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on 18 June 2013
This is what I call a little luxury book but only little in size compared to 'The Splendour of Lascaux' which is large but more of that later. 'Cave Art: A Guide to the Decorated Ice Age Caves of Europe' by Paul G. Bahn is essentially a guide to the caves of Europe that are open to the public and some very good information on accessibility, usability and likability. My wife and myself have a partially sighted daughter so this book is the best one I could have bought for starters. Indeed it will be on my shelves in my humble house as long as I live, at least, and not just for mere decoration. This is the very first book I have dedicated to this subject and the illustrations are excellent in detail. For the purposeful holiday maker to the specialist this is an inspiring but not a patronising book being for every man or woman with a genuine interest in life.
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on 26 July 2010
A tour of Palaeolithic caves in the Dordogne was an extraordinary experience and (for me) a holday of a lifetime. If you buy this very practical and useful guide you will be able to plan an even better exploration across Europe! This is an affordable guide to start with. Many of the caves have glossy expensive guides when you get there... but start with this. Oh, and by the way, you need to read the first of the 3 books by David Lloyd Williams: "The Mind in the Cave". There's more to cave art than you think. Palaeolithic people did not go deep into the earth to paint a picture to while away a rainy afternoon! Once you start studying prehistory you will get hooked...
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on 20 November 2014
This is a useful book, but also very flawed. There is a lot of information about the history of each cave and its art, but this information is available elsewhere. If you are buying this book it is probably because you want to use it as a guide whilst physically visiting caves. Unfortunately although useful in as far as the book provides a list of visitable caves and some contact info, it is largely a missed opportunity to be genuinely helpful.

For example a map and description of the location of each cave would have been invaluable, as finding the caves can be difficult. Lots of the sites around Les Ezyies are actually within walking distance of each other but this is in no way made clear by the text. Many of the addresses given are actually the administrative addresses of the body that manages the cave, the physical location of the cave is often not given.

Despite apparently being revised in 2012 a great deal of the information is out of date and thus planning in advance and much googling is necessary. I would say that we found at least half the visiting arrangements described in the book were out of date in summer 2014. A book like this really needs an accompanying website to host up to date information.

So a little less information about each cave, and a little more attention given to the niceties of an actual guidebook, like maps etc would have immensely improved this book.

I think it is still useful as there is sadly at present no better book available, but do telephone the tourist office in the area you are planning to visit, and consult google, for up to date information.
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on 25 March 2013
An excellent reference book which gives practical details of all the caves with Ice Age art which are currently open to the public.
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on 17 October 2014
This is a splendid, portable, practical but inspirational guidebook, nicely illustrated and with a good introduction too.

It gives you really useful practical information about access to the sites, opening times, visiting arrangements, what conditions and facilities you can expect at each one and even where the nearest restaurants are to be found.

One site in the UK is covered, Church Hole and Robin Hood's Cave, in Welbeck, Worksop. Across the Channel , it covers 3 museums and 24 sites in France; 21sites plus a museum and an archaeology park in Spain; 2 sites in Portugal and 4 in Italy.

This excellent book combines scholarship, honesty and practicality so brilliantly that it will make you want to set off on your travels right away. You have been warned!

Highly recommended.
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on 1 May 2011
A small book with some photo's and information about the better known caves. I would have liked more information about the history of the caves but this is just a basic guide.
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on 6 February 2015
I bought this revised and updated version to replace my first edition. I will be visiting many of the caves in Northern Spain and the Pyrenees and the four stars are for the concise information about the caves together with practical information for visiting the sites. This is proving to be essential reading at this stage of the planning process.
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on 14 November 2014
We took this with us on a visit to the Dordogne area in France and used it extensively . It was a great guide for the several caves we wanted to visit. It had really useful advice about access and facilities. We even bumped into the author on one cave tour !
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on 1 February 2013
I like it. It is a best example of the guides on the Cave Art. The author is an eminent specialist on the rock art.
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on 2 December 2015
A useful guide, particularly if you want to search out the less commercial sites
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