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Venice Step by Step (Insight Guides) Books in Review
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Venice Step by Step (Insight Guides) - The City's Best Walks and Tours
Insight Guides
ISBN 978-1-258-970-5
Published May 2009 - Softcover - 128 pages - $16.99

Upon opening this guide, I was immediately impressed with the quality of the paper.  It's wonderful to touch.  I also noticed the pull-out map at the back of the book, which is full of walking tours and many points of interest.  Whether you have just a day to visit this fantastic city, or a few days, there are tours to suit your needs.  Apart from wanting to see the obvious points of interest (the Rialto Bridge, the Bridge of Sighs, St. Marco Square, etc.), there are many other things to see and do in Venice.  There are "14 tailor-made tours" to choose from, or mix and match as suits your needs and/or time.  The tours cater to all types of travelers, whether you're interested in architecture, shopping, art, food, literature, or have children in tow.  I love the gorgeous photos in the book, and on page 12 you can see just how "watery" this city is.  Touring is not only about the sights and sounds, it's about tasting too, and the food in Venice is vast and varied.  You are guided as to where to eat, where to shop and what to expect, and there is an explanation about Carnival (and the fantastic Carnival masks).  Theatre and opera and concerts are also covered, as is a brief history, as well as accommodations, restaurants, and nightlife.  The tours are easy to follow and include maps of the walks, places of interest, museums, food and drink, start and finish spots, and the distance and time they should take.  Salient info if you're planning on visiting.  I could go and do all of these tours if I had the means, and I'd feel totally fulfilled.  The beauty of this book is not only its information, which is easy to follow and not cluttered, or the feel of the book, but its size; easy to carry with you, or you could just take the pull-out map.  So, you can plan to see the Grand Canal, The Academia (complete with floor plan!), Murano (glass blowing at its finest), and the Lido amongst many other sights.  There's a useful vocabulary section as well, which is always handy when traveling.  I look forward to revisiting this exquisite city, as a mature adult, and will include stops at Harry's Bar, revisit the glass blowing stores, and go inside the Rialto.  A gondola ride isn't out of the question either.
Exquisitely illustrated.
Conclusion - Don't forget your camera!  I whole-heartedly recommend this book on Venice.  It is superb and wonderfully comprehensive in its brevity.

book cover

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