Choosing the perfect travel guide for Europe may not be as easy as you think.
Whether you’ve traveled to Europe before, or you're planning your first Continental trip, finding the best travel guide for your European adventure requires a commitment of time and effort.
Have you decided when to travel, where to travel, or how to travel Europe?
The right European travel guide can help you make these decisions. Plus it will give you options and recommendations for what to see and do while you're there.
Are you traveling with a group as part of a pre-arranged European tour?
Or, is your perfect Europe itinerary unencumbered by bus schedules, luggage calls, and other European travelers?
Will you travel during peak season with higher prices and larger crowds? Or will you choose the lower, off-peak season with Europe almost to yourself?
Do you plan to visit different regions, countries, and cities in Europe, sleeping and eating wherever you land?
Or is a set itinerary - with pre-arranged stops, hotels, and suggested eateries a more secure and comfort-able alternative?
The perfect travel guide for Europe should point you to answers for these questions. And others you've never thought of.
But first, you need to find the best Europe guidebook to match your particular travel style.
The perfect travel guide for Europe will become your best friend and travel ally.
It shouldn't be that coffee-stained book you borrow from your neighbor - the one she used for her trip to Europe a few years ago.
Hear her out on things she saw, and what she did. But her guidebook is outdated.
The same goes for the bookstore Clearance Section.
Don’t choose a leftover European travel guide that nobody else wanted. Or that’s out of date on the shelf.
Take some time to look through a range of Europe guidebooks by different authors and publishers.
Scan several chapters and excerpts from each. Note the sugges-tions for where to go and what's important to see.
Choose from guidebooks you think are the best Europe guidebooks - those that stand above the rest with the quality of their content, their photos and images, their layout and design.
Look for books you're comfortable reading. That quicken your pulse and excite you about a destination.
Do the chapters intrigue you to visit the places they describe? Do the sections pique your interest and make you want to know more.
The words will lead you to your destination.
When you find the one travel guide for Europe that gives you the best focus, the most solid information, and interesting suggestions for your trip, check out the author's credentials.
What is his personal travel experience?
Is his material first hand and specific to an area, a city, a country he describes?
Has he been there, slept there, eaten there? Does he offer personal recommendations for things to do - and more importantly - what not to do?
Are the words he writes cloned from a tourist kit or brochure? A collection of facts-only generic statements?
Or is it the one Europe guidebook that excites you and opens your mind to what awaits you overseas?
Some Europe travel guides are written primarily by, and for, students.
And while it may be hip and cutting edge, student-written travel guides are often written by first time travelers with a younger mindset.
If you're a student yourself, you should migrate toward these. If not, the recommend-dations may fall short of your travel expectations.
If you're planning a trip to Europe with a more traditional focus, you'll probably find your perfect Europe guidebook has a familiar and established name.
You'll recognize Fodors, Frommers, Insight, and DK Eyewitness Guides. Gravitate toward these
Other's with a traditional focus may not be so familiar: Kindersley, Cadogan, Steves, and Brandt.
Check them out, as well.
Your goal is to find the best travel guide for Europe that describes a pace to fit your travel style and interests.
Look for information that delivers an easy mix of history, culture, sights, and comfort that feels just right.
You'll know it, when you find it.
Most importantly, make sure you have the right travel guide to Europe by choosing only from those that are current and up to date.
Look for the current year in the guidebook title, or a recent date of publication on the copyright page.
This will ensure that always changing European destinations don’t disappoint with closed attractions or major construction, throwing your itinerary and your plans off course.
Or worse...ruining your trip.
For more info on choosing the best Europe travel guide, see:
Updated reviews of popular Europe guidebook series: