Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Borneo Travel Book Guide

An experience traveler will do their “homework” before visiting a place or country. Experience traveler will usually do some reading from a reliable source such as travel books by Lonely Planet or Rough Guides. However, for the Borneo region, Rough Guides don’t seems to be a good option to cover both Sarawak and Sabah as some of the maps are outdated. Rough Guides however did fairly well for Kalimantan and Brunei region. Lonely Planet is more comprehensive than Rough Guides in providing comprehensive information and maps for the Borneo region. The maps in Lonely Planet are not well presented.

I had used Rough Guides: Europe, Edition 1999 to travel Europe before and it was very helpful back them. Hence, I am an avid fan of Rough Guides (the founder also happen to be University of Bristol graduate, same as me). However, I am sorry to say that the European version in the subsequent years had fallen short in useful information, maps and public transport route (such as Amsterdam trams, Paris Metro and etc.)

In a nutshell, it is hard to find a decent reliable source of information and maps in the travel guide books for Borneo. Even the local pamphlets are not useful as the contents are not well organized and information is limited (some maps in the pamphlets are quite comprehensive). Internet and website (this include local tourism website) also don’t fare well in term of providing enough information for potential visitor. But most of the towns and cities in Borneo are pedestrian friendly and easily explored on foot. There are quite a numbers of attractions that are a bit further than the town/city and need transportation to get there.

So, the best way to get to know the places are mixing with the locals, pay attention to the local maps at signboard (this could be difficult to seen in some area) and visit my blog!

1 comment:

xsigns said...

Nice one there! Sure helpful to know those travel guides are not helpful at all, a complete (well not completely) waste of hard earned money.