Lonely Planet Perth & Western Australia 5th Ed.: 5th Edition Paperback – May 15 2007
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For sheer global reach and dogged research, attention must be paid to Lonely Planet ' --Los Angeles Times, February 2, 2003
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
This book is simply not upto scratch. My final straw using this book was going to a restaurant in Northam, recommended by this book, which had been shut for several years! If Rough Guide does not cover something, it is because there is no need for it to be covered!
My advice would be to purchase Rough Guide Australia. It covers everything in the depth it needs to be covered.
We picked this book up out of desperation, but for the most part, it did a decent enough job. In typical Lonely Planet style, there were lots of budget options for food/accommodation and plenty of details on tours and logistics. Most of the information appeared to be accurate, and a few tips proved quite helpful.
My biggest qualm with book is that its layout centers around towns, and in such vast and spread-out areas, a town-by-town approach isn't the most useful. Many of the smaller towns have few attractions or amenities, and nearly all of the must-see destinations (national parks, wineries, caves, capes, coasts, etc) lie in between these small towns.
Finally, despite the extensive use of flowery adjectives, the descriptions of individual sights often remain vague. For some of the national parks especially, the description seems to be just a list of key points copied from a park map or guide, sometimes with no description whatsoever.
In the end, it did prove to be a useful aid to our tour of the southwest and south coast of WA, but we definitely needed to augment it with some of the literature and information from the local tourism agencies. It was certainly better than nothing, but hopefully further research will lead to some improvements in later editions.
One possible alternative is West Coast Australia (Footprint West Coast Australia), which seems to have better descriptions of some of the southwest parks but covers only the western edge of the state.