Guidebooks:

Rough Guide (RG) and Lonely Planet (LP) : both are very comprehensive and well organised, with plenty of maps and tips of every kind, covering much sites and details you won't find easily on more "tourist oriented" guides which sometimes look like a collection of touristic advertisings.

Perhaps not the more adequated for those who like to get some sort of classification like "must see", "interesting", "only worth if you...", as they tend to be very neutral on issues like "importance", "beauty" and so on.

Sometimes LP (RG also, but not so much) seems to focus too much on advice and prices of accomodation and eating. Although LP has plenty of text on historical and cultural issues, in the whole, RG tends to cover those themes a little more deeply or in a more interesting way.

Choosing where to eat or sleep based solely on these guides isn't a very good idea in places where there is much offer - there is no paper space to cover all the options, so much good places aren't mentioned. Prices can also fail on accuracy, but again, it is hardly fault of the authors, who themselves note that things can change quickly.

Christian Jacq, a successful French Egyptologist with plenty of books on Egypt , has an excellent guide on ancient monuments: "Voyage dans l'Egypt des pharaons" - the original French title. It focuses essentially on the areas most accessible to the average tourist, although it also covers others, like some in the almost forbidden (for foreign travellers) zone of Medium Egypt.  The writing is compact, comprehensive and you don't need any great previous knowledge on Ancient Egyptian culture to understand it. Every aspect related to the monuments (architecture, religion, history, etc.) is well explained and put into context.

Kent Weeks, Archaeologist and Egyptologist has written an excellent guide for Luxor and the Theban Westbank called "The Treasures of Luxor and the Valley of the Kings". The book is filled with many good illustrations and is available in other languages as well.

Around Egypt you can also find small, handy books covering different areas of the country. They cost around LE 30 and are published by The American University in Cairo. They have good pictures and short texts explaining the most important sites around the country. Look for those books in larger hotels and in bookstores.

Travel Pictorial - Country or Natural Wonder

Always browse any or all Travel Pictorial books about a country, region or a natural wonder of the world . You will find excellent photography to view at leisure. Check out any bookstore or library ( lending or reference ).

Travel Guide(s) - Country, Region or City

Always glance through any Travel Guide for the region you are planning to visit. You will always find some nuggat of useful information. The layout and content will always vary with the publisher. Every traveller should make it a priority to browse one or all of the guides listed below. It will be a great education to browse the layout and view the excellent photography. You decide which of the travel guide(s)  you like the best.

  • DK Eyewitness Travel Guide(s)
  • Insight / Discovery Channel Travel Guide(s)
  • Lonely Planet Guide(s)
  • AA Explorer, AA Key or AA Spiral Guide(s)
  • Note: You will find about thirteen ( 13+ ) other publishing companies  travel guides in bookstores.  

Travel Books - Children or Junior

Browse the children's or junior section of your local library for travel and geography guides. You will find a variety of guides to countries, regions or natural wonders of the world. The majority of these guides will be less than fifty pages in length. They will contain an excellent overview of a country etc. They are an excellent introduction to travel for a novice traveller.

Travel DVD or Video Viewing

  • These are a few ideas for finding Travel DVD's in your local area.
  • Local Video Rental Store
  • Local Library - Travel Video or DVD
  • Any large music store will have a range of travel DVD's or  Video's on sale.
  • Travel Video Store has an excellent internet site.
  • BBC Video series website section
  • Pilot Travel Guide series 
  • National  Geographic Travel DVD or Video Series
  • Escorted Tour Companies  DVD or Video's  e.g. Rick Steves' 
  • National Tourist Bureaus MAY have a introduction Video or DVD on offer  or Photo Gallery on their Internet site