Friday, July 8, 2011

Book "Essential India" a Fodor's Travel Guide by Vidya Balachander et al.

About the Book: Full-color guide • Make your trip to India unforgettable with illustrated features, maps, and color photos.
Customize your trip with simple planning tools • Convenient overview of each region and its highlights • Ideas for making the most of your time — Practical advice for getting around • Easy-to-read color city, neighborhood, and regional maps.
Explore Delhi, Mumbai, the Taj Mahal, and beyond • Discerning Fodor’s Choice picks for hotels, restaurants, sights, and more • “Word of Mouth” tips from fellow Fodor’s travelers • Illustrated features on the Taj Mahal, discovering Varanasi, and Getting Around India • Best side trip excursions, best holy sites to visit, and best markets for shopping and bargaining.
Opinions from destination experts • Fodor’s India-based writers reveal their favorite local haunts — Frequently updated to provide the latest information.

About the Authors: Vidya Balachander has lived in many cities throughout India, including Chennai and Bangalore, but Mumbai is the place that she always seems to come back to. Her first job was working in Mumbai for the television channel CNBC-TV 18 and since then, she has also worked as a reporter for Time Out and the Hindustan Times.Vidya wrote several of the features in the "Experience" chapter for this edition of Fodor's Essential India.
Other writers are Margot Bigg, Tanvi Chheda, Neil Munshi, Ambika Muttoo, John Rambow, Mrinalini Reddy and Sonal Shah.

My Review: Fodor's Travel Guides never disappoint and this one in particular is no exception. The writers and the editor did a superb job putting together this wonderful guide, with full description of places, that should be able to fulfill all your needs for information on what to do, how to do, where to go, etc... when you are in India.
I have never been in that region and looking at this guide made me want to go and visit many places. This guide is fully illustrated with beautiful photos and maps and they go deep in details on every attraction that you can find in that country.

They propose the golden triangle itinerary for a 11-day trip that cover the most important places in Delhi, Jaipur, Agra (The Taj Mahal) and Fatehpur Sikri, besides giving you a high level picture of the history of each place. Suggested attractions to visit have a reference price and hours of operation. Other add-ons proposed are Mumbai and Goa from Delhi, and Varanasi and Khajurao, also from Delhi..

Finally the "Where to Eat", "Where to Stay", "Shopping", and "Nightlife" sections of the guide are a tremendous help when you are planning your trip.
This is an outstanding result for a combined effort from eight different writers and it was published by Fodor's Travel, a division of Random House Inc. in June 2011. I recommend this book for those who are serious about planing their trips and also for those who want to remember details on previous travels, while wishing they can return to India some day in the future. was kind enough to provide this book for me through their Vine Program for reviewing and I was not request to provide a positive review. Opinions expressed here are my own.
If you read this review, fell free to leave a comment!

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