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Whenever you go on holiday you need a travel book, it is a MUST. It goes without saying why but I''m going to tell you anyway. You are in a different country/city, you may know exactly where you want to go but you may not know how to. This book does not only tell you about the main, globally known attractions but about the smaller places that let you access the nooks and crannies of country/city to understand the culture of the place you are visiting. It gives you sound information on how to actually get to these destinations, which is always advantageous when in a new and different place. Moreover it does not just tell you about how to get to these places but it also gives you information on the general transport system too, making it easy to independently plan your journey. The book also gives information about these destinations, the bigger ones have more information. I liked that it gave historical information as you got to learn about them rather than just visit them. It also gives practical information like the prices and opening times, and particularly for Vatican City it asserts that you must cover up, which is excellent as we saw many people being turned away for wearing revealing clothes. Finally, the book is pocket size which is great when travelling all day. It can easily be fitted into a hand bag or even carried around in your hand as it is not heavy at all.
Straight after booking mine and my boyfriend's trip to Rome, I set out trying to find a couple of different guide books. Looking things up on the internet is all well and good but when you're there, you need something else that you can refer to. I was lucky enough to find this book, the Eyewitness Travel Rome Pocket Map and Guide in The Works for only 99p. I figured that even if it was rubbish, the map would come in handy.
This book has a lot more information than I was ever expecting it to have. At the front of the book is a small, colour coded map which explains the different areas of Rome. It also explains that this is how the book is laid out - with attractions explained in each of these smaller sections. I loved how the book was laid out because it made it easy to see things in one area at the same time instead of going backwards and forwards all the time which ultimately, would waste a lot of time.
At the beginning of each section, a larger version of the area being described is shown, with page numbers for certain attractions. The first page of each section gives a brief overview of the area with historical information. Then, different attractions are explained, most of them being given about a paragraph each. However, bigger attractions such as the Colosseum are given more space - sometimes a couple of pages. Again, historical information is given about attractions as well as information about opening times and prices etc. Obviously, as this is a guide, things like prices change so you should be prepared for some things to be a little different when you get there.
At the back of the book is an index of each attraction with page numbers so that you can look somewhere up quickly and easily. The index is very easy to use and it saves trawling through the whole book again trying to find the attraction you want. Also at the back of the book is some very useful information about emergency services and telephone numbers, transport and some space is even given to restaurants. I feel as though the space given to restaurants could have either been left out or given more space as there really wasn't enough there to make it useful. The back of the book also gives some useful Italian phrases like how to ask for the bill in a restaurant.
This book is the perfect size to carry around in a handbag, which is exactly what I did. The map came in extremely handy for some of the harder to get to attractions and it saved carrying around a massive book. Well worth buying!