Top critical review
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Excellent guide - not useful south of the Amalfi Coast
on February 22, 2014
I love Rick Steves guidebooks. If you have the time and inclination to do a proper survey of your travel destination in advance, there's no better framework for your explorations. And if you find yourself in a country without the internet/linguistic ability/adventurous spirit to find your way, having Rick Steves direct your itinerary isn't terrible. (Also I always silently read the introductions in that Rick Steves voice, which I find more diverting than I should.)
So. 3 stars. Why? I'm starting at Rome and going South, so this book is 70% useless for me. I wouldn't have bought the book if I knew its limits. The material present is 5 stars, but it doesn't merit being called a guidebook for Italy. Consider it a guidebook for the most traveled parts of North and Central Italy. Even the "central" part refers more to Tuscany and Le Marche than, say, Umbria and Abruzzo. This book is very useful for people centering their trips around Northern Italy, or doing the Florence/Venice/Rome/Naples tour, but its not good outside of the typical destinations.