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The Netherlands (Lonely Planet Country Guides) Paperback – 1 Mar 2004

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Paperback, 1 Mar 2004
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Product details

  • Paperback: 348 pages
  • Publisher: Lonely Planet Publications; 2nd Revised edition edition (1 Mar. 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1740593030
  • ISBN-13: 978-1740593038
  • Product Dimensions: 19.8 x 12.9 x 1.9 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 618,724 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description


As usual the guide-book standard is set by Lonely Planet-- Outside --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

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A small fishing town named Aemstelredamme, meaning a dam over the Amstel river, emerged around 1200. Read the first page
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3.8 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

15 of 18 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 19 Aug. 2005
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Bought this before a family holiday to the Netherlands. Authors appear to be very young trendy and single. Sneered at anything remotely touristy or family oriented.It assumes that you are single , travel everywhere by public transport and are only interested in museums and brown cafes.
If you are taking children on a holiday this is the wrong book to buy,I got more useful information from the ferry company website.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By john le fabre on 23 Mar. 2006
Format: Paperback
As a long time resident of Amsterdam I was expecting to trash this book. I must say though, after a thorough read through, that I was pleasantly surprised. The authors' take on some of the finer points of Dutch politics, society and the environment rang true, though I do see some evidence of the new Lonely Planet that doesn't always sit with me (not always for the young, trendy and single reader, as a previous reviewer mooted, but too much hype). That said, breadth and depth is excellent in this guide and I'm prepared to put up with a bit of hype if it's reasonable insightful and takes me to the right places!
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21 of 32 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 23 Mar. 2001
Format: Paperback
Another important addition to the bookshelf for any person who wishes to explore a country without the charter holiday syndrome. Find all the best places to stay, eat and party listed with comprehensive reviews, maps and information. Whether it is just a weekend in Amsterdam or a month through the bulbfields, this will be required reading
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0 of 3 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 23 Mar. 2006
Format: Paperback
When going out for a visit, you don't really need the beautiful pictures in a travel book as long as carrying camera with you, but information (e.g., maps and guide). A few pictures would be good to increase the interest of going around but no more than tips. That's why this book is good and, most of all, useful.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 12 reviews
18 of 21 people found the following review helpful
Comprehensive and thorough, but prices are outdated. 27 Feb. 2003
By Eran Cohen - Published on
Format: Paperback
General background -
The Lonely Planet Guides contain a lot of information. They are supposed to be of help to the common backpacker. However, due to the extensive coverage they offer about the countries they discuss, they can also be a very good source of information to travelers with greater means that are interested in a thorough coverage of their destination. Moreover, they can be of use to persons that are interested in learning about the country as a starting point for further studies.
When the reader wishes to travel he has two options of dealing with the wide-ranging material:
1. To read the book almost cover to cover in advance, aiming at planning the trip down to the last small detail while learning a lot about the country - culture, history, climate, geography, conduct and so forth.
2. To read the essential highlights from the book using the contents - in a relatively short time - aiming at learning the basic information needed for getting a good head start (forget about the long "facts About" chapter). Upon getting there it is easy to use the guide on a daily basis for further information.
The guide -
This guide is a very good one with one major flaw that can't be disregarded: the prices are given in Guilders, more than a year (!) after the country has completely converted to Euros, since the edition hasn't been updated since the 1st of January 2001. That fact poses a great difficulty at planning the budget for the trip (add to that the considerable rise of prices since the transition to the Euro). This is a serious letdown and not something you would expect from a distinguished publication house. Hopefully they will release a second edition soon.
Aside from the problem mentioned above, the guide is a real help for the traveler; the information and recommendations in the different sections were most helpful and the proved accurate. A good example is the emphasis that is given to a certain rental bike service at Amsterdam that offers no advertising for itself on the bicycle, and keeps many preying eyes away from the bike. The pictures presented inside are well taken and offer a beautiful glance at what the reader might see during his journey. The guide contains the wide assortment of maps of many important and interesting towns and cities the reader might visit with the familiar marking of the recommended places to see/eat/sleep.
I would like to point out that not all the best places to visit are pointed out in the book. I reckon they can't put everything inside and they should and do promote self-exploration. I walked around for hours in each and every place I've visited and was rejoiced to find buildings and corners that were breathtaking - on my own. I recommend you to do the same as in some cases - owning to the desire to stay compact and still comprehensive - the book provides rough guidelines that are superficial and personal opinions that might not always suit your taste.
The chapters about the Netherlands in general and the special boxed texts scattered throughout the book are very interesting and are best read during the trip to answer questions that may pop up. By and large, one will have time for that only once he is home and has the special interest in the country he has just visited.
The Amsterdam chapter may be the most important to the common traveler, simply because there is so much to see and do there. The guide offers good and detailed maps of the city, but too bad they are divided to small maps that are made to fit into the book like regular pages, rather than giving the readers a folded map they would be able to take out for their own convenience. That leaves no choice but to buy a map at the local shops, a reality Lonely Planet can change in the next edition.
As to the content itself, it's a mixed bag. They do provide top-notch info but also tend to exaggerate sometimes in describing places up to a tiresome point. The pages about the transportation possibilities are thorough. In the end of the day, it is more than enough and you wouldn't need the Lonely Planet's Amsterdam guide if you don't plan to live there more than a week or two.
Final note -
The Netherlands is a strikingly beautiful country. The cities as well as the countryside are absolutely dazzling, and the people are friendly and helpful. I enjoyed traveling in the land so much that I consider it the peak of my long trip that had been mainly to the countries of South East Asia. This guide contributed a lot to the general feeling I got thanks to all its good graces.
13 of 15 people found the following review helpful
Way Below Lonely Planet standards 20 Aug. 2001
By UC Prof - Published on
Format: Paperback
I have used at least 7 Lonely Planet books, and this -though not bad- was well below their standard. (I do consider Lonely Planet above Let's Go and all other travel guides usually). But this one leaves a lot of information out (such as the cheapest hostel in Amsterdam). Its prices our outdated though it claims to be a 2001 edition. The Netherlands is not a big country, nor is the book, so why not include maps for more cities? Many towns do not have maps though the book is half the size of other guides. (i.e. it would be perfectly manageable to do so). Finally, one big way to travel around in the Netherlands is by bike. This guide is definitely insufficient to do even a 2-3 day bike trip. It needs major revising. New authors maybe?
8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
Not a good Lonely Planet 30 July 2004
By Amazon Customer - Published on
Format: Paperback
First of all, I was surprised to find out that this was the thinnest travel guide on Netherlands in the market. Granted it is printed in small fonts (albeit not much smaller than many others in the market), but the contents obviously show that this book is below Lonely Planet standard. I had read about half a dozen guide books on Netherlands and been trying to find information on a town named Tilburg, which is in fact the largest in terms of population in Netherlands. However, Lonely Planet contains essentially no information on this town, while both Fodor's and Rough Guide introduce quite a few worth-visiting places in the town and its neighboring towns. Out of curiosity, I also searched for some key words in the index of all these guide books and found Lonely Planet lacks the contents which seemingly should be included in a travel guide intended to be thorough.

On the other hand, if one is only looking for a 'rough guide' to one or two of the most touristy places in Netherlands and does not plan to explore for long, this book may suffice.
6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
By A Customer - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The most important thing about a travel guide is its usefullness as a reference tool: this book stinks in that regard. The table of contents has gone from 2.5 pages (2001 ed.) to a mere half page, hidden on the back of a photo page vaguely near the front of the book. The index in the back is also greatly decreased - making it time consuming and difficult to locate info. The amount of info in the book also seems to have shrunk. For example, I couldn't locate anything on Palais Het Loo, a major visitor attraction. However, there was definitely more info on pot "cafes" than I'll ever want. Guess we know what the author travels for, 'cause it sure as hell isn't providing a good general guide to the Netherlands.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
Incomplete and Inaccurate 16 May 2006
By Jay - Published on
Format: Paperback
I just got back from a week travelling around Holland. I had used this book to plan much of the trip and thought it was a great help before hand. Using it during the trip was a mistake. The maps are small, hard to read, and labelled poorly. The hours listed, descriptions and prices are out of date.
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