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Lonely Planet Puerto Rico (Travel Guide) [Paperback]

Lonely Planet , Cavalieri , Kohn
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
RRP: £13.99
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Book Description

21 Oct 2011 Travel Guide

Lonely Planet: The world's leading travel guide publisher

Lonely Planet Puerto Rico is your passport to all the most relevant and up-to-date advice on what to see, what to skip, and what hidden discoveries await you. Lose yourself in the historical stories of Old San Juan, feel the rub of sand between your toes at Playa Flamenco, or catch some beisbol; all with your trusted travel companion. Get to the heart of Puerto Rico and begin your journey now!

Inside Lonely Planet Puerto Rico Travel Guide:

  • Color maps and images throughout
  • Highlights and itineraries show you the simplest way to tailor your trip to your own personal needs and interests
  • Insider tips save you time and money and help you get around like a local, avoiding crowds and trouble spots
  • Essential info at your fingertips - including hours of operation, phone numbers, websites, transit tips, and prices
  • Honest reviews for all budgets - including eating, sleeping, sight-seeing, going out, shopping, and hidden gems that most guidebooks miss
  • Cultural insights give you a richer and more rewarding travel experience - including customs, history, art, literature, cinema, music, politics, landscapes, wildlife, and cuisine
  • Free, convenient pull-out San Juan map (included in print version), plus over 32 local maps
  • Useful features - including Month-by-Month (annual festival calendar), Puerto Rico Outdoors, and Travel with Children
  • Coverage of San Juan, Ponce, Rincon, Culebra, Vieques, Fajardo, Isabela, Luquillo, Catano, Cabo Rojo, Aguadilla, Dorado, El Yunque, Central Mountains, and more

The Perfect Choice: Lonely Planet Puerto Rico, our most comprehensive guide to Puerto Rico, is perfect for those planning to both explore the top sights and take the road less traveled.

  • Looking for more coverage? Check out Lonely Planet's Caribbean Islands guide for a comprehensive look at what the whole region has to offer.

Authors: Written and researched by Lonely Planet, Nate Cavalieri, and Beth Kohn.

About Lonely Planet: Started in 1973, Lonely Planet has become the world's leading travel guide publisher with guidebooks to every destination on the planet, as well as an award-winning website, a suite of mobile and digital travel products, and a dedicated traveler community. Lonely Planet's mission is to enable curious travelers to experience the world and to truly get to the heart of the places they find themselves in.

TripAdvisor Travelers' Choice Awards 2012 and 2013 winner in Favorite Travel Guide category

'Lonely Planet guides are, quite simply, like no other.' - New York Times

'Lonely Planet. It's on everyone's bookshelves; it's in every traveller's hands. It's on mobile phones. It's on the Internet. It's everywhere, and it's telling entire generations of people how to travel the world.' - Fairfax Media (Australia)

Frequently Bought Together

Lonely Planet Puerto Rico (Travel Guide) + Lonely Planet Dominican Republic & Haiti (Travel Guide) + Lonely Planet Caribbean Islands (Travel Guide)
Price For All Three: £31.13

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Product details

  • Paperback: 312 pages
  • Publisher: Lonely Planet; 5 edition (21 Oct 2011)
  • Language: French
  • ISBN-10: 1741794706
  • ISBN-13: 978-1741794700
  • Product Dimensions: 5.1 x 7.7 x 0.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 149,915 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Guide 15 Jan 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Bought this for my daughter & partner who went to Puerto Rico end Dec '12. They found it really useful while they were there.
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Amazon.com: 3.9 out of 5 stars  61 reviews
18 of 18 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good Basic Guide To The Island of Enchantment 11 Mar 2012
By Wandrwoman - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
This is a better than average, no nonsense guide to Puerto Rico, one of the Caribbean's best and most popular destinations and a possible, future 51st US State.

Guidebooks used to distinguish themselves by niche and the Lonely Planet guides were the go to books for outdoor adventurers and backpackers. While this particular guide has chapters that deal with the island's huge range of outdoor adventures, it now caters more to the general tourist....and is thus less distinguishable from its two main competitors: Fodors and Frommers.

The guide starts with some decent maps and an illustrated chapter on the 20 top (not to be missed) experiences. The back of the book has a fold out map of San Juan which is OK but nothing great. There is a helpful "If You Like" chapter that matches your interests (Beaches, Music, Architecture, Wildlife, etc.) with places to go. There is a monthly entertainment and event calendar and a chapter with various suggested itineraries. Towards the back there are brief but informative chapters dealing with the island's rich culture and history. Hotels and restaurants are mentioned but are not this guide's forte. The suggestions are sound and up to date but are limited in scope. Unlike other guides, there are no shopping or late night suggestions, and if there is an Island that knows how to party, it's Puerto Rico.

I would have no hesitancy to use this guide while I was visiting Puerto Rico. It is well written, comprehensive and well organized. For trip planning, however, I might want a guide with more detailed information about hotels in particular.
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Beaches, surfing, diving, rain forests, and salsa 16 Mar 2012
By Tom Brody - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
LONELY PLANET PUERTO RICO by Cavalieri and Kohan is a 311-page guidebook with blue graphic design on every page, 22 color photographs (not glossy) on the first 17 pages, and a pull-out map. The full color pull-out map shows various districts of San Juan (Old San Juan, Greater San Juan, Isla Verde, Miramar, and Ocean Park). Tiny red dots on the map indicate locations of museums, cafes, and landmarks. The 17 color photos are really of a token nature. There is one beach, one baseball player, one museum, and waterfall, one underwater photo, one rain forest, one pretty girl, and so on. In contrast, another series of guidebooks (FODORS) has glossy color photographs on every other page, with some 200 glossy photos altogether, including photos that are 2-page spreads. Choosing vacation spots in Puerto Rico from this LONELY PLANET PUERTO RICO guidebook is like ordering a mail-order bride from a catalogue that only has writing and no pictures. Anyway, let's review the writing in LONELY PLANET PUERTO RICO. The edges of the pages are color-coded with seven blue tabls, for chapters on: (1) San Juan; (2) El Yunque and east coast; (3) Culebra and Vieques; (4) Ponce and south coast; (5) West coast; (6) North coast; and (7) Central mountains. Page 42 cleverly summarizes the entire Puerto Rico experience with little icon-like maps of the country, with regions of interest in the icon shaded in black. The reader quickly learns that what Puerto Rico is all about is beaches, surfing, and snorkling. However, the patient reader will learn that there are other unique things, even though no pictures are available. These unique things include:

*NUYORICAN CAFE for salsa music. This cafe is named after New York (page 82).
*HORNED DORSET PRIMAVERA, an extremely fancy resort hotel (page 180).
*EL YOUNQUE NATIONAL FOREST with La Coca Falls (85 feet) and La Mina Falls (35 feet) (pages 92-99).
*SURFING beaches map, identifying 50 distinct surfing spots, each with a black dot indicating whether the spot has a coral reef (coral reefs are very dangerous to surfers). Each surfing spot is indicated by its name, e.g., Spanish Wall, Gas Chambers, or Oyo del Buey(pages 34-35).
*BACARDI RUM FACTORY tour (pages 87-88).
*COCK FIGHTING ARENA (page 80).
*WORLD'S LARGEST RADIO TELESCOPE at Arecibo (page 206). It is interesting to point out that Jodie Foster and Matthew McConaughey had a little tryst on the site of Arecibo's radio telescope, at least, they did in a film called, "Contact." For the prospective traveler interested in actual pictures of Puerto Rico, instead of just writing, I suggest watching the movie, Contact.

The writing in the book is lively, but not excessively fanciful and not excessively decorative. To provide one compelling example of the writing, we learn about the La Perla district in San Juan. Comments about this unsafe area lend a postive spin, as you can see, "This ramshackle hodgepodge of pastel-colored houses and steep, narrow access roads is one of Puerto Rico's most notorious slums, though as slums go, it is remarkably picturesque, at least from a distance."

Despite the need to write concise, factual paragraphs about things like restaurants and hotels, the writing is maintained at a lively level, for example, in a narrative about a tiny hotel we read, "all have bamboo furniture, basic kitchen facilities, and a fantastically sustainable ethos--they're even solar powered." (page 179)

I have only one complaint. On page 141 it states that the MAMAS AND THE PAPAS, a rock'n'roll group from the 1960s was a psychedelic band. This is false. The MAMAS AND THE PAPAS was not a psychedelic band. The MAMAS AND THE PAPAS was a "folk-rock" band. Psychedelic rock'n'roll is distinguished by scorching arpeggios by the lead guitar, with the treble turned up high, as one might find in the music by Jimi Hendrix, by Country Joe and the Fish, or by Mad River.
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Kindle Version: Way too abridged, and impossible to navigate... terrible. 7 Dec 2012
By Noneofyour DamnBusiness - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Let me start off by saying I have a small library of Lonely Planet guides, and, though I'd never admit it, I never go overseas without one. The reason I pick Lonely Planet over all the rest is because, generally, they are easy to navigate, have great maps, and put a stronger focus on budget travelling than all the rest. What's more, perhaps the most essential portion of Lonely Planet guides is the "Getting To/Getting Around" sections... knowing how to get from the airport, to the city, and then from city to city, is arguably the hardest part of travelling. Lonely Planet generally excels at this.

I don't know if it's just the kindle version, or if the printed one is the same, but the Puerto Rico guide was pretty close to worthless. The main problem is that it is extremely difficult to navigate. Clearly, nobody is going to read this thing front to back, like a novel... rather, they'll just skip to the required section and then skip back to a different one. A good travel book is organized like a good dictionary... you'll know exactly where you need to go and how to get to it. The printed versions of lonely planet are generally great with this, with a somewhat logical orginization, and colored tabs on the page edges to guide you to proper section. For the kindle version, there are only a few "bookmarks", and then, when you get to, say, the San Juan section, you have to endlessy scroll to find the section on "Sleeping", or "Getting There/Away". As a traveller who likes to hop from place to place, I found it frustrating-to-the-point-of-aggrivation to try and plan anything with this book. Something needs to be reworked with the kindle edition to make it more user-friendly... like, some simple, more general, clickable links at the beginning of each section would have worked wonders (e.g. at the start of the San Juan section, have a clickable link to the "Eating/Drinking" section, the "Sleeping" section, and, ESPECIALLY the Getting There/Away section). There needs to be more cross-links and the like to make the experience more conducive to travel planning.

The other equally terrible aspect of this book is that it seems to have been written by and for a wealthy cruise-ship traveller. This is seriously contrary to the typical Lonely Planet, that focuses on the budget concious traveller. There is literally not one single hotel or hostel listed in here with rates under $60. A quick google search shows that there are at least a few hostels in San Juan with $20/night beds, and a few others around the island. What's more, the "Getting Around" sections are almost entirely lacking. They just write it off with a brief comment on how there isn't an established island-wide bus system, and how you'll need to take shared mini-vans around the island. There is seriously lacking information on where to get these mini-vans, how much they should cost, how long the journey should take, etc., which is all standard information in your average Lonely Planet.

I give this 2 stars, instead of 1, because the maps are a SERIOUS improvment from the Kindle LP-Mexico book I purchased last year. They are clear, high-resolution, zoomable maps, rather than just poorly scanned images straight from the printed version.
7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The One Book You'll Need for Travel to Puerto Rico 19 April 2012
By Rebecca Haden - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
What do you want in a travel guide? I want plenty of information about the sights and events so that I can plan my trip before I go. Great photos help with this stage, and I like to be able to get a sense of prices at this point, too.

On the way to my destination, I like to have lots to read: information about the history of the place I'm visiting, for example, and details of the customs and characteristics of the region. Knowing these things enriches the experience for me, and helps beguile the time in airports, too.

Once I've arrived, I want maps. Lots of maps. I don't want to have to rely on having access to Google Maps on my phone, and I like to be able to write on the maps. Useful phrases in the local language are helpful, too, and a heads-up on any laws I might unwittingly break or dangers I might not consider are also good.

Lonely Planet's Puerto Rico includes all these things. It's a satisfying read for the armchair traveler, covering music, dance, politics, sports, cuisine, and daily life in Puerto Rico. It's also a terrific resource when you need a swift answer on dengue fever or San Juan's laws about drinking in public.

Above all, it's a guidebook. Each region of the island is presented with large-scale maps, street maps, and lists of sights, restaurants, accommodations, and shopping. Opportunities for outdoor sports and nightlife are given, and there are lots of special tips and bits of interesting information, from where to watch out for mosquitoes to the best places to look for ATMs.

The book is well-written, small enough to tuck in your backpack, and contains a full-size pull-out map.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Accurate and informative 22 Mar 2012
By Bukkene Bruse - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
I can only attest the value of this guide for two areas: San Juan and Rincon/Mayaguez. Rincon is indeed a surfing hub, but also offers the best sights and attractions on the west coast. Mayaguez has the larger downtown, with a number of good restaurants. The lodging descriptions in the guide are accurate and important since the lodging options can be more limited than elsewhere.

The sections of the book on San Juan, particularly Old San Juan, are extensive and quite informative. The restaurant portion of the guide, which is of course a very time sensitive section, is what I found to be the most useful section here.
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