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3.7 out of 5 stars
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3.7 out of 5 stars
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on 15 February 2014
We always travel to Egypt using these guides. It's a great read while you are there as well as being the independent traveller's vital companion. Good photos and maps plus prioritisation. There are very few tourists at the moment, which is a great pity as the Egyptians tend to be a lot friendlier and warmly human than Western Europeans. Egyptians wanted to take our photos with them.
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on 21 March 2013
I know Lonely Planet have been "dumbed down" somewhat since their heyday in the 1990s, but bought this as it was (at the time) the only post-revolution edition available. It was a waste of time and money!

The style of writing is now beyond parody - the "trendy vicar down with the kids" style which used to be just grating and annoying has become ridiculous.

The content is remarkably scant in terms of facts, historical/cultural/social/political context, and just plain information. One thing which is noticeable is that this guide is markedly thinner physically than its competitors such as Rough Guide - that should have warned me, but it's the quality of the content that is so dire.

My travelling companion had an out-of-date Rough Guide with him - despite the massive changes that have happened in Egypt in the last few years, his guide was far, far more useful. In fact the LP only came out of my bag to have a laugh at the risibly bad entries we would then compare with the information in his RG.

When there was concrete information and you could bring yourself ignore the ludicrous and sometimes plain illiterate style, the facts set out were just cursory and nothing like as helpful or comprehensive as the RG.

Even the maps aren't as good as they used to be - I'd never have believed it was possible to "dumb down" a map... but oh yes it is!

If all you ever go travelling for is to find the 'trendy bars' and pretend to hang out with locals (in a manner which actually bears no relationship with the cultural realities of the country you find yourself in), then perhaps this bizarre tome might just about be for you... But if you're an independent traveller interested in exploring a country off your own bat, seeing interesting places and learning a little about the place, this LP will at best disappoint but cause you some unintentional laughter - at worst it will really, really annoy you.

All in all, by some margin the worst guide book that I've ever come across intended for independent travellers!
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on 4 January 2013
I like lonely planet guides and this content was to the usual high standard. However this was my first purchase of a LP guide in electronic format and I was very disappointed. It was very hard to find one's way around the e version. Although better on an i pad than a kindle, the search facility is very poor. Even something simple like hotels in luxor is impossible. I cannot understand why the usual paper index is not replicated. the content section at the front is very high level. On the kindle the maps, a key useful feature, are almost unreadable. Obviously there are no pictures on the kindle and the whole presentation is very unappealing. This is better on an ipad, but none of the maps have any interactive features and when expanded to make them readable, they become grainy. The links to the internet seem very slow. The book needs a complete redesign to make it useable as an e guide. Surely this is not difficult.
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on 23 January 2013
We did a fortnight in Egypt - Luxor, Giza and then Luxor again, mixing relaxing at hotels with getting out and seeing the sights.
This was good in explaining the areas and what's there, although two of the three hotels we stayed at were not included on the map. The first we stayed at in Luxor (the Steigenberger) was not included, despite being about 50 yards away from the Sonesta, which was on the edge of the map. Why they cut the Luxor map off half way through the tourist quarter is beyond me.
Likewise in Giza, our hotel (the Grand Pyramids) was just off the map, and being the closest 5* hotel to Egypt's no 1 tourist attraction I would have expected it to be on the map.

It comes with the usual descriptions of what to do and see, although in truth many are so exhausting in detail it can be daunting knowing what to read or where to start. There will be four pages or more on a temple that you can wander through in five minutes, and while it is nice having the detailed history of every brick it can detract from the experience and make you think attractions are bigger than they are, leaving you somewhat disappointed when you get there.
Also, it would have been nice to have a guide detailing how much you should pay for popular trips and how trustworthy the locals are. In Luxor, we did a guided trip of the Valley of the Kings for £70 for both of us, using a tour agency, then did Banana Island with a man off the street called Mustafa who did it for £30 inc a camel ride and lunch - through a tour agency it would have been £50 exc lunch. It would have been nice to have some guidance about the sort of trip packages there are there (all the agencies offer the same things) and what pirce you should pay (they will probably inflate by around 40%), and also advice on how reputable locals are at offering tours - I was dubious, and thus used Mustafa for one before committing to others, but he did a great job for a low price, was very friendly, and it was a nice experience seeing it with local people rather than tour guides.

The coverage of Cairo is extensive and can be a little difficult to navigate through the book with so much in there. We stayed in Giza and did one day seeing the Pyramids and also the pyramid at Sakara - we weren't planning to but were told the taxi driver would take us to both and wait around for £20 for the day. I'm sure there were other nearby attractions that are not too popular we could have seen, but were not informed as to do so.
We also did a day seeing Saladin's Citedal and the Coptic Quarter after visiting the museum, which was nice, though again it would have been nice to have a description of how much to pay for such tours (again, all the agencies do the same) so as to be empowered when negotiating.

Some bits are also out of date, and it doesn't detail how touchy Egyptians are about you taking photos - no cameras in the Valley of the Kings, in the tombs, in the Cairo Museum, etc, and they have hawk-eyed boys about spotting if you take a picture and encouraging an armed guard to go over to you an elicit a bribe if you do get caught.
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on 29 August 2012
The quality of paper in the "New-look" book is shocking! I feel cheated!

I have been buying lonely planet guides for over a decade. They are heavy and can be a burden, but the reason I continue to buy them as opposed to a kindle version, or phone download is for the quality of colour photos and maps within. It feels like something special and something I treasure long after my return. This new version looks cheap - where are the beautiful photo quality pictures and maps? If I spill something on one of these photos or maps it won't wipe off as in previous versions where the paper was thicker, glossier and more forgiving of travel accidents.

On the positive side, the layout is improved - I like the blue and feel that this blue - black combination does make it easier to read. However, the colour maps and pictures within look like I printed it out on a colour printer myself! Disappointing.

Will be returning this copy for the earlier version.
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on 6 March 2014
A very useful book that I took with me to Jordan. Some useful history including that of the amazing Petra.
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on 9 November 2013
A great guide book even if your going on a package holiday to read about the Egyptian culture and history
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on 10 December 2014
Handy guide to Egypt, it really helped us a great deal.
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on 27 October 2015
GREAT!!! It helped me a lot!
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on 22 December 2013
This product arrived promptly and was accurately described on the website. It was a present for someone so cannot review the contents but it is just what I was looking for.
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