Frommer's Italy Day by Day Paperback – Mar 15 2010
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From the Back Cover
Map your adventure
Plan a trip that suits your interests. Follow ourrecommended itineraries or mix & match to createyour own. Explore a region in depth or hit the highlights. With Frommer's Day by Day guides, the choice is yours.
117 self-guided tours with maps that show how to get from place to place
Hundreds of photos,plus engaging insights on history and culture
Detailed reviews of hotels,restaurants, shopping, and nightlife
Full-sized foldout mapof Italy in a handy plastic envelope
Spotlight on Italy
Complete coverage of Italy's history and culture beginson page 687. The following features take a closer look at the most compelling aspects of Italian culture.
Leonardo's Last Supper (page 22) Deconstructing a masterpiece
The Great Churches (page 44)Italy's best churches at a glance
Michelangelo's Pietà (page 68)Genius, grace, and pathos in sculpture
Roman Emperors' Hall of Fame (page 144)The craziest emperors in Roman history
Crazy for Calcio (page 188)The essential guide to Italian soccer
A Grape Guide (page 242)Italy's wine regions in brief
Meet the Borgias (page 330)Inside Italy's most notorious family
Is Venice Sinking? (page 366)Why this island city may be going under
Hitting the High Notes (page 428)Italian opera's greatest hits
La Moda (page 470)A who's who of Italian fashion
Cinema Paradiso (page 514)Italy's passion for film
A Day in the Life of Julius Publius (page 586)Hour by hour in ancient Rome
About the Author
Sylvie Hogg (chapters 1, 4, 5, 6, 12, and 13) has been dutifully traipsing the bel paese, in the name of research for American and British travel guides, for the past decade. The Eternal City and all things ancient Roman are her fi rst love, though she also confesses a serious weakness for the natural splendor of the Bay of Naples and the wine of southern Tuscany. She lives in Kansas City, Missouri, with her husband, Tim. They had their fi rst child, a bambino, in July 2009.
Stephen Brewer (chapters 1, 2, 3, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 14, 15, and 16) is an editor and writer who has worked in magazines, books, radio, and corporate communications for almost three decades. He had his fi rst sip of a real cappuccino in Rome in the early 1970s and has been savoring the pleasures of Italy ever since.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
I have to say that this guide is fabulous for the right trip. If you are doing a self tour across Italy (a few cities in a few days) than pick up this guide. If you are doing one or two major cities and spending a significant time there, I would pick up one of Frommer's more regional guides or a guide that is just for Rome or Venice or ____________ specifically.
Given that you are someone who is traveling throughout Italy stopping a few days at each city, this book is a great guide to help you wade through all the touristy crazy. I am someone who likes a my trips to be half planned (of course we have to see the Basilica in Venice!) and half surprise by wandering aimlessly (because the best parts of a trip are often getting lost and discovering sites/food/beauty/etc. off the beaten path!). This guide book encourages both.
The best part is the breakdown of "What to do if you have 1/2/3 day(s) in ____(City Name Here)____." I found this helpful in prioritizing my trip. Looking at all three days I knew that there were some that were "must dos" but others, like a modern art museum, that I didn't want to do on this trip as I have seen dozens in my lifetime. Having a list of all the big attractions is very helpful in planning but you must customize to fit your tastes.
I know the internet is chock-full of information but there is something about a guidebook that enhances the pre-trip experience. Carrying it around to read on a lunch break at work, during a child's baseball game, or doctor's office while getting overdosed on pills to clear up the cold that you happened to catch days before your trip it just adds to the excitement.
In all, this guidebook really helped shape my trip by giving me the famous sites in an easy-to-read format but MUST be paired with two important companions:
1. Detailed street maps of your destination(s). The provided maps will not help you get around on foot or guide you back if you are lost.
2. Public transportation maps (trains, vaporettos, buses etc.). I am not brave enough to rent a car in most areas of Europe and public transportation is more than sufficient (Europe has the US beat in this area). Knowing what line to take, where it stops, and a timetable is essential to get where you need to when you need to.
Enjoy your trip!
As with most guide books, you get info on pricing, some cultural notes, contact info, and location info, but Frommer's does this in Great detail, even outlining bus routes and detailed info on what you'll see when biking on specific dirt roads! There is info on attractions geared toward specific interests or types of travelers (stuff for kids, foreign students, gay couples, and people-watchers; church concerts, jazz clubs, wine, wine, and more wine--there's something for everyone!)
The book also has more customizable but still pre-planned trips of different lengths, from the 2-week country-wide tour to weeklong or 3-day regional trips. There are cultural and historical notes, as well as a very concise phrase book and detachable map in the back.
I have to say that I have found the book incredibly useful-- it is full of facts and handy information but most importantly is incredibly practical for planning a trip with all of the "best of" itineraries and the beautiful photography to illustrate it and help decide what you want to see. The sidebars and conversational tone also mean that it is entertaining to read, which is rare.
I was not previously familiar with the Day by Day format, but I will be purchasing these from now on. I hope they are all as good as the Italy version!
For decades, Frommer's meant traveling to some exotic destination on X dollars a day. Many Americans visited Europe in lock-step, not wanting to deviate from the Frommer's guide for one second. Boy, have times changed! This Frommer's encourages you to create your own adventure while making sure that you don't miss the important sights, make sure you have a warm bed to sleep in, and that you get to taste the wonderful food that is so much a part of Italy. It's so different from the other travel books I've used that it shouldn't even share the same shelves.
This book is like a combination atlas, travelogue and cool friend helping you plan your trip. All you do is pick one of the 117 different ways to see Italy and customize it to perfection. Of course, you can follow any of the 117 tours as-is, because they range from the "Best of Italy in one week," to my mother's favorite, "Florence Shopping A to Z." You can even find the best tours for a single day in a number of cities, which will make you feel a lot better about that one day layover in Italy while on a business trip. There are driving trips even though the book strongly suggests that you leave the driving to the experts. (After my last trip to Italy, I strongly agree with them!)
Then again, you could simply look at the thousands of photos in the book, pull out the enclosed map, and dream of the trip you'd take if you had unlimited time and money.
Frommer's day-by-day looks to me like a great travel book for anyone making a longer trip to Italy. The layout is excellent and the maps are very clear (though I think a hand held GPS is a must for this kind of traveling). It covers a lot of ground and the entries are short and too the point. For more info on a particular area you might want to buy a guide book that focuses on that redgion (from Frommers or others). However if you doing something like a car trip around the whole country I can't think of a better guide book to have handy for you trip. It's a great way to make impulse side trips.
My only slight negative is that I can see by the directions that they won't really get you around Italy. It you think you are going to rely on them you might be disappointed. The city road systems and the lay of the land can make finding you way around challenging. There are worst things than being lost in Italy, but again, a small GPS is a great thing to have with this book.
Overall another great guide book from Frommer's.