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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Perfect for an armchair escape
As with Lonely Planet's other publications this is a great coffee table book with beautiful photography and geographical and historical information for numerous places across the globe. 'Great Journeys,' is split into 8 sections: Overland, Rail, Explorers & Conquerors, Rivers & Seas, Ancient Trade Routes, Literary Journeys, Road and Walks & Pilgrammages with between 5 and...
Published on 29 Feb 2012 by K. Wright

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Great pics, shame about the text!
Remember the days when Lonely Planet was all squat toilets and hitchhiking on goat lorries? It would seem their erstwhile globetrotting demographic has ditched their flip-flops for slippers if this hefty lump is anything to go by.

With 311 A4 pages and weighing in at almost two kilos, this monster will definitely not fit in your backpack. (It will, however,...
Published 11 months ago by Rachel Sirotinina


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1 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Delight at some of the World's Greatest Journeys, 23 Nov 2011
By 
Jack Percival (London, UK) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 1000 REVIEWER)    (REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Great Journeys: Travel the World's Most Spectacular Routes (Lonely Planet. Great Journeys) (Hardcover)
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Just because this is another book from lonely planet, don't get me wrong - it isn't a travel guide in the typical sense. While it could be a great source of information for budding world explorers don't expect to find a detailed guide for each of the the destinations featured. Do expect, however, to be struck by the beauty of large pictures of fantastic locations across the world and find yourself longing to visit these fund flung locations just to enjoy some of the greatest scenery pictured. Split into sections including great roadtrips (think Route 66 or the Icefields Parkway) and literary epics (think Round the World in 80 Days) each journey is described in a couple of pages of pictures with some accompanying text.

If your looking for something that you can put on your coffee table and browse at your leisure or something that you can give as a gift to someone looking for travel inspiration this Christmas, then look no further. Lonely Planet lends its expertise and fantastic pictures to this large guide - well worth more than just a look.
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2 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The perfect present - go on treat yourself!, 26 Nov 2011
By 
Hilary French - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Great Journeys: Travel the World's Most Spectacular Routes (Lonely Planet. Great Journeys) (Hardcover)
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This is a beautifully produced and inspiring book. Whether you want to find new places to go, read about old friends, or just wallow in the possibilities, this is the book for you.

Being the quintessential armchair traveller, I wanted to compare it with books I've read, so I turned first to the Literary Journeys section. Oh wow! From the Odyssey, to Che Guevara's Motorcycle Diaries, to RLS's Travels with a Donkey and more. A brief history for each, must-sees, the journey today, shortcut, detour, and further armchair reading. I am in paradise here. It adds to what I know, inspires me to find out more, and if anything will get me out there doing it, this book will! The other sections are equally fascinating.

It is the most perfect present ever - either for someone you really, really like, or for yourself! Whether you want to spend the winter daydreaming, with travel brochures, more travel books and maps, or actually getting on with planning your travels for real, this book will entice and inspire you. Terrific!
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2 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Coffee Table Bliss., 21 Nov 2011
By 
Bob Salter "Captain Spindrift" (Wiltshire, England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Great Journeys: Travel the World's Most Spectacular Routes (Lonely Planet. Great Journeys) (Hardcover)
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Lonely Planet are something of a publishing phenomenon these days. Their famous and detailed guides covering some of the most obscure destinations on the globe have become the stuff of backpacker legend. How many Lonely Planet guides have been to Macchu Picchu and Angkor Wat I wonder? I have a fairly large collection myself, some of places that I simply yearn to travel too one day. It is this yearning to travel in so much of the populace which they are able to exploit to such great effect. Now they are branching out even further and muscling into the coffee table travel book market of the generalised variety. They have also published a "1000 great experiences", and are clearly big enough to take such risks. Personally I prefer more specific travelogues like the works of Bruce Chatwin, Wilfred Thesiger and Dervla Murphy, but I am not averse to to a nice weighty tome with a cavalcade of lovely photos to peruse at leisure in front of the wood burner. Admittedly the seasoned traveller will be familiar with many of the locations/journeys described.

This is the sort of book you can leave in the living room and pick through at your leisure. Stunning photos and thematic travel sections that include "Explorers and Conquerors", "Ancient Trade Routes" and "Walks and Pilgramages" amongst others. As Lonely Planet put it, from ancient trails like Macchu Picchu to modern classics like Route 66, there is plenty of variety. My personal favourite was the "Rivers and Seas" section which of course had to include one of the worlds greatest miracles, that ancient river of mythical status the Nile. The Dakar Rally route also made for an interesting read, not that I will be competing any time soon! Perhaps histories greatest traveller was the remarkable Marco Polo who is of course also included. There is enough here to satisfy any armchair traveller, and perhaps to ignite more ambitious travel ideas. If not, the next best thing is to read all about it in a comfy chair. Lonely Planet are up against it in an already saturated market. To have any hope of success your book has to compete against some stiff competition. This one is not cheap, but it looks well worth the price tag, and should be a good seller on the run up to Christmas, which is no doubt what Lonely Planet are hoping for. I wish them well!
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1 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The romance of armchair travel in a delightful book, 20 Nov 2011
By 
Thomas Pots "T Pots" (England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Great Journeys: Travel the World's Most Spectacular Routes (Lonely Planet. Great Journeys) (Hardcover)
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
This is a really good coffee-table book, combining fact, myth, stories, and daydreaming, with page after page of fabulous photography. Lonely Planet has put together a collection of 74 epic journeys through locations around the globe, and presented them, four pages per journey, with informative and engaging texts, route maps, notes and tips. The text occupies about one-third of the space, and the remaining two-thirds are given over to large colour photographs of the scenery and kinds of people you may encounter along the way.

The journeys are grouped into eight categories, including overland, explorers & conquerors, rail, and others. Grouping is useful if you are seriously considering making a particular kind of journey, but otherwise it offers no great advantage to the reader. Nevertheless, the book remains true to its concept, and gives you a glimpse into far-flung and wonderful parts of the world. It offers amusing and insightful snippets of information along the way, and caters for armchair travellers further by offering references to important novels, movies and even computer games, that are relevant to the featured places.

The photography plays the dominant role in this book. It's what gives it the wow factor. Yet I wonder about it. Most of the photographs have that professionally-shot ethereal golden glow about them that left me wondering cynically if the places shown really look like that to the naked eye. For example, I've driven The Great Ocean Road in Australia by car, just as described in the book, but it doesn't mention that the trip is made by huge numbers of people every year, meaning you are often surrounded by other tourists at the best vantage points. It is, then, a rather romantic take on travel, but one I still find compelling.

It's a nice big book, satisfyingly heavy, printed on glossy paper, hardbound, and wrapped in a decent dust jacket. The text is informal and informative, colourful and engaging, and the photography never less than fabulous. The index is a little weak. It would be more useful if it included every place mentioned in the text. As it is, it mentions just the major places. It is imperfect but still worth five stars, in my view. If you have ever imagined making an epic journey of your own, then this is the ideal starting point. It does not provide anything like enough information to actually make the journey, but it does provide plenty of inspiration. If you are, like most of us, an armchair traveller, then it provides plenty to fire the imagination.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Bringing back memories, and making new ones, 25 Nov 2011
By 
Joanne K. Pilsworth (Cambridge, UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Great Journeys: Travel the World's Most Spectacular Routes (Lonely Planet. Great Journeys) (Hardcover)
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
When I was a lot younger, my parents had a wonderful book of photos from around the world. I used to dream of those places, which seemed so far off and wonderful. Now as an adult, the world has shrunk, and visiting South America seems almost commonplace. But with this book, those same memories can be recreated. It is the sort of book where you can remember that, as small and accessible as the world is now, there are still places to see, and things to experience.

The whole idea of this book is that, using the Rough Guide format, you have a collection of places. This is a planner, but a very well considered one.

Perhaps I won't be able to make all those journeys. But, I can at least continue to dream.
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