“For my part, I travel not to go anywhere, but to go. I travel for travels sake. The great affair is to move.” - Robert Louis Stevenson
TOP LOCATIONS & TOPICS
Spain & Portugal
Netherlands & Belgium
Switzerland & Austria
Turkey, Croatia & The Balkans
Russia & Eastern Europe
Iceland, Greenland & The Arctic
Lonely Planet: Europe
If you have to choose one book and one company to trust with your European trip, it is Lonely Planet. They are the largest travel guide publisher for a reason; their guides are amazingly researched, organized intelligently, and very complete. We recommend either Lonely Planet Europe (the standard mid-range guide) or Lonely Planet Europe on a Shoestring (for those with frugal budgets). Both versions are heavy books with over 1000 pages of planning advice and detailed maps, but only a few pictures. Make sure of course to find the latest, most recently edited version.
Rick Steves: Europe Through the Back Door
One of the best guidebooks for the first time traveler to Europe who wants specific advice on how to intelligently travel in Europe is Rick Steves: Europe Through the Back Door. His specialty is Europe, and his guidebooks have been around since 1980. While his location specific books are true travel guides with very specific recommendations on what and what not to do, please note that Europe Through the Back Door is more of a higher level handbook on how to get the most in a European trip. Learn more about the Rick Steves series here.
The Savvy Backpacker's Europe on a Budget
Those looking to really travel on a budget will like The Savvy Backpacker’s Guide, written by James Feess. Feess is an American who caught the travel bug when studying abroad in England in 2006, now traveling frequently around Europe with his wife. The book provides a wide range of general travel planning tips, and specific guidance on hostels, transportation, and cost-effective things to do. The website itself is also recommended.
Neither Here Nor There, by Bill Bryson
One of travel writer Bill Bryson's first influential travel experiences was his backpacking trip across Europe in the seventies, in search of enlightenment, beer, and women, and not necessarily in that order. He was accompanied by an unforgettable sidekick named Stephen Katz, his hiking partner many years later in Bryson's A Walk in the Woods. Twenty years after that backpacking trip, he decided to hilariously retrace his journey. Click here for our review of Neither Here Nor There.
Over Europe, with text by Jan Morris
Over Europe is a beautiful coffee table book with photos chronicling the story of post-war Europe, with accompanying text by the noted travel writer Jan Morris. The book was a two year project supported by fourteen top aerial photographers. Readers will enjoy the beautiful views into this great continent’s architecture and beautiful settings. Click here to read our description of Over Europe.
See our travel guide and travel book recommendations for...