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3.8 out of 5 stars16
3.8 out of 5 stars
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on 20 March 2013
Hong Kong (Lonely Planet City Guides)

As stated in the title, it is the first time I'm almost totally relying on a lonely planet travel guide and I'm overwhelmed by the huge amount of information spread all over the book.

I must say I do not appreciate the list-approach through which all places and sights have been laid down, especially because there is really little way to tell what could be more or less important to see. For instance one thing i miss of my routard is the rating system they use to give readers a clue about how a place stands within a specific area - they rate "all sights" from 1 to 3 points.

Another frustrating thing is that all throughout the book there is no way to understand where one's going. Each chapter just begins with a list of things to see, eat, drink etc, but no notice is given about history and/or population of any neighbourhood or district whatsoever. There is a state-of-the art section at the end but it is of no use when you're approaching a specific area and what you crave for, as a tourist, is to know where you're gonna find yourself if you go there. You need to go through descriptions of bars, restaurants, markets etc to figure out what the main trends are, but no greater understanding is provided.

All along the guide authors keep suggesting a lot of planning, tours.. they even lay out a full 4-days program, but again, they give us so little background about this all that as tourists we're kind of asked to take a total leap of faith - not at all my thing.

I saw there is a smaller city guide of hong kong (former "encounters"), which costs half the price. Beside of Macau (i guess), I wonder what added value is there in a book that doesn't allow a longer vacationer to delve into the culture, the mood and the lifestyle of his surroundings.

Instead of all the cool designs, layouts and graphics I would definitely appreciate some knowledge that helped me sort out all of the lists in here.

Ps: if you felt pretty much the same, I later found the national geographic guide to provide everything LP was lacking of.
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on 12 April 2013
Had a quick visit to Hong Kong and as the guide I had was pretty old decided to get a new copy. It gives you all the information you need from stations to eating places and places of interest. As ever Lonely Planet have done the work for you. A must for anyone going to Hong Kong as the city is changing fast.
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on 7 April 2014
Oh Lonely Planet how disappointed I am in thee!
Having come to expect good things from the single travellers guide book of choice I was hoping for an informative yet informal Hong Kong Bible. Sadly, Lonely Planet's latest incarnation failed... Miserably.
The latest addition appears to put appearance over content (There's no getting away from the fact that Rough Guides are decidedly ugly compared to Lonely Planet).
Here are the problems:
1. The included maps are maddeningly awful. Two simple, not covering a wider enough area... Bad, bad, bad! Ask for a free map from your hotel or even better pick up the free MTR map.
2. The index - Argh! I just want one index... Not several! Don't expect to find what you want in the index - It's woefully bad.
3.The Top Sights - Who chose these? Of all the things in Hong Kong, the HSBC made the Top Sights? Come on!
All is not lost however... As one might expect from such a trusted travel source the Lonely Planet authors really do come up trumps with some of the hints and tips nestled within the book (it just might be a bit of a mission to dig these nuggets of information out).
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on 29 March 2013
Book reviews recommended this guide book and they were right. Handy size to carry, good tips, made trip fun time.
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on 18 November 2014
Some entries were out of date which was a little annoying.

eg. recommended restaurant in Kowloon doesn't exist anymore.

Otherwise quite good.
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on 17 August 2014
Once upon a time you'd buy a Lonely Planet book and it'd take you on a journey where you'd find places to sit down and chow with the locals and discover all those hidden gems you would never have found otherwise. This guide is all a bit too 'obvious'. There's not much in there for the adventurous traveller and the guide revolves around all those things that are Hong Kong standards - Star Ferry, The Peak etc.

As an example of the failed utility of the guide, having lived in Hong Kong a few years ago I wanted to experience authentic Dim Sum again. I turned to the LP guide to find a good restaurant in the area I was in and....I got a nice list of Michelin starred restaurants. This is not what I wanted. I wanted to eat where the locals ate, not where the local bankers ate. In the end I searched out a local review website which directed me to a marvellous place in Central, full of clanking bowls and noisy banter, busy as hell but with remarkably friendly staff. It was excellent and I got to sit and eat where the locals ate at a very good price. I'd like to say the LP guide helped me locate the place but the maps are so awful that many of the street names are blank.

Lonely Planet used to be all about discovery. The problem with this guide is it forces you to discover things via third parties or other websites rather than discover them via the guide.
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on 17 October 2014
Easy to read and apply. It came along with us to Hong Kong and was used throughout the trip.
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on 1 October 2014
Extremely informative guide book with everything I needed to know before arriving there
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on 1 September 2014
It told me lots about Hong Kong and what to do but sometime not very accurate.
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on 13 June 2013
Seems pretty comprehensive and is very well organized. The LP changed their format a couple of years ago and I found it to be pretty confusing and hard to navigate (and a bit boring too). Thankfully, they have now created a hybrid that has the usability of the older versions and good colour coding with the best features of the newer-style.
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