Top positive review
6 people found this helpful
Superb for first-time travellers....
on January 18, 2003
I haven't seen the 2003 edition (my latest is 2001) but I would be shocked if Steves has cut Dijon out of the book, as it was in previous editions. This is a great starting point for a trip to France, but it's predecessor was a book about the best 2-22 days in France and I think it shows.
A marked problem with the Steves guides is that his guided tours businesses tend to fill up his top-rated hotels in many cities so that guidebook customers cannot get in. I encountered this myself in Bacharach in the Rhineland and in Venice. Frustrating.
That said, he is an excellent writer and the Rick Steves guides, unlike the Lonely Planet and Rough Guide series, do tend to discriminate between the top-flight and the ordinary. Unfortunately the Steves guides also miss things that way. I've never been able to understand why Rothenburg is in the German guide instead of any number of other German cities such as Bamberg or Schwabisch Hall for example, which possess similar ambiance without the touristic hordes. Nor do I necessarily agree with his choices in the Dordogne.
I use the Steves Guides as a starting point, then branch out and do my own research.