Being as I have at least 25 different Eyewitness Guides, I have to say that the Paris edition faced stiff competition. But, this is how highly I think of it: I have lived in Paris for 5 years, and still consult this guide on a regular basis. The pictures are gorgeous, the information is up-to-date, and the portrayal of Paris comes across as so very real. Even if you don't have the cash to come to Paris, you do have the cash to buy this book, and the book is almost better than being in Paris because you get to see pictures of all of the most important things without actually having to deal with the tourists (no offense). My only word of caution is that this should be used as a secondary source of information for a first-time tourist, not a primary source, because the maps are not very good and the practical information section is not really that practical. Overall, though, I highly recommend it.
My wife and I now have over 15 Eyewitness Travel Guides...obviously we like them. There are several reasons, and the Paris guide points these out quite well:
- the restaurant recommendations are spot on, at least for our taste. I have been to Paris more than 20 times, 5 or so for pleasure, the rest of business. I stay in different areas. I always pick a restaurant close to my hotel from this guide, and it never fails to meet my expectations (which were well set from the book)
- the maps and summaries of the attractions help you make the most efficient usage of your time. True, when on business, I do take a couple of hours to tour, but I cannot linger at the Louvre as I do when I am there for vacation. These guides help me map out what I want to see, where it might be in the museum, and even suggest when to go
- I try to go see Jazz and Classical performances while in Paris. I would not have had a great Jazz evening at the Bilboquet if not for finding it in this guide.
- What can I say, I am a convicted map-a-holic (which really irritates my wife, until we turn the corner and there we are!). I don't carry extra maps, I just carry the guide book, and use it's street maps and Metro maps to get around.
The final piece I like on these books are their simplicity. I had the rare pleasure to take my mother to Paris. Mom is not one for maps, but I let her peruse the Eyewitness Book, and she found some things that she wanted to see and where she wanted to eat (she loves mussels, and found several recommended restaurants in the guide book) and found places she didn't want me to take her (the Catacombs, but my son and I took her anyway).
Though many people do not enjoy these guides because they have too many pictures, I find that the pictures help me navigate the city, the attractions and the restaurants. Sometimes when in Paris I just wander and stop somewhere for a glass of wine...then I look in the guide to see where I've wandered to and if there is anything close, like a jazz club that I should go sample.
Travel Guides dieses Verlages sind für mich schon immer eine Bereicherung für die Vorbereitung einer Reise gewesen. Auch vor Ort bieten sie anschauliche Beschreibungen, die Teilkarten lassen sich schnell umsetzen und die Hinweise sind helfen weiter!