Fodor's Guidebook Question

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Apr 26th, 2006, 01:13 PM
  #1
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Fodor's Guidebook Question

What is the difference between Fodor's "Gold Guides" and the "Exploring" series? I am helping to organize a meeting in Stuttgart, Germany for 2007, and would like to know the best guidebook that I can refer other people to for ideas---such as sights they can visit within an hour or so by train (or car) from Stuttgart. Of course I can gather information here, and on the internet, but I'd like a basic guidebook to fall back on. The "gold" guidebook is available in bookstores, but not the "Exporing" series, so I can't actually compare the two myself. Does anyone have an idea whether one or the other would be better for coverage of southern Germany? Thank you.
enzian is offline  
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Apr 26th, 2006, 01:36 PM
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There are generally three types of guide books.

The first type has lots of pictures and only a brief overview of sites and destinations. These are intended to help folks decide where they want to go.

The second type has fewer pictures and much more detailed information. These are intended to help you find hotels and research opening and closing times of attractions, etc. These guidebooks are best purchased only after you have a pretty good idea of what areas you will be visiting.

The third type is intended to be taken with you when you travel. These are always small with a moderate number of very small pictures and a summary of addresses, opening times, etc.

Like many travel publishers, Fodors attempts to fill all three niches. The Exploring series fills the first, and the Gold Guides fill the second.

Since you have a specific destination predetermined, the Gold Guide would provide a greater amount of information.
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Apr 26th, 2006, 01:55 PM
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Thank you, that helps. I thought from the title that the "Exploring" series might cover more "off the beaten path" sights, but that appears to be incorrect.

I should add that I and the people attending this meeting once lived in Germany (as university students), so we are not first-time visitors. I would just like to be able to help people see their options for daytime activities during the meeting, as well as post-meeting excursions to other areas further from Stuttgart.

I would appreciate any personal recommendations for "must-do's" in the area as well. So far I've gathered information on a daytrip to Heidelberg, and need to look into factory tours of the Mercedes and Porsche plants. And then there's wine tasting. But I'd like suggestions for more. . .
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Jul 3rd, 2006, 06:21 AM
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You could go to the Birkenkopf (aka Rubble Hill). I think it's the coolest place but lots of people don't even know it's there. It's on the W/SW side of the city at the corner of Rotenwaldstrasse and Geisseichstrasse. It has a parking lot and I believe there's a bus stop near the entrance to the path as well.

During cleanup from WWII bombings, people took the rubble from their bombed buildings and put them on top of this hill which increased it from 471m to 511m. Some of the pieces are ornate and make great photos. All Nazi symbols have been chiseled out I was told. A cross was added to remember those who died during the war.

It's a bit of a climb but there are benches along the way and at the top. You get a great view of the city and some great photos. Lots of people go up there for a picnic.
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