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Born to Run: A Hidden Tribe, Superathletes, and the Greatest Race the World Has Never Seen

Born to Run: A Hidden Tribe, Superathletes, and the Greatest Race the World Has Never Seen Lowest new price: $6.75
Lowest used price: $1.00
List price: $16.00
Author: Christopher McDougall
Brand: Random House

The astonishing national bestseller and hugely entertaining story that completely changed the way we run.

An epic adventure that began with one simple question: Why does my foot hurt?
 
Isolated by Mexico's deadly Copper Canyons, the blissful Tarahumara Indians have honed the ability to run hundreds of miles without rest or injury. In a riveting narrative, award-winning journalist and often-injured runner Christopher McDougall sets out to discover their secrets. In the process, he takes his readers from science labs at Harvard to the sun-baked valleys and freezing peaks across North America, where ever-growing numbers of ultra-runners are pushing their bodies to the limit, and, finally, to a climactic race in the Copper Canyons that pits America’s best ultra-runners against the tribe. McDougall’s incredible story will not only engage your mind but inspire your body when you realize that you, indeed all of us, were born to run.

Book Description
Full of incredible characters, amazing athletic achievements, cutting-edge science, and, most of all, pure inspiration, Born to Run is an epic adventure that began with one simple question: Why does my foot hurt? In search of an answer, Christopher McDougall sets off to find a tribe of the world’s greatest distance runners and learn their secrets, and in the process shows us that everything we thought we knew about running is wrong.

Isolated by the most savage terrain in North America, the reclusive Tarahumara Indians of Mexico’s deadly Copper Canyons are custodians of a lost art. For centuries they have practiced techniques that allow them to run hundreds of miles without rest and chase down anything from a deer to an Olympic marathoner while enjoying every mile of it. Their superhuman talent is matched by uncanny health and serenity, leaving the Tarahumara immune to the diseases and strife that plague modern existence. With the help of Caballo Blanco, a mysterious loner who lives among the tribe, the author was able not only to uncover the secrets of the Tarahumara but also to find his own inner ultra-athlete, as he trained for the challenge of a lifetime: a fifty-mile race through the heart of Tarahumara country pitting the tribe against an odd band of Americans, including a star ultramarathoner, a beautiful young surfer, and a barefoot wonder.

With a sharp wit and wild exuberance, McDougall takes us from the high-tech science labs at Harvard to the sun-baked valleys and freezing peaks across North America, where ever-growing numbers of ultrarunners are pushing their bodies to the limit, and, finally, to the climactic race in the Copper Canyons. Born to Run is that rare book that will not only engage your mind but inspire your body when you realize that the secret to happiness is right at your feet, and that you, indeed all of us, were born to run.


Amazon Exclusive: A Q&A with Christopher McDougall

Question: Born to Run explores the life and running habits of the Tarahumara Indians of Mexico’s Copper Canyon, arguably the greatest distance runners in the world. What are some of the secrets you learned from them?

Christopher McDougall: The key secret hit me like a thunderbolt. It was so simple, yet such a jolt. It was this: everything I’d been taught about running was wrong. We treat running in the modern world the same way we treat childbirth—it’s going to hurt, and requires special exercises and equipment, and the best you can hope for is to get it over with quickly with minimal damage.

Then I meet the Tarahumara, and they’re having a blast. They remember what it’s like to love running, and it lets them blaze through the canyons like dolphins rocketing through waves. For them, running isn’t work. It isn’t a punishment for eating. It’s fine art, like it was for our ancestors. Way before we were scratching pictures on caves or beating rhythms on hollow trees, we were perfecting the art of combining our breath and mind and muscles into fluid self-propulsion over wild terrain. And when our ancestors finally did make their first cave paintings, what were the first designs? A downward slash, lightning bolts through the bottom and middle—behold, the Running Man.

The Tarahumara have a saying: “Children run before they can walk.” Watch any four-year-old—they do everything at full speed, and it’s all about fun. That’s the most important thing I picked up from my time in the Copper Canyons, the understanding that running can be fast and fun and spontaneous, and when it is, you feel like you can go forever. But all of that begins with your feet. Strange as it sounds, the Tarahumara taught me to change my relationship with the ground. Instead of hammering down on my heels, the way I’d been taught all my life, I learned to run lightly and gently on the balls of my feet. The day I mastered it was the last day I was ever injured.

Q: You trained for your first ultramarathon—a race organized by the mysterious gringo expat Caballo Blanco between the Tarahumara and some of America’s top ultrarunners—while researching and writing this book. What was your training like?

CM: It really started as kind of a dare. Just by chance, I’d met an adventure-sports coach from Jackson Hole, Wyoming named Eric Orton. Eric’s specialty is tearing endurance sports down to their basic components and looking for transferable skills. He studies rock climbing to find shoulder techniques for kayakers, and applies Nordic skiing’s smooth propulsion to mountain biking. What he’s looking for are basic engineering principles, because he’s convinced that the next big leap forward in fitness won’t come from strength or technology, but plain, simple durability. With some 70% of all runners getting hurt every year, the athlete who can stay healthy and avoid injury will leave the competition behind.

So naturally, Eric idolized the Tarahumara. Any tribe that has 90-year-old men running across mountaintops obviously has a few training tips up its sleeve. But since Eric had never actually met the Tarahumara, he had to deduce their methods by pure reasoning. His starting point was uncertainty; he assumed that the Tarahumara step into the unknown every time they leave their caves, because they never know how fast they’ll have to sprint after a rabbit or how tricky the climbing will be if they’re caught in a storm. They never even know how long a race will be until they step up to the starting line—the distance is only determined in a last-minute bout of negotiating and could stretch anywhere from 50 miles to 200-plus.

Eric figured shock and awe was the best way for me to build durability and mimic Tarahumara-style running. He’d throw something new at me every day—hopping drills, lunges, mile intervals—and lots and lots of hills. There was no such thing, really, as long, slow distance—he’d have me mix lots of hill repeats and short bursts of speed into every mega-long run.

I didn’t think I could do it without breaking down, and I told Eric that from the start. I basically defied him to turn me into a runner. And by the end of nine months, I was cranking out four hour runs without a problem.

Q: You’re a six-foot four-inches tall, 200-plus pound guy—not anyone’s typical vision of a distance runner, yet you’ve completed ultra marathons and are training for more. Is there a body type for running, as many of us assume, or are all humans built to run?

CM: Yeah, I’m a big’un. But isn’t it sad that’s even a reasonable question? I bought into that bull for a loooong time. Why wouldn’t I? I was constantly being told by people who should know better that “some bodies aren’t designed for running.” One of the best sports medicine physicians in the country told me exactly that—that the reason I was constantly getting hurt is because I was too big to handle the impact shock from my feet hitting the ground. Just recently, I interviewed a nationally-known sports podiatrist who said, “You know, we didn’t ALL evolve to run away from saber-toothed tigers.” Meaning, what? That anyone who isn’t sleek as a Kenyan marathoner should be extinct? It’s such illogical blather—all kinds of body types exist today, so obviously they DID evolve to move quickly on their feet. It’s really awful that so many doctors are reinforcing this learned helplessness, this idea that you have to be some kind of elite being to handle such a basic, universal movement.

Q: If humans are born to run, as you argue, what’s your advice for a runner who is looking to make the leap from shorter road races to marathons, or marathons to ultramarathons? Is running really for everyone?

CM: I think ultrarunning is America’s hope for the future. Honestly. The ultrarunners have got a hold of some powerful wisdom. You can see it at the starting line of any ultra race. I showed up at the Leadville Trail 100 expecting to see a bunch of hollow-eyed Skeletors, and instead it was, “Whoah! Get a load of the hotties!” Ultra runners tend to be amazingly healthy, youthful and—believe it or not—good looking. I couldn’t figure out why, until one runner explained that throughout history, the four basic ingredients for optimal health have been clean air, good food, fresh water and low stress. And that, to a T, describes the daily life of an ultrarunner. They’re out in the woods for hours at a time, breathing pine-scented breezes, eating small bursts of digestible food, downing water by the gallons, and feeling their stress melt away with the miles. But here’s the real key to that kingdom: you have to relax and enjoy the run. No one cares how fast you run 50 miles, so ultrarunners don’t really stress about times. They’re out to enjoy the run and finish strong, not shave a few inconsequential seconds off a personal best. And that’s the best way to transition up to big mileage races: as coach Eric told me, “If it feels like work, you’re working too hard.”

Q: You write that distance running is the great equalizer of age and gender. Can you explain?

CM: Okay, I’ll answer that question with a question: Starting at age nineteen, runners get faster every year until they hit their peak at twenty-seven. After twenty-seven, they start to decline. So if it takes you eight years to reach your peak, how many years does it take for you to regress back to the same speed you were running at nineteen?

Go ahead, guess all you want. No one I’ve asked has ever come close. It’s in the book, so I won’t give it away, but I guarantee when you hear the answer, you’ll say, “No way. THAT old?” Now, factor in this: ultra races are the only sport in the world in which women can go toe-to-toe with men and hand them their heads. Ann Trason and Krissy Moehl often beat every man in the field in some ultraraces, while Emily Baer recently finished in the Top 10 at the Hardrock 100 while stopping to breastfeed her baby at the water stations.

So how’s that possible? According to a new body of research, it’s because humans are the greatest distance runners on earth. We may not be fast, but we’re born with such remarkable natural endurance that humans are fully capable of outrunning horses, cheetahs and antelopes. That’s because we once hunted in packs and on foot; all of us, men and women alike, young and old together.

Q: One of the fascinating parts of Born to Run is your report on how the ultrarunners eat—salad for breakfast, wraps with hummus mid-run, or pizza and beer the night before a run. As a runner with a lot of miles behind him, what are your thoughts on nutrition for running?

CM: Live every day like you’re on the lam. If you’ve got to be ready to pick up and haul butt at a moment’s notice, you’re not going to be loading up on gut-busting meals. I thought I’d have to go on some kind of prison-camp diet to get ready for an ultra, but the best advice I got came from coach Eric, who told me to just worry about the running and the eating would take care of itself. And he was right, sort of. I instinctively began eating smaller, more digestible meals as my miles increased, but then I went behind his back and consulted with the great Dr. Ruth Heidrich, an Ironman triathlete who lives on a vegan diet. She’s the one who gave me the idea of having salad for breakfast, and it’s a fantastic tip. The truth is, many of the greatest endurance athletes of all time lived on fruits and vegetables. You can get away with garbage for a while, but you pay for it in the long haul. In the book, I describe how Jenn Shelton and Billy “Bonehead” Barnett like to chow pizza and Mountain Dew in the middle of 100-mile races, but Jenn is also a vegetarian who most days lives on veggie burgers and grapes.

Q: In this difficult financial time, we’re experiencing yet another surge in the popularity of running. Can you explain this?

CM: When things look worst, we run the most. Three times, America has seen distance-running skyrocket and it’s always in the midst of a national crisis. The first boom came during the Great Depression; the next was in the ‘70s, when we were struggling to recover from a recession, race riots, assassinations, a criminal President and an awful war. And the third boom? One year after the Sept. 11 attacks, trailrunning suddenly became the fastest-growing outdoor sport in the country. I think there’s a trigger in the human psyche that activates our first and greatest survival skill whenever we see the shadow of approaching raptors.

(Photo © James Rexroad)

Features:

  • Born To Run
  • Fitness
  • Christopher Mcdougall

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The Stranger in the Woods: The Extraordinary Story of the Last True Hermit

The Stranger in the Woods: The Extraordinary Story of the Last True Hermit Lowest new price: $9.95
Lowest used price: $6.30
List price: $16.00
Author: Michael Finkel

A National Geographic Best Book of the Year 

National Bestseller


Many people dream of escaping modern life. Most will never act on it—but in 1986, twenty-year-old Christopher Knight did just that when he left his home in Massachusetts, drove to Maine, and disappeared into the woods. He would not have a conversation with another person for the next twenty-seven years.
 
Drawing on extensive interviews with Knight himself, journalist Michael Finkel shows how Knight lived in a tent in a secluded encampment, developing ingenious ways to store provisions and stave off frostbite during the winters. A former alarm technician, he stealthily broke into nearby cottages for food, books, and supplies, taking only what he needed but sowing unease in a community plagued by his mysterious burglaries. Since returning to the world, he has faced unique challenges—and compelled us to reexamine our assumptions about what makes a good life. By turns riveting and thought-provoking, The Stranger in the Woods gives us a deeply moving portrait of a man determined to live his own way.

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2018 Rand McNally Deluxe Motor Carriers' Road Atlas (Rand Mcnally Motor Carriers' Road Atlas Deluxe Edition)

2018 Rand McNally Deluxe Motor Carriers' Road Atlas (Rand Mcnally Motor Carriers' Road Atlas Deluxe Edition) Lowest new price: $20.70
Lowest used price: $45.00
List price: $23.00
Author: Rand McNally

Laminated and spiral bound Motor Carriers' Road Atlas for heavy-duty users
The #1 selling trucker's road atlas in North America is as tough as the rig you're driving. With its laminated pages and spiral binding, the Deluxe Motor Carriers' Road Atlas can stand up to all of the wear-and-tear from the road. Save time and money with this easy to use atlas.


Other Features
Durable, laminated pages stand up to stains and liquids, and won't show signs of normal wear-and-tear
Tough spiral binding allows the book to lay open easily
Detailed coverage of state and national designated routes
Updated restricted routes, low clearance, and weigh station locations
22-page mileage directory including more than 40,000 truck-route-specific, city-to-city mileage
Road construction and conditions hotlines
Updated coverage of hazardous materials regulations
Easy-to-use chart of state and provincial permit agency phone numbers and websites

Dimensions: 11.25 x 15.375

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Rick Steves Florence & Tuscany

Rick Steves Florence & Tuscany Lowest new price: $13.64
Lowest used price: $14.48
List price: $21.99
Author: Rick Steves

Walk in the footsteps of the Medici, sip aperitivi, and discover the cultural heart of Italy: with Rick Steves on your side, Florence and Tuscany can be yours!

Inside Rick Steves Florence & Tuscany you'll find:

  • Comprehensive coverage for spending a week or more exploring Florence and Tuscany
  • Rick's strategic advice on how to get the most out of your time and money, with rankings of his must-see favorites
  • Top sights and hidden gems, from the Uffizi Gallery and the Duomo to a 600-year-old perfumery
  • How to connect with local culture: Let a street musician serenade you on the Ponte Vecchio, stroll through a morning market sampling freshly-made pasta, and sip full-bodied wines with Montalcino locals at a corner enoteca
  • Beat the crowds, skip the lines, and avoid tourist traps with Rick's candid, humorous insight
  • The best places to eat, sleep, and relax with a glass of wine
  • Self-guided walking tours of lively neighborhoods and incredible museums
  • Detailed maps for exploring on the go, including driving tours through the heart of Tuscany and Brunello wine country
  • Useful resources including a packing list, an Italian phrase book, a historical overview, and recommended reading
  • Over 400 bible-thin pages include everything worth seeing without weighing you down
  • Complete, up-to-date information on Florence, Siena, Pisa, Lucca, Volterra, San Gimignano, Montepulciano, Pienza, Montalcino, Cortona, and more
Make the most of every day and every dollar with Rick Steves Florence & Tuscany.

Spending less than a week exploring Florence? Try Rick Steves Pocket Florence.

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National Geographic Field Guide to the Birds of North America, 7th Edition

National Geographic Field Guide to the Birds of North America, 7th Edition Lowest new price: $18.92
Lowest used price: $19.86
List price: $29.99
Author: Jon L. Dunn
Brand: NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC

This fully revised edition of the best-selling North American bird field guide is the most up-to-date guide on the market. Perfect for beginning to advanced birders, it is the only book organized to match the latest American Ornithological Society taxonomy.

With more than 2.75 million copies in print, this perennial bestseller is the most frequently updated of all North American bird field guides. Filled with hand-painted illustrations from top nature artists (including the ever-popular hummingbird), this latest edition is poised to become an instant must-have for every serious birder in the United States and Canada. The 7th edition includes 37 new species for a total of 1,023 species; 16 new pages allow for 250 fresh illustrations; 80 new maps; and 350 map revisions. With taxonomy revised to reflect the radical new American Ornithological Society taxonomy established in 2016, the addition of standardized banding codes, and text completely vetted by birding experts, this new edition will top of the list of birding field guides for years to come.

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  • NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC

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Lonely Planet Iceland (Travel Guide)

Lonely Planet Iceland (Travel Guide) Lowest new price: $14.97
Lowest used price: $13.00
List price: $27.99
Author: Lonely Planet
Brand: LONELY PLANET

#1 best-selling guide to Iceland *

Lonely Planet Iceland is your passport to the most relevant, up-to-date advice on what to see and skip, and what hidden discoveries await you. Splash around in the Blue Lagoon's geothermal water, catch a glimpse of the celestial Northern Lights, or take a boat trip among the icebergs; all with your trusted travel companion. Get to the heart of Iceland and begin your journey now!

Inside Lonely Planet's Iceland Travel Guide:

  • Colour maps and images throughout
  • Highlights and itineraries help you tailor your trip to your personal needs and interests
  • Insider tips to save time and money and get around like a local, avoiding crowds and trouble spots
  • Essential info at your fingertips - hours of operation, phone numbers, websites, transit tips, prices
  • Honest reviews for all budgets - eating, sleeping, sight-seeing, going out, shopping, hidden gems that most guidebooks miss
  • Cultural insights give you a richer, more rewarding travel experience - history, politics, landscapes, wildlife, literature, music, cinema, art, architecture, customs, cuisine.
  • Free, convenient pull-out Reykjavik map (included in print version), plus over 37 maps
  • Covers Reykjavik, the Westfjords, the Highlands, North Iceland, East Iceland, South Iceland, the Golden Circle, Southwest Iceland, the Eastfjords, Akureyri, Hunafloi and more

The Perfect Choice: Lonely Planet Iceland, our most comprehensive guide to Iceland, is perfect for both exploring top sights and taking roads less travelled.

  • Looking for a guide focused on Reykjavik? Check out Lonely Planet's Pocket Reykjavik, a handy-sized guide focused on the can't-miss sights for a quick trip.
  • Looking for more extensive coverage? Check out Lonely Planet's Scandinavia guide for a comprehensive look at all the region has to offer.

About Lonely Planet: Since 1973, Lonely Planet has become the world's leading travel media company with guidebooks to every destination, an award-winning website, mobile and digital travel products, and a dedicated traveller community. Lonely Planet covers must-see spots but also enables curious travellers to get off beaten paths to understand more of the culture of the places in which they find themselves. The world awaits!

Lonely Planet guides have won the TripAdvisor Traveler's Choice Award in 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, and 2016.

'Lonely Planet. It's on everyone's bookshelves; it's in every traveller's hands. It's on mobile phones. It's on the Internet. It's everywhere, and it's telling entire generations of people how to travel the world.' -- Fairfax Media

'Lonely Planet guides are, quite simply, like no other.' - New York Times

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DK Eyewitness Travel Guide Ireland

DK Eyewitness Travel Guide Ireland Lowest new price: $15.62
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List price: $25.00
Author: DK Travel

From touring historic castles to exploring the countryside along the mystical Ring of Kerry to drinking Guinness in Dublin's coziest pub, experience the best of what the Emerald Isle has to offer.

Discover DK Eyewitness Travel Guide: Ireland.

   • Hotel and restaurant listings and recommendations.
   • Detailed itineraries and "don't-miss" destination highlights at a glance.
   • Illustrated cutaway 3-D drawings of important sights.
   • Floor plans and guided visitor information for major museums.
   • Full-color pull-out map marked with sights, a selected site and street index, public transit map, practical information on getting around, and a distance chart for measuring walking distances.
   • Guided walking tours, local drink and dining specialties to try, things to do, and places to eat, drink, and shop by area.
   • Area maps marked with sights and restaurants.
   • Detailed city maps include street finder index for easy navigation.
   • Insights into history and culture to help you understand the stories behind the sights.
   • Suggested day-trips and itineraries to explore beyond the city.

With hundreds of full-color photographs, hand-drawn illustrations, and custom maps that illuminate every page, DK Eyewitness Travel Guide: Ireland truly shows you what others only tell you.

Series Overview: For more than two decades, DK Eyewitness Travel Guides have helped travelers experience the world through the history, art, architecture, and culture of their destinations. Expert travel writers and researchers provide independent editorial advice, recommendations, and reviews. With guidebooks to hundreds of places around the globe available in print and digital formats, DK Eyewitness Travel Guides show travelers how they can discover more.

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Rick Steves Pocket Barcelona

Rick Steves Pocket Barcelona Lowest new price: $6.61
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Author: Rick Steves
Brand: imusti

Rick Steves Pocket guidebooks truly are a “tour guide in your pocket.” Each colorful, compact 280-page book includes Rick's advice for prioritizing your time, whether you're spending 1 or 7 days in a city. Everything a busy traveler needs is easy to access: a neighborhood overview, city walks and tours, sights, handy food and accommodations charts, an appendix packed with information on trip planning and practicalities, and a fold-out city map.

Rick Steves Pocket Barcelona includes the following walks and tours:

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Lonely Planet Italy (Travel Guide)

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Author: Lonely Planet

Lonely Planet: The world's leading travel guide publisher

Lonely Planet Italy is your passport to the most relevant, up-to-date advice on what to see and skip, and what hidden discoveries await you. Wander through chariot-grooved streets in Pompeii, sample the abundant varieties of wine and olives as you tour Tuscany, or toss a coin into the Trevi Fountain in Rome; all with your trusted travel companion. Get to the heart of Italy and begin your journey now!

Inside Lonely Planet Italy Travel Guide:

  • Full-colour maps and images throughout
  • Highlights and itineraries help you tailor your trip to your personal needs and interests
  • Insider tips to save time and money and get around like a local, avoiding crowds and trouble spots
  • Essential info at your fingertips - hours of operation, phone numbers, websites, transit tips, prices
  • Honest reviews for all budgets - eating, sleeping, sight-seeing, going out, shopping, hidden gems that most guidebooks miss
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  • Covers Rome, Turin, Piedmont, the Italian Riviera, Milan, the Lakes, Dolomites, Venice, Emilia-Romagna, Florence, Tuscany, Umbria, Abruzzo, Naples, Campania, Puglia, Sicily, Sardinia and more

The Perfect Choice: Lonely Planet Italy, our most comprehensive guide to Italy, is perfect for both exploring top sights and taking roads less travelled.

Looking for a guide focused on a particular Italian city? Check out our relevant Lonely Planet city guides for comprehensive looks at what each city has to offer; or check out our relevant Pocket guides, handy-sized guides focused on the can't-miss sights for quick city visits.

About Lonely Planet: Lonely Planet is a leading travel media company and the world's number one travel guidebook brand, providing both inspiring and trustworthy information for every kind of traveller since 1973. Over the past four decades, we've printed over 145 million guidebooks and phrasebooks for 120 languages, and grown a dedicated, passionate global community of travellers. You'll also find our content online, and in mobile apps, video, 14 languages, 12 international magazines, armchair and lifestyle books, ebooks, and more, enabling you to explore every day. Lonely Planet enables the curious to experience the world fully and to truly get to the heart of the places they find themselves, near or far from home.

TripAdvisor Travelers' Choice Awards 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015 and 2016 winner in Favorite Travel Guide category

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Rick Steves Pocket Paris

Rick Steves Pocket Paris Lowest new price: $8.35
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Author: Rick Steves
Brand: RICK STEVES

Rick Steves Pocket guidebooks truly are a “tour guide in your pocket.” This colorful, compact 220-page book includes Rick's advice for prioritizing your time, whether you're spending 1 or 7 days in a city. Everything a busy traveler needs is easy to access: a neighborhood overview, city walks and tours, sights, handy food and accommodations charts, an appendix packed with information on trip planning and practicalities, and a fold-out city map.

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Walks and Tours: the Historic Paris Walk, Louvre Tour, Orsay Museum Tour, Eiffel Tower Tour, Rue Cler Walk, Left Bank Walk, Champs-Elysees Walk, Marais Walk and Versailles Day Trip

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