SOCIAL SCIENCES

Wish You Were Here: The Stories Behind 50 of the World’s Greatest Destinations

Graffeg. May 2021. 224p. ISBN 9781913134952. pap. $29.95. TRAV
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What makes a destination a great tourist spot, according to tourism consultant Stevens (Destination Wales), is a well-equipped, well-organized enterprise in a clean and safe environment. His guide presents 50 destinations in four pages each, including their international airports, population sizes, websites, and “icons,” Stevens’s term for not-to-be-missed sights or experiences. The guide concentrates on Europe, especially Germany, Austria, Slovenia, and Croatia. Two entries are for places in Canada, and seven for places in the United States. The only Asian destination is Seoul; there are two in South Africa, and none in South America. Quirky, unique experiences are not the focus of this guide, which instead highlights efficiency, reliability, and organization. The author likes vacations that are compact and focused on a specific place; spas, vineyards, gastronomy, and architecture are featured attractions. A typical endorsement: “Mountains, nature, and sport meet global luxury brands” in Kitzbuhel, Austria, a ski town in the Alps. Each entry includes one or two color photos.
VERDICT Travelers looking for well-organized tourist spots with no surprises can find new ideas for post-pandemic travel in this guidebook.
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