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New Zealand (Lonely Planet Country Guides) [Paperback]

Carolyn Bain , George Dunford , Korina Miller , Sally O'Brien , Charles Rawlings-Way
4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (74 customer reviews)

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Lonely Planet New Zealand (Travel Guide) Lonely Planet New Zealand (Travel Guide) 4.4 out of 5 stars (43)
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Book Description

17 Jun 2006 Lonely Planet Country Guides
This is the top-selling guide to New Zealand on the market, and one of Lonely Planet's best sellers. It includes: a full-colour New Zealand Outdoors activities chapter and Maori Culture special section; and in-depth History chapter by the country's pre-eminent historian. New Zealand remains a top tourist destination, with most visitors from Australia (33 per cent) and the UK (13 per cent). Contributors include Gandalf, a rastafarian MP, and an ex All Black.

Product details

  • Paperback: 772 pages
  • Publisher: Lonely Planet Publications; 13th Revised edition edition (17 Jun 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1741045355
  • ISBN-13: 978-1741045352
  • Product Dimensions: 3 x 12.8 x 19.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (74 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 474,153 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description


Lonely Planet guides are a must-pack" --Toronto Star, February 2006

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
24 of 25 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great, if a little dry 28 Nov 2010
By Tim
Format:Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
This guide book gives very comprehensive information on sights to see, accommodation (divided by budget), restaurants, and more. There is also a lot of interesting history, both to the country generally, and to each specific region or town. The overall effect is, however, just slightly overwhelming, having the feeling of a directory. This isn't helped by the dense print, and lack of pictures. That said, these do enable the book to have pretty compact dimensions. I wonder if, however, some of the more obscure destinations could be omitted, in order to allow more space to elaborate on the most popular sights.

For planning a visit, there is more than enough information. However, it might be hard to prioritise, because there is just so much in the book. There are five suggested tour routes, but these only get a page each. I would like a bit more guidance on prioritising where to go.

It would be nice to have more of the maps in colour.

Lonely Planet must have recognised some of these shortcomings, because it has produced a "discover New Zealand" book, which is basically a much pruned-down version of the text of this book, but with a larger, better-spaced-out text, colour maps, and colour photos of suggested highlights to visit. If you don't quite such comprehensive information as the larger book provides, you might want to consider the "discover" version instead. But both are excellent.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Lonely planet, not as good as it used to be. 19 Nov 2010
Format:Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
I used to be a big fan of lonely planet guides but recently I've found them disappointing and the New Zealand guide is no exception. I gave this book to a friend of mine who has travelled extensively in the country and his overall impression was whilst factually accurate there were some surprising gaps and an overly onerous approach to the logistics of travelling and not enough guide material for the places being visited.

I agree with this description and in fact the same is true of all the lonely planet guides. I suspect this is because they are aimed almost exclusively at the backpacker traveller and less relevant for the modern internet age when guidebooks don't really need to into massive detail regarding how to get to places. When I visit places, I almost exclusively use the internet to make my travel and accomodation arrangements. What I need from a guidebook is lots of portable information about places to visit and sights to see when I get there. In that regard, the Rough Guides do the job much better.
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25 of 28 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Industry standard 15 July 2006
This book, as expected from lonely planet, is superb. My girlfriend and I travelled around NZ for five weeks with no other guide book in our bag, nor did we need any other. The information is easy to access, clear and truly excellent. Prices change, but the things to see and the great restaurants to visit etc do not. NZ is so breathtaking to travel around and this book will help you to get the best from it.

Feel free to check out my blog which can be found on my profile page.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A travel classic, but I miss the photos! 18 Nov 2010
Format:Paperback|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
I have been using Lonely Planet series for more years than I'm prepared to admit and have always found them an invaluable travel companion.

This is the third edition I have used of the New Zealand guide book and, as usual, it's really helping me in planning my trip.

It contains all the usual information, ranging from cultural advice and political history through to the usual "Where to stay" and "what to do".

Although the book is excellent and jam-packed with pretty much everything you would need to know, it only gets 4 stars from me for 2 reasons:

1. I remember the "olden days" of Lonely Planet guides when there were lots more colour pictures. These have now been cut to a short set of travel suggestions and small pictures, at the beginning of the book. It used to be the colour images that inspired me most, when I was flicking through the guides.

2. It doesn't always come up with the goods it promises. For example, when I was looking into swimming with dolphins, the early section of the book says that Kaikoura is the place to go and tells you to look in that section. When you do, you find a couple of lines, hidden in the description of whale watching tour companies. I really would have loved more information on this. Luckily I spotted it before we travel, so I can use the web to research instead.

That aside, it's a great book and the regular updates from the Lonely Planet writers and intrepid travellers help make the books a valuable guide that I certainly wouldn't leave home without.
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34 of 39 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent guide 18 Feb 2005
As usual with Lonely Planet the layout and presentation of the book was excellent. It certainly gives you a great template to to plan your travels and the descriptions of hotels and B&B's were always spot on. The only problem was was that a lot of the prices were already outdate even though the book was published in Spetember and I went in November 2004. There is also a little bit of a Lonely Planet trail. Sometimes its worth taking a turning not mentioned in the book and finding a beach etc with no other backpackers. However, its difficult to see how any book could do full justice to New Zealand!
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32 of 37 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Not up to LP's usual standard 20 Jan 2007
The previous editions (see other reviews) may have been great, but the new Sept 2006 version is a real disappointment. Just used it for 3 weeks in NZ. For years I have used Lonely Planets. They give you information. Something has gone wrong with this NZ one. Far too much is the worst sort of travel writers' gush. Far too little is the sort of info LP are otherwise justly famous for. A real shame - lets hope LP are going to quickly revise and re-write it. Meanwhile, I'd suggest checking out the alternatives.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Really useful guide which is now well worn after just 3 ...
Really useful guide which is now well worn after just 3 weeks, we used this a lot for places to go and things to do.
Published 17 days ago by E. Rowdon
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Published 1 month ago by M. Mc Grath
5.0 out of 5 stars good companion
took this on two trips to NZ and it was very useful, used it for tours,trips,most of our sight seeing, and for finding accommodation 'wouldn't go travelling with out a lonely... Read more
Published 7 months ago by C. Winfield
5.0 out of 5 stars A must have guide!
I used this guide when travelling around New Zealand for 6 months, it has everything you need for a great trip
Published 11 months ago by V. J. O'Neill
2.0 out of 5 stars loneley planet has gone downhill
i always used to buy lonely planet and thought they were the best but i feel they have gone really downhill
Published 11 months ago by j a harper
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant
I don't know what it is about Lonely Planet guidebooks, but they are so good. Would definitely recommend this to anyone planning a trip around New Zealand. Read more
Published 12 months ago by Siobhan
5.0 out of 5 stars Everything is in the book
If you are going to NZ this is a must buy. Loads of information and advice, beaches, walks, attractions - its all in the book.
Published 12 months ago by mart
5.0 out of 5 stars Great
As with all Lonely Plant guides, full of loads of information and very helpful with ideas and great detail. That's all
Published 13 months ago by Sydney
5.0 out of 5 stars New Zealand
Really quick delivery.

Full of useful information that will come in very handy for our upcoming NZ holiday, especially for road travellers!
Published 13 months ago by ZRPhelps
5.0 out of 5 stars Great
Good book just right for planning trip to New Zealand, informative and compact
Supplied in good condition and very promptly
Published 15 months ago by Christine Lawry
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