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Brazil (Lonely Planet Country Guides) [Paperback]

Mitchell Schoen , William Herzberg , John Noble , etc.

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Book Description

31 Jan 2002 Lonely Planet Country Guides
Here is the real Brazil: the people, the food, the architecture and the music. Features expanded coverage of ecotourism: where to go, where to stay and how to get there. New special section on wildlife and travellers' favourite spots: the Amazon and the Pantanal and a colourful section on the world's biggest party, Carnavale in Rio.

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Product details

  • Paperback: 751 pages
  • Publisher: Lonely Planet Publications; 5th Revised edition edition (31 Jan 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1864501464
  • ISBN-13: 978-1864501469
  • Product Dimensions: 18.5 x 13 x 3.3 cm
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,351,513 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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First Sentence
Archaeologists have dated the human pres in the Rio de Janeiro area and the Serra da Capivara in northeast Brazil to about 50,000 years ago, among the earliest dates in the whole American continent. Read the first page
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 2.6 out of 5 stars  11 reviews
22 of 25 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Don't Waste Your Money On This One 8 April 2003
By A Customer - Published on
The conventional wisdom is that you can't go wrong with Lonely Planet guide, but this Brazil guide proves otherwise. The new 5th edition is little changed from the 4th, except for 1) the new Natural Brazil section. Most travelers will find this section too dry and uninteresting, while those really interested in nature will find it too superficial 2) $5.00 higher price tag.
Useful things, such as info on hotels, restaurants, entertainment, and prices are too often inaccurate. The most annoying aspect of this guide is that all prices are out of whack. LP translated prices (some of which were probably 5 years old) into US dollars when the real was 2.2 per dollar. Now it is about 3.5.
All this raises doubts of whether or not the authors actually went to Brazil to update this edition and not just slapped on a new cover and threw in a new useless section. So, if you have the 4th edition, keep using it. If not, look into buying either the Footprints or the Rough guides. The high popularity of LP is another reason to go with something else. When you go to places recommended by LP, you are very likely to run into hordes of other backpackers clutching their LP guides like bibles and afraid to make a step on their own. On a positive note, the LP guide does have useful info about Brazil's history, economy, culture, society, film and literature.
14 of 16 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Far Below Lonely Planet's Regular Standards 6 April 2003
By Christopher L. Nordhoff - Published on
I lost count of the number of errors in this book. They printed the wrong dates for Carnaval Samba Parades, the prices are in USD rather than in local currency - all wrong by an average 30%, as well. Hotels and restaurants are listed that closed long before the January 2002 publication date, and it's obvious that they haven't been to Brasilia in years - citing it as `treeless` - which I`m sure it was twenty years ago, but not today.
Unfortunately, I cannot recommend a better Brazil guide because I don't have any experience with any others, but I enjoyed ceremoniously burning this book when I left Brazil.
The most disappointing is that other Lonely Planet Guidebooks (I have used 5 other ones) far exceed the standards that this one set.
11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars I don't know what to tell you to buy, but don't buy this. 23 Mar 2004
By E. Mueller - Published on
On a three month research trip to Brazil, my husband and I began a letter to Lonely Planet detailing every mistake, omission, and out-of-date reference we could remember. Sometimes we just couldn't write fast enough! Many of the maps were virtually useless (particularly the one of Salvador, we thought). Prices were vastly different and inaccurate (and not due only to changes in the exchange rate). At the end of three months, our letter was in excess of 7 single spaced typed pages! And we certainly didn't go everywhere.
10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Inadequate: Lacks focus and opinion; out of date 9 Nov 2003
By Andrius Uzkalnis - Published on
I never viewed Lonely Planet as one-size answer to all your travels: along with brilliant LP guides to strange and not-so-strange destinations (West Africa and Canary Islands are just two big success stories) there are sad failures (Iceland & Greenland, Bolivia and anything else penned by Deanna Swaney), marred with self-important ideological preaching, poor research and lack of any writing skills.
Brazil is somewhere in between. The book does not suffer from excessive ideologization and does not fancy itself as a latter-day Marxist's political history handbook. America-bashing was kept to a minimum. This is refreshing.
There is fairly good amount of practical info (some of it is out of date), although nothing has been done to address the chronic ailment of Lonely Planet: shameless recycling of "general info", which in most cases is either misleading or simply insults your intelligence. The guide, as before, has no idea how most people book ticket these days; and nuggets of deep knowledge and inside advice like "your camera can get damaged, lost or stolen" (you don't say - how many years of travel experience helped you acquire this rare insight?) makes you wish you could have your money back.
However, useless passages are essentially harmless (apart from making the guide thicker than it needs be). More regrettable is the stuff that's MISSING: that is, focus and helpful informed opinion. It seems that, once a traveller got to Brazil, got a place to stay and figured out the cheapest way to get around, he's not entirely sure why he is there in the first place. Descriptions of the places to see are lazy, unenthusiastic and uninspired. The authors seem to have been going through the motions.
With abundance of books on Brazil on the market, there is no compelling reason to stick with this one other than brand loyalty.
7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars More than just Rio 8 Sep 2003
By Tony Theil - Published on
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
An excellent guidebook is intended to guide and not lead. The Lonely Planet Brazil guidebook is a great guide. Its maps are accurate, its plces to stay and eat are reliable, and it offers extensive info on the sights and activities for every town included in the book. But Brazil is a dynamic country, particularly its economy and that has an impact of all prices quoted in the 5th edition (2002). The actual prices in 6/2003 for meals, accommodations and transportation were consistently 15 to 20 percent less. Bus schedules changed, but not their itinerary and frequency. Unfortunately the guidebook does not offer the names of the bus companies which would be of great help, especially when departing from Rio, where there are over a hundred bus companies.
The guidebook has 752 fact filled pages including well researched Facts about Brazil, Facts for the Visitor, and Natural Brazil.
A few weak areas:
The language area should be strengthened by providing more information on pronunciation. The information they give for consonants t, d, and r is incorrect because it is only partially complete.
Where and how to exchange money needs to be updated, especially when exchanging cash.
Budget and moderately priced accommodations for Rio should be expanded. (Frommers does a better job in this area.)
Visa information needs to be updated. A Brazilian visa now costs $100 for US citizens.
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