Some recent feedback on Amazon

While we recommend and support good book shops as the obvious place to buy a Blue Guide, we also provide functionality from these pages to order copies for immediate delivery from Amazon.  One of the advantages of this for us is that we can see the excellent rankings and feedback from readers that our titles receive, in itself rewarding for our authors, editors and production team, who put an enormous amount of work into publishing “the best-researched, best presented guide books in the English language”. Here are some recent comments.

ALL COMMENTS

ITALY: FLORENCEROMESICILYVENICE

CROATIAFRANCEGREECEHUNGARYINDIAJORDANTRANSYLVANIATURKEYUKUSA

While we recommend and support good book shops as the obvious place to buy a Blue Guide, we also provide functionality from these pages to order copies for immediate delivery from Amazon.  One of the advantages of this for us is that we can see the excellent rankings and feedback from readers that our titles receive, in itself rewarding for our authors, editors and production team, who put an enormous amount of work into publishing “the best-researched, best presented guide books in the English language”. Here are some recent comments.

Blue Guide Rome

Very good guide to Rome

By Jmb
Format: Kindle ebook

First, I bought both the paperback and Kindle editions. I bought the paperback first, but it was so thick that it was impossible to carry it with me easily while sightseeing. I then bought the Kindle edition, and had no problems with faults or navigation like the earlier reviewer. One simply must go back to the table of contents (easily done) and then simply click on the site/area one wishes to explore. Like all Blue Guides, it is comprehensive, especially in its descriptions of the major churches of Rome. Some of the walks suggested were really good, and I am glad I followed the book’s advice. However, the author of the book does not hold back when he/she doesn’t think something is worth your time. In a couple of cases, I am glad that I went to a church even though the book said it held little merit. Still, the book made my four-day trip to Rome much more meaningful.

Blue Guide Rome

Well worth the weight to take on site

By Luce
Format: Paperback

So glad to see an updated edition of one of the finest guide books ever. I relied on its predecessor until so many changes occurred in what it is possible to see in Rome. This is the right book for serious visitors or residents in Rome who want depth of history and solid information. Great for pre-travel study or armchair reflection. This is not the book for people primarily in search of where to eat or where to stay. Best book to take on site for thorough explanation of what you see without the book weight of colored illustrations. A must for the scholarly tourist.

Blue Guide Trentino & The South Tyrol

Focus on Trento and South Tyrol

By cookie2
Format: Paperback

This was a very informative book. We spent a week in the area and had plenty to see. It was great to have a book that focused on the region we had chosen to visit. We found some real gems. We would have loved a little information on the local wines with some contact info. It was a great trip and this book had a lot to do with it!

Blue Guide Sicily

Covers the topic very thoroughly.

By Brooklyn Kid
Format: Paperback

I always find the ‘Blue Guides’ excellent. Very informative and easy to use.

Blue Guide Sicily

Great and Informative.

By Randy
Format: Paperback

I used an old edition of this years ago. Nice to have an updated copy! The book is very informative with lots of valuable history of the country and concise info on where and what to see.

Blue Guide Rome

Roma nascosta

By James A. Sullivan
Format: Paperback

This volume is like the older Blue Guides, deep in history if not as drenched with art objects or esoterica. One example, take the Aurelian Wall. Learn how the Romans loved it, they needed to keep out the barbarian hordes, naturally. The legions were busy skirmishing outside the city, so Roman citizens picked up their spades and did the building. A Trumpian moment, of course.

Blue Guide Venice and the Veneto

Blue Guide Must-Haves for Italy

By mikelb
Format: Paperback

Having known the more massive Blue Guides of the past (e.g., one for all of Northern Italy), I just recently discovered these smaller, separate regional guides and bought not only this one but also those for Sicily and Emilia-Romagna; a new one for Lombardy is due out shortly. They are not geared to mass travel or all the practicalities of travel to Italy’s main tourist centers; for that sort of guide you can resort to the “Big 5” (or more) guides. Rather, these Blue Guides are strongly geared to the voyager with strong orientation to the art, history and culture (and natural beauties too) of Italy, and an appetite to go a bit off-the-beaten tourist path, as that’s where some of the greatest treasures are to be found.

The value of these Blue Guides is to delve deeper than the “Big 5” guides don’t or can’t. The Blue Guides are wonderful for digging out smaller or undiscovered treasures that no traveler would be likely to find alone — a town or a church or museum or neighborhood, let’s say, that may be a real revelation. Many of those are places most tourists never get to — and may not even know about — but that is not to say they are minor in any way. They may in fact be priceless culturally.

For comparison, I consulted a very recent edition of one of the Big 5 — the Rick Steves 2017 Italy Guide, which is packed with useful information in its nearly 1200 pages, and very well presented; from a practical point of view, I think this may be the best of the Big guides today. But consider what it does not find space for and never even mentions: even close to Milan which does get coverage, no mention of Pavia, for example, with its famous monastery, or Bergamo, or Brescia, or Cremona; a bit further afield, no treatment at all of Piacenza, Modena, Parma, the major city of Bologna, Mantua, Ferrara. All unique, all with wonderful things to see and experience, and many of them with a more intimate atmosphere than the big tourist cities.

So, for some of us, who would consider places like those to be “essential,” the Blue Guides are essential too, not as substitutes but rather as supplements to the big, practical guides. You may still need Rick Steves to teach you some ins and outs of travel in Italy, but the Blue Guides will help you find an exquisite out-of-the-way chapel or Renaissance palace or miraculous piece of art or priceless jewel of a piazza you would otherwise miss — and that you can explore without hordes of other tourists around you. PS the Blue Guides are cleanly organized and clearly and elegantly researched and written — VERY comprehensive for the areas they cover. I love them!

Blue Guide Rome

Good book

By Dianne
Format: Paperback

Filled with great historical information for those visiting Rome.

Blue Guide Rome

The best!

By Lucia
Format: Paperback

Blue Guides are the very best guides in the world. I have been using them for over 60 years. If you take one to where ever you are going you will learn about everything there is to see and how to get to it. Gave this guide to my grandson who is off to Rome for a semester and he tells me it’s terrific.

Blue Guide Rome

Roman Holiday: The Gold Standard

By amachinist
Format: Kindle ebook

The ROME BLUE GUIDE became like a talisman for this reviewer. It provided detailed information about each sight including directions, history, photos and drawings. There were recommendations on where to eat and sleep as well as directions on how to get places. Detailed maps were included in the back. Options for public transport were also included. When in doubt about the order of popes or emperors, chronological lists were provided. A detailed index was so helpful. For the most fulfilling visit EVER to the Eternal City, don’t leave home without the Rome Blue Guide!

Blue Guide Rome

Tremendous guide

By mark browne
Format: Kindle ebook

Superb highly detailed guide to the history, art, culture and important sights in Rome.

Blue Guide Florence

Fully on Florence and More

By amachinist
Format: Paperback

As always, the Blue Guide on Florence holds up to the series’ high standards. The guide begins with a historical sketch including an in depth history of the Renaissance. Unsure of who is whom in the Medici family? This Florence Blue Guide provides a complete family tree! There are maps, diagrams, photos, a glossary and detailed index as well as suggestions for lodging and dining. Much welcome information is provided on each famous sight including special tips on ticket purchases. For example, there is both a telephone number and OFFICIAL on-line booking service for the Uffizi Gallery. The guide warns that other booking services should be avoided due to their extra fees. That sure is a helpful tip!

Blue Guide Sicily

Excellent travel resource

By Jerome Cavanaugh
Format: Kindle ebook

Great detail about all locations in Sicily, even the small towns and villages between primary tourist sites.

Blue Guide Sicily

For the traveller who wants to know EVERYTHING about Sicily

By Lyvia Kalisky
Format: Kindle ebook

The Blue Guide tradition of giving full information is capably upheld in the volume about Sicly. This is perfect when you need to know all about an archeological site. I bought this book for a short trip to the island and I found it perfect for learning all the details I crave. I recommend the e- book edition on a Kindle or tablet to avoid lugging around a weighty tome.

Blue Guide Sicily

Intelligent book for intelligent art lovers.

By Marina K.
Format: Kindle ebook

In depth explanation of art, architecture and history. Not afraid to be sophisticated. Well above the level of more popular guide books.

Blue Guide Rome

Just what is needed

By D. Blitz
Format: Kindle ebook

Just what is needed to figure out in depth what you want to see, wish I had this the first trip. Some people commented the kindle edition maps have an overprint which they do but I found that not an issue to read the plans etc, that was a worry of mine but it is a non issue.

Blue Guide Rome

Five stars

By Lisa
Format: Paperback

Love Blue Guide series, only guide books I will purchase.

Blue Guide Emilia Romagna

Compact and informative. Almost perfect.

By Christopher Chinnery
Format: Paperback

Bought for a short visit to Ferrara. It is a very handy size but much more informative than any English language guide I could find in the usual London shops. In the tradition of Blue Guides, it is well writen and informative with a strong emphasis on art and architecture. I like the lack of illustrations which only add to the weight, break up the text, and serve no useful purpose. I intend to use it to visit and re-visit other towns in Emilia Romagna. The maps are useful for arriving by train, then getting around on foot and cycle (the best way of seeing all the towns in this flat region).

Blue Guide Sicily

Good

By Reader
Format: Paperback

Detailed guidance on sites – very useful to supplement standard holiday trip guides.

Blue Guide Rome

Blue Guides are great!

By Kindle Customer
Format: Kindle ebook

Perfect for more in depth explorations. Damn near every thing you could ever see in Rome. Kindle version works well.

Blue Guide Rome

No need for guided tours when you have…

By R. Bryant
Format: Paperback

We took several guide books to Italy and this was by far our favorite. No need for guided tours when you have the Blue Guide. Also loved the city walks.

Blue Guide Emilia Romagna

Not the usual tourist attractions

By S. Mason
Format: Kindle ebook

Lots of great details. Little towns. I got it in the kindle edition so I can travel with it. Very useful.

Blue Guide Rome

Excellent reference book for my recent trip to Rome!

By Erin
Format: Paperback

Excellent reference book for my recent trip to Rome! Three of each had our own copy and we poured over it the entire trip. It includes historical facts on the may ancient sights to see in Rome as well as current dining and shopping recommendations. If you are planning a trip, I recommend grabbing the Blue Guide.

Blue Guide Sicily

Best of this type. Scope is rather narrow.

By anthony tedesco
Format: Paperback

Well researched. Really for those who enjoy art and architecture.

Blue Guide Florence

Excellent and deep review which will serve well any traveler

By Blue Sky
Format: Paperback

In the tradition of the Blue Guides, a superb compendium that provides a definitive guide to this magical city. Fully versed in Florence’s history, the logistics of touring and Italian culture. Excellent and deep review which will serve well any traveler.

Blue Guide Venice

The Best Venice Guide

By Bruce Coles
Format: Paperback

This is the best guide to Venice for anyone who wants to go beyond the crowds on St Marks Square and discover the great art and architecture. The Blue Guides are an excellent series and highly recommended.

Blue Guide Sicily

Excellent

By A. Malone
Format: Paperback

Excellent as this series usually is

Blue Guide Rome

Outstanding guide for the scholar in all of us!

By Samantha S. Birk
Format: Paperback

I have used Blue Guides for years and they are excellent! They provide a detailed historical information in a concise and brief format that is easy to read. Besides solid information and historical context, they also have excellent recommendations for dining, accommodations, and things to do.The diagrams are very useful help you ‘peel back’ the layers on what you are seeing. Compared to other guides, I find Blue guides to be far more comprehensive and easy to use.

Blue Guide Venice

Best guide

By Susie P.
Format: Kindle ebook

The best guide on Venice! Every recommendations checked out, and the descriptions of the sites (and sights) were excellent. Alta really knows the city.

Blue Guide Sicily

great book

By Amazon Customer
Format: Paperback

the best travel guide I’ve ever purchased. my planned trip is for art and architecture. this covers everything i need.

Blue Guide Rome

Best guide book out there for Rome

By a y pasha
Format: Paperback

Best guide book out there for Rome, tells you everything and more, on loan to 4th person now, all impressed.

Blue Guide Sicily

It is the best guide about history and archaeology

By Geoffrey Braswell
Format: Paperback

This is not a book about beaches, hotels, and restaurants. It is the best guide about history and archaeology. Worth the price if you are there to see and learn rather than tan like a pig skin.

Blue Guide Sicily

A superb guide

By RTF King
Format: Kindle ebook

I bought this guide the night before leaving for a one week’s holiday in Palermo. Only after I had downloaded it did I see that its only review gave it one star, and I almost certainly would not have bought it had I read the review. In contrast to the reviewer, I found it extremely easy to use, with very good linkages between the Table of Contents at the back and the discussion in the text, and also cross-referencing between different parts of the text. I normally download my Kindle books on to two devices. The first is the Kindle paperwhite tablet, which has the great advantage that it can be read in broad sunlight. This is especially useful for travel guides. They are also very easy to slip into a pocket. The drawback is that, as your reviewer noted, diagrams and photographs tend to be too small and cannot be enlarged. I also download them on to an Android tablet (I use a Google Nexus 7 inch tablet, but this has probably been rendered obsolete by now.) With the Android version one can enlarge diagrams and photos very easily, and view them in a landscape version if preferred.

As for the guide itself, it is well-written and so far as I could see, very comprehensive. There were one or two glitches about opening times–swings and roundabouts, we found some things unexpectedly open as well as others unexpectedly closed. But for the most part it proved accurate and very helpful.

Blue Guide Florence

These are great guides

By cubby43
Format: Paperback

im already a fan of the blue guide rome which has been a great source of knowledge for me during 2 trips to rome, i now have the florence guide and its equally superb, i love the way everything is described, the language is very thorough, these are very, very well written guides, theyre not big on glossy pictures but have a great deal of substance, much more than other guides, they do contain great floor plans of important churches etc, also they have maps of the cities within, a pleasing touch is diagrams and illustrations of famous buildings,, these are top quality guides and will always be my first port of call whenever i want to look something up

Blue Guide Rome

Five Stars

By Edwin Tomlinson
Format: Paperback

Book in excellent condition and up to date. A good buy.

Blue Guide Rome

Excellent, all you need when combined with one other “pragmatic” guide

By J. Mark
Format: Paperback

30 years ago, LP was the only guide book I used. I’d read that Blue Guides were “dry”, but the on-line previews seemed to have much more depth. Purchased 4, for each of the major cities in Italy which we visited.

Pros: They are terrific! Substantial detail in art, architecture, and history, intelligently written, and without any apparent “PC” bias, which negatively effects so many guidebooks. We had other folks surreptitiously listening in when I’d read out the descriptions as we went; much of the content of other guidebooks seems to be cribbed from the Blues. Far, far more detail than the other guidebooks we had with us; Blue would often have full entries on sites the others did not even (or barely) mentioned. Cannot say enough about the fantastic wealth of information & detail on nearly every site; often as much or more than the local tour guides! We never felt the need for a guide except in the 1 or 2 locations Blue actually recommended it!

Cons: A little light on practical “getting there” and “where to stay” type information, but I do like that the Blues assumption is that you’re not a timid, fearful tourist & can figure some basics out for yourself. They’re big & heavy, so perhaps I’m going with the downloadable next time, tho I love the ability to re-read them at home.

When combined with any other guidebook that excels in the practical traveler’s type info (such as LP, Rough, Fodor/Frommer, etc. – your preference), the Blue Guides provide the excellent, in-depth detail into at what you’re actually looking.

Pilgrim’s Rome: A Blue Guide Travel Monograph

Best in class

By Rich Leonardi
Format: Kindle ebook

Wonderful resource that provides brief, encyclopedic descriptions of the history and significance of nearly all the important sites of Christian Rome. The digital version is especially helpful, as one can flip through the Kindle version on an iPhone while walking the streets of Rome. I’ve read just about every similarly themed book on Rome I could find, and Blue Guides’ Pilgrims Rome is the best.

Blue Guide Venice

The best series of guide books are now better than ever

By Marco M
Format: Paperback

This is the first of the ‘rebooted’ Blue Guides I’ve bought. After going down the pretty looking, more populist route, Blue Guides are now back on track!

This is absolutely the best guide book to Venice available today. Let’s be honest here – one goes to Venice for her history, art and architecture, not for a week of lying on a beach at a resort. Blue Guides are unapologetically concerned with detailed information on every building and artwork you will see in a city. This guide is stuffed full of the most interesting information about everything imaginable relating to Venice, her art and her glorious past. Not just who painted what and who built that, but facinating titbits of trivia that brings the most beautiful city on Earth alive.

I have taken past editions of Blue Guides to Venice many times over the last 10 years, but this is the best so far. I thought I knew Venice inside out – my last trip there (for 8 days) revealed so much more that I didn’t know, all thanks to this brilliant guide. It really makes every other guide book on the market look like an article in a magazine.

Now I have to buy the rebooted Blue Guide to Rome for my upcoming trip back to the Eternal City!

Blue Guide Venice

Intelligent, reliable guide to those who want to find

By Richard Hyman
Format: Paperback

I cannot add substantially to the previous review of Joanie G. This much improved edition is almost twice the size of the previous which was inferior to the Blue Guides to London and Paris. To my knowledge it is the only thorough, intelligent, reliable guide to those who want to find and appreciate the overwhelming riches of this city. Plus advice on getting about efficiently. Recommend without reservation.

Blue Guide Trentino & The South Tyrol

Just the ticket

By Ziz
Format: Paperback

Handy, super-slim volume, packed with cultural, leisure and practical information on this part of Italy, which few publications cover. It gave me the details I needed to plan my holiday.

Blue Guide Emilia Romagna

Great book!

By Alexandra Neustadt
Format: Paperback

Great book! Covers all of the main cities in Emilia-Romagna–Parma, Modena, Bologna, Ferrara, Ravenna, and more. Pretty slim, so easy for traveling. I disagree with the other reviewers who gave it one star. Blue Guides have never been your typical tourist book. They include much more information and history about the sights. I use online research and other basic travel books to map out what I want to see. Then I take a Blue Guide with me so I can really learn about what I’m looking at. This Blue Guide is perfect for that.

Blue Guide Rome

The blue guide is One of the best books

By susanna majolino
Format: Paperback

The blue guide is One of the best books I’ve ever read About my mervellous city!! It is very well written, clear and with many details!!

Blue Guide Trentino & The South Tyrol

Meran/Merano is the place to go in the Tyrolean Alps

By Phedippides
Format: Paperback

Not always easy to find an English language guide that is useful. The South Tyrol includes many German speaking communities from its history as part of the Austrian Empire, and with Italian their country’s language, English is a poor third. So a good English language guide is important.

Blue Guide Umbria

Great book, I used it everywhere in Umbria

By Ilikebooks
Format: Kindle ebook

This was such a helpful book, truly detailed and has extremely useful descriptions and explanations of art and architecture. Traveled all over Umbria and took this book (on my kindle) everywhere and referred to it often. Buy it.

Pilgrim’s Rome: A Blue Guide Travel Monograph

Excellent

By K
Format: Paperback

Bought for upcoming first trip to Rome. Had it spiral bound at a local shop in order to use it on the go. Excellent size. maps and resources.

Blue Guide Rome

Superb

By cubby43
Format: Paperback

Excellent detailed guide, just the right amount of information for me, thorough but in no way boring, very well written, very nicely laid out and organised, much better than the more common big name guidebooks in my opinion, indispensable.

Blue Guide Rome

The ultimate DETAILED art and sights guide

By GerryR
Format: Paperback

The Blue Guide is all about DETAILS; about the many many sights you could see when in Rome. This is NOT about where to eat or stay or how to get around, but about what there is to see – who built it, when and why – who painted it or carved it and how it all fits into the big picture. Very authoritative and accurate.

Blue Guide Rome

The Gold Standard for guidebooks to Rome

By G.B. Piranesi
Format: Paperback

Just arrived today in my mailbox, and am thoroughly pleased. Layout, image quality and substantially updated information makes this the guidebook of reference for the Eternal City. As erudite as ever, but more user-friendly than previous editions, this is the one to get.

Blue Guide Sicily

Five Stars

By Robin Duran McBride
Format: Kindle ebook

Beautiful book full of information. Very readable and not boring.

Blue Guide Literary Companion Rome

Five Stars

By Audrey in Rome
Format: Kindle ebook

Wonderful book. I give them as gifts.

Pilgrim’s Rome: A Blue Guide Travel Monograph

Great Rome companion visiting Rome with a spiritual or religious purpose

By Smith
Format: Paperback

Very handy small format, almost pocket size and full of relevant information if you visit Rome with a spiritual or a religious historical purpose. Need to get used to the small maps but complemented by a tourist guide or a map, it worked very well for us. It is not a visual guide full of photos. Do not try cover the whole book unless you spend a few weeks in Rome. We will be back and indeed with this little great book in the bag.

Blue Guide Rome

Buy this guide for Rome travel

By Rich72
Format: Kindle ebook

I swear by the paperback editions of this guide, of which I have had two different one. Thrilled to see it available as a e-book, I purchased it immediately. This guide is the a thorough and comprehensive travel reference, with details other books simply ignore, figuring their users are real dilettantes. This is a serious book. We visit Rome for several months every year and always have a copy of it on hand. Now with the e-book, I can quickly access to Rome information with a couple of clicks. Will be great for walking around central Rome and all of its neighborhoods.

Blue Guide Venice

This is an excellent guide-book and includes very intelligent and descriptive articles

By Jilly Clarke
Format: Paperback

This is an excellent guide-book and includes very intelligent and descriptive articles. I bought it, together with the Pocket Rough Guide and they complimented perfectly.

Blue Guide Florence

Still the best and most thorough series of guide books around

By Amazon Customer
Format: Paperback

Still the best and most thorough series of guide books around. The Florence volume is a worthy member of the series.

Blue Guide Venice

Blue is the colour

By Intermeddle
Format: Paperback

The Blue Guides are still the best choice for visitors seriously interested in architecture and art. This one improves with every edition.

Pilgrim’s Rome: A Blue Guide Travel Monograph

Love it!

By Rev. J. Setelik Jr.
Format: Paperback

The Christian’s best friend in preparing to see Rome. Absolutely love it! Pocket size will be helpful.

Blue Guide Emilia Romagna

This was a real find!

By Gaby
Format: Kindle ebook

This was a real find! So accurate and really detailed! Recommend it wholeheartedly – the best guide around on this area.

Blue Guide Rome

Excellent guide to Rome

By Kurt Schweighauser
Format: Paperback

Excellent guide to Rome. I recently spent a week there and good this book everywhere. The last day I went to the Vatican and hired a tour guide. There were 25 people in the group, but with the help of the Blue Guide, I didn’t miss anything.

Blue Guide Venice

Wow!

By Tim Synge
Format: Paperback

This really is a fantastic guide. I was fortunate enough to be able to spend a week in Venice and many of my target destinations were based on the contents of this book. It is so incredibly informative and authoritative that it knocks the information in other guides, such as Baedeker and Lonely Planet, into the long grass. Of course, it is much more of a specialist publication with an unapologetic focus on art, architecture, sculpture and history, so you would expect it to do better than general purpose guides.

A couple of minor drawbacks: firstly the ordering of contents (once you get beyond the six districts of Venice) is a little opaque. The mini-maps for each major site are loosely indicative, but you do need a proper streetmap too. Secondly, it is a job to distinguish between one-star and five-star recommendations. Granted, it is not for this book to be too populist and rank its contents, but sometimes a real gem is almost lost in a small paragraph. I am not sure how this could be improved, but I often found myself cross-referencing against a “tourist” guide to decide how to prioritise the visits.

All in all, an excellent work. My first Blue Guide, but emphatically not my last.

Blue Guide Trentino & The South Tyrol

Nice and small and light enough to pack easily

By Brian M Biggs
Format: Paperback

A part of Italy the regular guide-books don’t really spend any time with. Nice and small and light enough to pack easily. Not to mention the history of the region, as well as side-trips to smaller towns. Loved the book, loved the trip.

Blue Guide Sicily

useful research book

By Kahanamoku “Kahanamoku”
Format: Paperback

One of the best books I have found for information on Sicily. If you want pretty pics go elsewhere.. this is really great on the information side. A much better format for me than DK.

Blue Guide Rome

Not for the superficial or uninitiated

By John D. Wynn
Format: Paperback

The Blue Guides are uniformly outstanding, but you have to know what you are getting: detailed descriptions of art and architecture with myriad discussions of dates and names and places and little background for the less initiated. This is not for the casual reader with a superficial knowledge of history and little interest in every duke, lord, prince and princeling, architect, architect’s assistant, architect’s mentor or mid-career vs later-career predilection. It’s a dense, heavy book to lug around, and the extra effort is amply rewarded – if this is the kind of detail that you like.

Blue Guide Venice

Essential guide for serious lovers of Venice

By Venetia
Format: Paperback

Not a book for those seeking superficial information or brief summaries of the major sights, but an excellent guide for anyone with a serious interest in Venice’s art and architecture and who wishes to acquire an intimate knowledge of the city. The maps are detailed and the walks included are also first rate, opening up hidden corners that might otherwise be overlooked. Highly recommended.

Blue Guide Venice

A great guide and interesting to read

By Margaret R. Snowdon
Format: Paperback

I searched so many guide books on Venice before I finally chose Blue Guide Venice – I found it helpful and most informative–written in a way that held the interest. I would recommend it to anyone.

Blue Guide Sicily

Simply the best and most complete travel companion

By Argyraspid
Format: Paperback

Simply the best! The editor of this Blue Guide, Sicily is Dr Michael Metcalfe, whom I had the immense pleasure to meet on several trips organized by Peter Sommer Travels.

This travel guide starts with a sketchy presentation of Sicily’s complex history. After that, each province of Sicily is being explained in detail, beginning each time with a short history of its own followed by the role its capital and other main cities played over the centuries, highlighting the main buildings and others, inclusive opening hours, entrance fees and handy phone numbers. Clear town plans and site maps help the prospective visitor to find his way among the Greco-Roman ruins and in the web of streets and alleys of these cities and towns. Key events or key personalities receive special attention in a framed window, and clear drawings and an occasional (black & white) picture definitely help to get a good idea of what to expect.

At the end of each chapter treating a separate province, there is a list of hotels and restaurants that deserve to be taken into consideration. That goes for all the provinces of Sicily: Palermo, Trapani, Agrigento, Caltanissetta, Enna, Ragusa, Syracuse, Catania and Messina.

The guide concludes with some practical information about opening hours, emergency numbers, means of communication and travel, and finally some details about accommodation and the island’s wide range of typical food and drink (wines). There also is a glossary of special terms, mostly pertaining to Greek temples and theatres, handily completed with drawings of the basic temple design, the classical orders of the temples, the design of ancient theatres, as well as the names and shapes of all kinds of pottery one can encounter. It also includes a list of Sicilian architects, painters and sculptors. At the very end of the guide we find a full road map of Sicily and a series of more detailed maps by province. In short, everything you need to know before heading for this beautiful island but also extremely useful while travelling around.

To my greatest pleasure and utmost satisfaction I did indeed visit this island in a two-weeks tour led by Dr Michael Metcalfe in person (for the tour details of Peter Sommer Travels, see Exploring Sicily), who truly brought Sicily and its rich history and culture to life!

Blue Guide Trentino & The South Tyrol

Great info but no practicalities

By Chilean Ale “Alejandro H”
Format: Paperback

Amazing historical and architectural tips and background, not much on practical tips. For example in lodging and restaurant, there is usually one recomendation for each place. Covers the region better than other guides that only tell you about Bolzano, Castelorotto and Alpe d’Siusi; this guide properly covers the whole region named in the cover, and although I haven’t been there, its description use enough adjectives to help you anticipate and decide.

Blue Guide Concise Italy

Helped me a lot in Tuscany and Umbria

By Alexander
Format: Kindle ebook

I missed illustrations, but the guide is terrific and helped me a lot in Tuscany and Umbria.

Blue Guide Umbria

Five Stars

By Steve Hallgrimson
Format: Kindle ebook

Very informative and easy to read.

Blue Guide Rome

Scholarly and readable: an indispensable guide to Rome

By Anne Redmon
Format: Paperback

We bought the Blue Guide to Rome for our second visit to the city in six months: this was because the Michelin Guide we had used before gave us only cursory information on the sites we had visited then. Rome was not, of course, built in a day and any of its major treasures certainly take at least half a day to see adequately. The Blue Guide is scholarly and perhaps too heavy-weight for quick tourism but if you have been bitten by the Roman bug and really want to delve then this is for you. It is written in clear language and the index makes it easy for you to dive in at any level you want. Now I have come home I want to pick it up again and pore over it, revisiting in my mind the places that we saw. We were particularly interested in San Clemente. My husband visited it alone in December because I had a tummy bug at the time and he had only the Michelin for company. This time we went together and spent an entire morning there with the Blue Guide taking us all the way from the Temple of Mithras on the lowest level right up to the stunning mosaics in the church itself. We could hardly tear ourselves away.

Pilgrim’s Rome: A Blue Guide Travel Monograph

LOVE

By MAS
Format: Kindle ebook

Blue Guides are the best of the best. I’m not Catholic but I am Christian and wanted a book that gave fantastic Biblical history of Rome. This book is unbiased, detailed, and very easy to read and enjoy. Next purchase Blue Guide Venice and Rome.

The Venice Lido: A Blue Guide Travel Monograph

A review of The Venice Lido: A Blue Guide Travel Monograph by Robin Saikia

By Mr. R. Clark
Format: Kindle ebook

Among my large collection of travel literature, I will treasure this beautifully-crafted book by Robin Saikia, for it is that rare thing – a work that, even in the depths of winter, can transport the reader to the destination of choice, in this case the Venice Lido. It is so much more than just a guide. A friendly, knowledgeable travelling companion would describe it more accurately. I have not been to Venice for many years, but this learned and witty book has ensured that it will not be long before I return. Thank you Robin Saikia. Richard Clark – Author The Greek Islands – A Notebook; Crete – A Notebook

Blue Guide Sicily

Amazing Sicilian Guide

By Jill Tata
Format: Paperback

Blue Guide Sicily is an exciting and extraordinary travel guide. Having visited with a large tour group I want to return solo. This book goes into depth and sums up the islands charm. It’s an excellent read in preparation for, or while on a trip to Sicily. Part guidebook, part historical and it is one of the most interesting books I’ve read. I’d say it’s the definitive work on Sicily! A great picture of Sicily and its hideouts through the centuries – very insightful.

Pilgrim’s Rome: A Blue Guide Travel Monograph

A pocket-sized guide, which packs quite a punch…

By David Lown
Format: Paperback

For centuries Rome has been a magnet for pilgrims. They first arrived by foot or on horseback; they now arrive, more often than not, by train or aeroplane. Their means of transport might have changed, but their reasons for travelling hasn’t. As a place of pilgrimage, Rome is second only to Jerusalem in terms of importance. It was the site of some of the first Christian communities. It is the burial place of countless saints and martyrs. It is home to more than 900 churches and is, of course, the residence of the Bishop of Rome, also known as the Vicar of Christ and the Pope, which we learn are just a few of the Holy Father’s many titles. The first two chapters are devoted to Peter and Paul (Rome’s patron saints) and the sites associated with them. The author then moves on to the seven Patriarchal basilicas and the Catacombs. Much of the rest of the book is devoted to churches in general. There will always be quibbles in a book of this size over why some churches were selected, while others were omitted (why, for instance, Sant’Alfonso and not Santa Maria della Pace?), but that is inevitable. The book ends with a series of short entries on subjects such as Papal Indulgences and Stational Churches, which I found particularly interesting.

In writing a guidebook for Christian travellers to Rome, Ms Barber has become part of a long and venerable tradition, which dates back to the fourth century. However, unlike many of her predecessors, this author wears her knowledge lightly and is not above enlivening the text with the occasional anecdote. Believers and non-believers, first time visitors and veterans, all should slip this book into their pockets the next time they visit the Eternal City.