Customer Review

13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars It's no secret. This is a little gem., 21 Nov 2002
This review is from: City Secrets: London (Turtleback)
LONDON, of the City Secrets series of travel guides, is a little gem that will easily fit into a pocket of your travel vest as you set out to explore what is arguably the world's greatest city.
This volume, small in size but rich in information, divides Britain's capital into thirteen areas according to a scheme that escapes me. However, no matter. Each area, e.g. Hyde Park & Chelsea, The City, Oxford Street & Mayfair, or The East End & Beyond, is preceded by a map on which is marked each point of interest included in that section. And what you will find are both famous and little-known museums, historic buildings, art galleries, libraries, shops, pubs, churches, eateries, parks, squares, streets, memorials, and gardens. Each includes, at least, an address or location and the name of the nearest Underground or rail station. If relevant, there's also a phone number and/or the date the place was founded or constructed. The core of each listing is a short descriptive commentary by a contributing journalist, architect, philosopher, playwright, professor, author, historian, poet, curator, or some other professional of similar dignity. At the end of the book are an Index of Recommended Reading and an Index of Contributors. What you won't find are budget hotels, American fast-food franchises, newsagents, or 24-hour chemists (pharmacies) reviewed by backpacking college students, traveling salesmen, lorry drivers, or tourists from the Midwest. This is a genteel publication.
LONDON is a delightful and uncommonly intelligent sightseeing resource for those of us who've been to the city often enough to have exhausted the usual tourist activities and are left with making silly faces at the Buckingham Palace guard to try and crack his reserve. And besides the information that might be considered usual for each of the listings, the contributors also provide tidbits of arcane information that the casual visitor would likely not know or learn...
LONDON in hand, I'm ready to return to my favorite city - now.
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