Monday, November 26, 2007

A good excuse for traveling

San Francisco is one of my favorite cities because of its nice blend of cosmopolitan ennui, leftist idealism and strong neighborhood character. And Lonely Planet is my favorite guidebook publisher because their books don't advocate staying at the YMCA (at my age? Please!) or a $400-a-night hotel. They manage to provide info for slightly adventurous, yet comfort-loving travelers who don't have an unlimited amount of money to spend but don't want to take a bus tour with a dozen octogenarians. So what better book than Lonely Planet's San Francisco Encounter?
Small enough to fit in your coat pocket or purse, this guide boasts a handy pull-out street map with index, a section of 'must-see' highlights, an event calendar for the year and some handy itineraries for your particular length of stay. But best of all, the author (Alison Bing) goes through every neighborhood in San Francisco and gives you a summary of its history and feel as well as the best places to see, shop and eat. Each entry includes hours of operation, bus route numbers and trolley car lines (where appropriate). There is even a BART (Bay Area Rapid Transit) map inside the back cover. Everything you could need in the smallest of packages: a real jewel of a travel guide.

No comments: