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Iran (Bradt Travel Guides) Paperback – 20 Sep 2009

3.9 out of 5 stars 7 customer reviews

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Paperback, 20 Sep 2009
£34.61 £18.85

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Product details

  • Paperback: 272 pages
  • Publisher: Bradt Travel Guides; 3 edition (15 Sept. 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1841622893
  • ISBN-13: 978-1841622897
  • Product Dimensions: 21.3 x 13.2 x 1.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 698,139 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

Product Description

Review

'Excellent on history and culture' TNT Magazine

About the Author

The first and second editions of this guidebook were written by Patricia Baker PhD, an independent lecturer and researcher specialising in Islamic art, who died in August 2008. This edition is updated by her close friend and colleague, Hilary Smith MPhil, a guide and lecturer who first visited Iran in 1976 and has been returning regularly ever since.


Customer Reviews

3.9 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
I went to Iran in Summer 2008 and took this book and the Lonely Planet equivalent. No match - this book was totally outclassed and I stopped referring to it after a couple of days.

In particular, the book is shot through with an oddly paranoid take on Iran, which is understandable in the global context but in terms of day to day travelling was no help. It earned the nickname "The Book of Doom" due to the author's continued fretting on issues the LP said were no problem, and the LP was invariably right.

Two stars because it does have information and hey, the cover is cool.
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Format: Paperback
The intrepid visitor to Iran is in for a deeply rewarding experience. This enormous, varied and little-visited country is full of wonders and surprises; it's very safe for travellers and in many ways easier for the visitor than most other destinations in the region. Follow a few simple rules, and you can't go wrong.

The choice of guide books, however, is limited at the time of writing to just two: Lonely Planet and Bradt. Of the two, the LP guide is definitely the most useful with the greatest amount of accurate information about where to stay, how to get from A to B and other practicalities high on the priority list for the traveller. It's important to have a guide book for Iran because internet access is difficult and slow, cellphone networks congested and almost impossible to access in the daytime (especially in Tehran) and English not widely understood.

The Bradt guide, however, is not without value. It's written by Patricia Baker, an academic with an interest in Islamic art and costume, and the weight of content reflects these specialist cultural interests at the expense of travel practicalities.

The first 66 pages are devoted to Iranian history, politics and religion and to basic practicalities like best time to visit, visas, health issues and tour operators. The author tends to discourage independent travel to Iran and recommends an organised tour, as (according to her) Iranian officialdom is more comfortable with groups who can be managed and controlled more easily. I have to say I found travelling independently around Iran quite easy, especially with a positive attitude and the helpful and invariably accurate advice in the LP guide, so do not agree with Ms. Baker on this issue.
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Format: Paperback
This is an excellent travel companion for cultural and historical information on Iran, as well as for tips on out-of-the-beaten-track experiences for the more adventurous and intellectually curious traveler. The book is nicely bound and will take the beatings of travel, and it is small enough to fit in most pockets. Do NOT expect it to provide the best info on where to sleep and eat. Bradt guides are not meant for that. I would recommend buying the LP guide for that purpose and take both books along on your trip. The two are really conceived for different and complementary purposes.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Yes! Buy this. Even if you don't go to Iran. It's really interesting. I used to think that Iran was near Belgium, but it's not. It's much warmer, and not at all boring like Belgium. But I am warning you that if you read this book, you really will want to go. To Iran, I mean. Not Belgium, obviously. Iran apparently has lovely people, fabulous scenery, incredible history, fantastic architecture, huge amounts of culture, and the best food. Belgium - what can I say? Except that you need to get Patricia Baker to write a book about you...
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