Africa Guide Book?

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Jan 25th, 2006, 02:01 PM
  #1
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Africa Guide Book?

I'm just getting started on planning a trip to Africa (probably Tanzania and some beach stay at the end) and am looking for a good guide book so that I can figure out which parks I want to visit and which camps / lodges I want to stay at on a safari. Any suggestions?
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Jan 25th, 2006, 02:05 PM
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Hello Birdie,

I'd recommend the Bradt guidebooks -- they have the best coverage of Africa's wildlife areas. The Tanzania guide is due to be updated this year (in May 2006). They also have guides to Botswana, Kenya, Zambia, and Namibia.

The only hole in their line-up is South Africa -- for SA I'd recommend the Footprint Handbook to South Africa. Footprint is written for adults who expect some comfort when they travel, as opposed to Lonely Planet and Rough Guides which are aimed more at backpackers.

Cheers,
Julian
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Jan 25th, 2006, 02:31 PM
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I second Julian's suggestion of the Bradt guides. I have the Kenya, Tanzania, and Uganda ones and they are excellent. The camp/lodge listings in the Tanzania guide are quite outdated though so you might want to wait for the new edition. Or just come here for the most up to date accomodation reviews
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Jan 25th, 2006, 04:46 PM
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Birdie:

You do not need a guide book. Just post an inquiry with a headline like "Where to go on Tanzania Safari?" and you will receive lots of good advice.

We just booked a trip to Kenya in August based soley on asking on this message board where was the best place to see animals in Africa in August.

The "Fodorites" as they call themselves are truly amazing. If you are in the U.S. I also suggest you call Sandi at African Serendipity. She is in New York and was very helpful. We did not book with her but solely for a technical reason.

Good luck,

Kevin
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Jan 25th, 2006, 04:50 PM
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Hello,

Personally, I think a guidebook is very helpful for the early stages of trip planning -- choosing which parks you might want to visit and getting some basic information on the various accommodation options. This forum is great too -- no reason not to use them both!

Cheers,
Julian
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Jan 26th, 2006, 02:34 AM
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The Lonely Planet, or the Rough Guide - no contest - plenty of background info about the countries as well as useful tourist stuff.
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Jan 26th, 2006, 06:27 AM
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Hi Birdie79,

I like Lonely Planet, Rough and Bradt and I take the one with the freshest edition with me when I travel. For Kenya Iíve got the LP from 2003, Rough from 2002 and Bradt from 2004 Ė and for Tanzania Iíve got the LP from 2005. I find LP Kenya Ė even if itís a bit outdated - better for information about accommodation than LP Tanzania. Iím waiting for a new edition of LP Kenya this year. I donít know when there will be a new edition of Rough Kenya Ė Iíd say Rough is the most complete guide.

Apart from Julian with Bradt Tanzania 2006 (asante sana), does anyone know anything about coming editions?

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Jan 26th, 2006, 06:36 AM
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My advice is to check out all the Africa guide books your library has. Look them over, and then decide which one or ones you'll use most in your planning, and want to take with you, and buy those.

Personally, I don't like the Brandt guides nearly as well as the Footprint guides, because of the style of travel I do. A good look at several different books will not only help you get ideas about your trip, it will also show you which books emphasize things that are the most relevant to your plans.
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Jan 26th, 2006, 06:48 AM
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The Bradt guides are, without question, without peer, and are much better than anything published by Fodors, Frommers and even Lonely Planet.

Another interestin book is Mark Notling's Africa's Best Wildlife Destinations (or something like that).
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Jan 26th, 2006, 07:08 AM
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fodors along with premier tours produced a nice little book, which is helpful.
I would agree with the last poster though that Noltings guide is well researched and most worthy in the planning phase of your trip. Unlike other books, they actually send people to Africa, so i trust what they have written.
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Jan 26th, 2006, 11:11 AM
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Iíve been hanging around here for almost a year without having a look to see if Fodorís have a Kenya guide. Now Iíve seen that they have a Kenya and Tanzania guide from 2002. Iíve never seen a Fodorís guide in real life.

I got Noltingís Africaís Top Wildlife Countries for Christmas. Some posts here made me write a letter to Santa Claus. Itís an excellent overview of the wildlife reserves in eastern and southern Africa, but gives almost no information at all about the countries and for accommodation itís very incomplete Ė of course anything else would make the book extremely heavy - and it must be combined with a Tanzania guide (if thatís the country you decide to visit) and good advice from this forum.


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