Lonely Planet has captured the backpacks of so many travellers over the last 30 years. In spite of limited bag weight I managed to take my Europe and Great Britain tomes on my OE. So it is interesting to see what they offer for visitors to our own shores.
This guide is part of the Best Of series so does not claim to cover everything. It gives good general information, clear suggestions for short stay holidays and covers the better-known tourist spots for the busy tourist.
The book is a manageable size with 325 pages, basic maps and good information on cities, food, accommodation, transport and entertainment. There are suggestions for websites to find fuller and more recent information. This is essential as New Zealand is a small country with limited transport options. Recent events in the South Island mean the travel times differ while the Kaikoura coast road is out. Likewise, The Tranz Alpine is not running following major fire damage to the bridges. This is always going to be a problem with travel guides in print form and although the publication date is November 2016, some information is outdated.
I would like to have seen a little more information on driving conditions and times. In light of the tragic accidents on our narrow roads it would seem sensible to include better information for those self driving on their holiday.
This modest guide gives a basic overview for the short stay traveller. The photos are enticing, the maps clear and the information provides a good entry point for further research.
Reviewed by Kathy Watson
Best of New Zealand
Published by Lonely Planet