spirited Australian Government, he set out to see the world for himself and restore his faith in humanity. He has been travelling ever since throughout Asia and Africa, all the while discovering unimagined uses for his Masters Degree in Middle Eastern politics. He is now based in Melbourne and works as a freelance writer and photographer. On his travels for Lonely Planet, Anthony has eaten rat in West Africa, been arrested in Iran and found himself constantly overwhelmed by the many kindnesses from anything-but-ordinary people wherever he's travelled.
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Product Details

  • Series: Full Color Country Travel Guide
  • Paperback: 400 pages
  • Publisher: Lonely Planet; 1 edition (April 1, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 174179997X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1741799972
  • Product Dimensions: 1 x 5.2 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (50 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,192,222 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By GX VINE VOICE on May 2, 2010
Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
Comparing and contrasting the Lonely Planet Discovery Series to the Classic Country Guide edition I would be hard pressed to recommend the Discovery series even if it was half the price - which it should be. If you cut the number of pages, use larger type and add lots of photos you can guess that it is the actual words which get eliminated. Although the page count is trimmed by 60% I would say the content is trimmed by about 75%. Instead of getting 7 pages of content - excluding photos and maps - on San Sebastian you get 1. Across the board, instead of getting 6 or 7 restaurant recommendations for an area, you get 1 or 2. To be clear, the photos are no 'DK Eyewitness' level you could probably get bigger photos from brochures.

** One alert: The classic country guide gets fairly bad Amazon reviews as it seems to incorporate feedback on every published edition, even those 10 years ago, versus the latest v9 edition. I have the classic country guide v9 and its really quite good**

What's Different with the Discovery Edition vs. the Classic edition
- Far less written content
- Less eating, drinking and sleeping suggestions
- Elimination of smaller cities
- Larger type, probably 12 point vs. 8 point in classic
- 392 pages vs. 942 pages
- Heavier paper (so its probably 3/4 the weight of the 942p edition)
- Less maps, but they are in color
- Same number of 'best of suggestions'
- Generally the same number of itinerary suggestions
- A few full page color photos
- Lots of small inline color pictures which are so small they aren't terribly valuable.
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Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
Lonely Planet's Spain travel guide begins with a list of 25 top experiences, top itineraries, and information for planning your vacation. Spain is then divided into chapters covering Madrid, Barcelona, Central Spain, Catalonia & Aragon, Spain's North Coast, Spain's East Coast & Islands, and Andalusia travel regions, each containing color maps, highlights, itineraries, colorful images, and venue details. Then the travel guide ends with historical and cultural information, travel directories, and transportation details.

The Gay and Lesbian Travelers directory provides lots of details, mentioning areas such as Madrid, Barcelona, and Ibiza as lively scenes. However when looking through the chapters, I couldn't locate a single gay and lesbian venue. Fortunately the directory provides a listing of websites and publications to supplement this travel guide.

Venue details include, where available, hours of operation, website URL, phone number, rates/fees, map page number, and more. Along with the venue details, travel tips and an events calendar provide the information needed to plan a vacation. Enticing color images make for a pleasing read, while providing inspiration. The itineraries and highlights in each chapter can make trip planning simple, or one could customize their own itinerary from the venue listings and maps.

This guide isn't complete, but for most travelers may be the only guide needed. When looking for information into something more specific, a supplemental guide may be necessary. I'm confident Lonely Planet's travel guide is a great starting point for planning a vacation though.

PROS:
Enticing color images
Detailed venue information
Ready made travel itineraries

CONS:
Some information lacking
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Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
Most causal travelers who are visiting for only a week or two and want a good overview of Spain, its abundant sights and nightlife, need this guide or one like it. This is one of Lonely Planet's better guides because it better captures the feel of Spain's rich art, history and diverse culture enough to make the traveler want to seek, read more and learn. So you step back realizing that there is alot more you wish to know and understand before visiting. Like the others in the series, this guide is generally for those who need a quick overview highlighting life and sights in current Spain and direct, practical "Getting There & Away" information on navigating public transportation. The serious, seasoned traveler will use Lonely Planet's "discover Spain" to fill in the practical pieces of the framework for their travel log and build a deeper understanding of the culture, its art and its people from other sources.
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Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
Lonely Planet and Frommer's are travel rivals and each provides valuable information. This version of Spain (Discover Spain) is a fantastic read before, during and after your trip. At almost 400 glossy pages, this edition breaks the country into seven (7) distinct areas with advice on travel itineraries. Lonely Planet places big emphasis on history and Spain has some of the most culturally significant areas, structures and topography in Europe.

Each section is broken down into the:
`Highlights'
The `Best'
`Things you need to know'
`Specific itineraries'

Along with these, each city is dissected not just into areas to explore, but cafes and restaurants, bars, hotels, "hot-spots", Information locations; all with telephone numbers, price, websites and descriptions. Small villages are also listed, giving the tourist ideas about to expect.

There are colorful large scale maps, city maps, travel recommendations (train, bus, car, etc.) also all with phone numbers and addresses and websites. Nearly every page has a colorful photograph or map showing highlights of the region. Spain is also a country full of festivals, so these are listed as well with appropriate dates and festival details. As I mentioned, this book is as much fun to read before and during and after your trip. Lonely Planet really does deliver on providing you with the `Best of Spain!"
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