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Africa (Lonely Planet Multi Country Guides) Paperback – 1 Jun 2007
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Who We AreAt Lonely Planet, we see our job as inspiring and enabling travelers to connect with the world for their own benefit and for the benefit of the world at large. What We Do- We offer travelers the world's richest travel advice, informed by the collective wisdom of over 350 Lonely Planet authors living in 37 countries and fluent in 70 languages.- We are relentless in finding the special, the unique and the different for travellers wherever they are.-We update our guidebooks by visiting thousands of places in person to get the details right and tell it as it is.- We always offer the trusted filter for those who are curious, open minded and independent.- We challenge our growing community of travelers; leading debate and discussion about travel and the world.- We tell it like it is without fear or favor in service of the travelers; not clouded by any other motive. What We BelieveWe believe that travel leads to a deeper cultural understanding and compassion and therefore a better world. ...the book was once designed purely for travelers on a shoestring, but the new edition also has listings for more sophisticated or affluent travelers who prefer not to go the do-it-yourself hostel route.' --USA Today
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Bear in mind that although it was supposedly published in 2004, from when the information was actually collected it is now 3 or 4 years out of date. Whole countries have had coups, revolutions and free elections in that time (for example Congo, which gets very little space in this book because in 2002 it was pretty dangerous).
If you want to find the hip and happening backpacker ghettoes then this book will certainly help you. You will find a large number of other hip backpackers toting the same book around, in fact you might as well go on an overland truck together because you'll be going to all the same places.
In a nutshell there are two problems with this book: 1. Africa is too big and diverse a place to be condensed into one book, and too difficult to keep such a weighty tome up to date. 2. the usual LP problem of if you follow their advice, you are just travelling from one backpacker hangout to the next, and missing out on much of what makes Africa so fantastic.
This will give you the very basics: how to get to/from a country, lots of details on crossing borders overland, transport options, basic accomodation and eating solutions. Think of it as a normal Lonely Planet guide but covering only the highlights, with far fewer maps (only capitals) and much less history and background.
It's not perfect, of course, but if you're covering large swathes of the continent than it's by far your best option. Some people may be better off with a Southern/East Africa guide (from LP or others), but if your backpack can't accomodate multiple guidebooks, this is the one for you.
have fun on the trip.
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