Old May 24th, 2002, 11:00 AM
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I will be traveling Spain, France and Italy in a month. I keep reading about GREEN MICHILIN GUIDE BOOKS. Specifically, what are they? If I wanted to travel by auto in France as an example, would I buy a Green Guide? What do they cost? Where do I buy them? Are they worth having? Help, please!
Old May 24th, 2002, 11:08 AM
J T Kirk
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The Michelin guide books are an institution in Europe. The Red ones cover hotels and restaurants. The Green ones cover the history of the area, the sites to see, etc. To me, they are a little too densely packed with info. Plues they're a little too serious. I guess if you really want to learn about the area and want to wade through something that reads like a textbook, this is the series of books. I prefer a tad more irreverence in my guidebooks.
Old May 24th, 2002, 11:19 AM
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I like them. They are not AS serious as the Blue Guide Books (not from Michelin), but a lot more serious than many of the other guidebook. They are oblong and fairly easy to carry, and since they do not contain a colored photos or any lavish illustrations, there's not a lot of wasted weight. they do, however, have maps. They do not have hotel and restaurant info. That's what the red Michelins are for. The main part of a Michelin green guide is ogaanized alphabetically by place name. That method of organization has both advantages and disadvantages.
Old May 24th, 2002, 11:31 AM
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To JT Kirk: You want facts or fantansy?

Michelin has Green Guides for each region of France and several regions of Spain and Italy. They are available at the large US bookstores. They cost about $20 and worth more than their weight in gold.

I've travelled Europe extensively with the Michelin Guides. Their ranking system for sights (***: worth the trip, **: worth a detour, and *: interesting) is invaluable. Their city maps have military accuracy. In addition to the location of the sights, they propose walks, show where the parkings are, etc.

If you're going to travel by car, also get the Michelin road maps, which are easy to find in Europe. These maps are cross-refenced with the city maps shown in the Green Guide for easy navigation in and out of city centers.
Old May 24th, 2002, 11:39 AM
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I used them for the first time on a return trip to Venice and a first-time trip to Rome, and they are wonderful as long as you are interested in art, architecture, and historical information. They have very good maps, but as said are not useful for restaurants, or even other practical information like the days places are open or closed or general travel hints on subjects like transportation, tipping etc.

Now I take the Michelin Green with me, print out or photocopy the other info I want from other books or websites on just a few sheets.

Any decent bookstore has them or will order them, or you can get them at
Old May 24th, 2002, 11:46 AM
wes fowler
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The newer editions of the Michelin Green Guides do indeed have color photographs and do indicate opening and closing times of attractions as well as admission costs.

If you're planning on traveling by auto, these guides are excellent since entries in the guides are referenced to Michelin's superb maps.

Michelin offers Green guides for France, Italy and Spain as well as regional guides within those countries.
(There are 14 Green Guides for regions in France, plus a guide for Paris, as an example.)

They are available from any of the online booksellers as well as chain bookstores and do retail for about $20.00 each. You'll also find them in your local library, as well.
Old May 24th, 2002, 11:50 AM
wes fowler
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Just noticed that none of the previous posters, self included, mentioned that the Green Guides also offer suggested driving itineraries in great detail with distances and approximate drive times indicated.
Old May 24th, 2002, 11:51 AM
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I used a green guide and rick steves guide (and a fodors that I didn't take with me except for some ripped out pages, to difficult to find information in quickly and too heavy).

Steves had lots of practical info. But I really enjoyed reading the historical and other informational background the green guide gave too. Made the places more interesting. I think their rating system is helpful too. The green guides because they are what they are have a longer shelf life too. You can easily use one that's a few years old. With any other guide book I would be more likely to want the latest version.
Old May 24th, 2002, 11:59 AM
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I agree that the Green Guides include
information on hours of admission, what I should have said is that, at least for Venice and Rome, there was very little of that information in the book that was actually current and correct.
Italian cultural institutions are notorious for changing their hours, or not abiiding by them, so I would use a more up-to-date and local source on hours of admission to avoid disappointment.
Old May 24th, 2002, 01:14 PM
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You will find a directory of Michelin travel products at this website:

Enjoy your travels

Old May 24th, 2002, 01:17 PM
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We find them to be good tourist guides to France.

The new editions have colour pics.

Standard price in France is FF 79, about USD 12.

Available in Tabac, Presse and supermarkets as well as gas stations.
Available in English in tourist areas.
Also some available in German and Dutch.

Funny story ..................

I have the French version for Languedoc, but one of my visitors had the English version. Upon comparing them, the French one gave a picture and description of a 2 metre poisonous snake called "the montpellier snake". The English version missed that bit !


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