I am addicted to travel guides. The ones with beautiful photography inspire you; those that are painstakingly researched give you the confidence to explore like a local. Whether you’re hoping to inspire or inform, they also make great last-minute gifts. If you’re looking for some great resources for travel in England or France, may I suggest you choose from the following:
- Cereal City Guides for a luxe, minimalist take on a city, look no further than Cereal magazine. The natural progression of the magazine’s feature stories and online travel suggestions, each guide opens with a series of personal essays from locals that thoughtfully describe the city and lend a sense of place. What follows is stunningly photographed, exclusive-to-Cereal photos paired with Rosa Park and Rich Stapleton’s personal list of the city’s best restaurants, shops, and hotels. Paris is the latest addition to the print lineup, but guides for New York and London (newly updated) are also available.*
- Concierge Bath former Soho House (Babington) events director Josh Tully wanted to showcase his insider’s take on Bath’s independent shopping scene. His new guide, which like Cereal is image-driven, stylishly captures the essence of the city’s creative entrepreneurs, many of which operate out of gorgeous old Georgian buildings. (The sublime combination of art and architecture is what led me to fall in love with Bath, and so the book will double as a treasured keepsake.)
- Blue Crow Media Specialty Maps this map series addresses all of the subjects a committed foodie is interested in when visiting a new city. Well-designed and easy to tuck into a pocket — bonus: no roaming data! — each map/guide allows you to feel in-the-know whether your focus a well-crafted cocktail or a top-notch coffee. (London is the authors’ primary focus, but there are coffee guides for New York, Paris, and Berlin, and new maps are always being added.)
- Simple Pretty London a bit of self-promotion, but I’m proud of my tiny deck comprised of 25 favorite London spots, published by Telescope Cards. My intention was to shine a spotlight on my go-to sources for flowers, coffee, food, and shopping, honed throughout my expat experience. Telescope’s print-on-demand system means guides can easily be edited to remain current, and in that spirit I updated the guide earlier this month.
* Cereal’s website maintains an extensive city guide section.
Please note: I received review copies of all of the above guides either as gifts, or for the purpose of my review. In addition, while the Telescope deck is solely my creation, I receive no compensation from sales.