The Ultimate Guide on the Best Travel Books for South America

So what is the best travel books you could use to assist you on your travels?

For me, Lonely Planet and Footprint are the 2 best travel books you could use while travelling through South america. They both give a great deal of information that is so beneifical when moving from place to place.

Lonely Planet and Footprint offer an excellent array of information and both have their own style. They are both aimed at youngsters who are looking to budget travel for a fair amount of time and do things budget style. So they came in very handy on my trip to South America.

Before travelling to any destination I always consult the books to find out what I can do, where I can go and what I can see. I am also able to read revues on accomodation, restaurants, nightlife and safety. This is crucial information that every backpacker wants to know, so I would like to say a BIG THANK YOU to both companies for providing us with this information at my finger tips.

When travelling in South America I was lucky that I had a copy of LP's (Lonely Planet) Lonely Planet: "South America on a Shoestring" and my travel buddy had a copy of FP's "Footprint's South American Handbook" so I used both. So I will try and compare them both here so you can have a better idea of which one you want.


With regards to content I found no difference between both books. They both contain excellent information that will enable you to have a good idea of what to expect in each place you visit. You will find that data is old or wrong on some occasions in both books. For example, they both put prices for travel and accomodation in their guides. This was accurate for the time of writing and the publications are not instantaneous. Neither are they published each year so be sure to check that you have the most up-to-date guide when travelling.

I think it is amazing the amount of information they crammed into one book and they should both be credited for it. Well Done Both!


The LP guide is slightly smaller than FP. This may not seem like such a big deal but remember you will be taking this book everywhere, more often than not in your hand lugguage so you can read it on the bus or plane. So the smaller the better. Althought it must be said, the size difference is minimal.

Cover and Page Style

Now, I can only comment on the books I used and the hard back cover to the FP guide provided much greater protection than the Card cover on the LP guide. This was an advantage of the FP guide as my cover took a beating.

The content on the pages are arranged similarly. There are maps for each location and the content is divided down in the same style = countries - cities - towns - villages. However, they both keep their own style of writing.

The pages in the FP guide are wafer thin, which at times can be annoying, but they have put a lot of info in there for you, so they have gone for the most important aspect of more information over thicker paper, so it cannot be critised much.

Both books are fantastic and will sirve their purpose when travelling. For me, they are certainly the best travel books in the market and I can asure you just how well used it will be.

The LP book I bought was worth every penny and more and I would not hesitate to buy the new one in the future.

As for the very best travel books..... It's personal taste. I cannot believe you will be dissapointed with either. Travel away with these amazing books!