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Rick Steves England (May 2016) vs Great Britain ( 2013) Kindle editions

I've changed my plans for my May 2018 trip. I'll be visiting England only in May. I've got the 2013 Kindle edition of Rick's Great Britain guide on Kindle and I've been reading it again the last couple of days. I was thinking of getting the Kindle edition of the latest England guide since I see it's 976 pages. However, I'll be focusing on cities only with no desire to drive. Rick spends a lot of time on places like the Cotswalds which I have no desire to see. I'm trying to decide between a bunch of cities, thanks to the Ibis Hotel promotion that I just received by email. Places like Nottingham, Sheffield, Leeds, York, Newcastle, Birmingham,Hull, Manchester (I've been), Liverpool (I've been), and probably starting out in London, which I know fairly well.

I've got Rick's guides to the National Gallery, British Library, City of London, and West End.

Should I spend the $15 for the Rick Steves England and is there any chance a 2018 version will be coming out soon.

Posted by
1352 posts

The new edition of the England book comes out in April. Rick covers the Cotswolds in both the England and Great Britain book. You can see which cities are covered in the guidebook by going to shop online - find the England guidebook and go to "what's included". Several of the places you are going to are not covered.

Posted by
4555 posts

Before you spend money on a new RS Guide, you might want to take a look at either the Lonely Planet or Rough Guide to England. I suspect that RS will have limited or no coverage for many of the cities on your list. Lonely Planet and Rough Guide tend to cover more places. You might check the Table of Contents or Index of these various books to see how much is devoted to the places you want to visit.

Posted by
11266 posts

As Laura said, you should look at other guidebooks. Of the specific places on your list, Rick does not cover Nottingham, Sheffield, Leeds, Newcastle, Birmingham, Hull, or Manchester! His Liverpool chapter is excellent (at least it was in the 2016 edition of his Great Britain and England books - the chapter was identical in each).

If you want to see differences between his current Great Britain and England books, click here and open "Is This The Right Book For Me?": https://store.ricksteves.com/shop/p/britain-guidebook

Posted by
1128 posts

Thanks for the feedback, I think I'll pass unless I happen to see the kindle edition popping up on a $5 sale.

As much as I like Rick, I do treat him like a good friend that I occasionally have disagreements with, I think I'm probably best looking elsewhere for England guidebooks. He certainly seems to prefer scenic and smaller areas as opposed to the cities. I've seen that in his TV shows as well as the 2013 Great Britain book that I bought. He does a good job covering London and I do enjoy the inexpensive $1.99 short London guides for Kindle.

Posted by
4408 posts

Sheffield, Leeds and Hull!! Any particular reason for visiting those?

I have to rank Hull as one of the most depressing cities I've visited.

Posted by
8889 posts

Emma, BBC iPlayer doesn't work outside the UK, it blocks you.
You need to do some techie ticks (route via a proxy in the UK) to fool it into thinking you are in the UK

Posted by
1128 posts

I figured I'd base this trip by visiting some of the Industrial Revolution cities. There are some sights nearby that I want to see, but don't want to be there for a night. For example, if I stay in Newcastle, I can easily visit Durham Cathedral as well as a day trip to York. In Leeds, day trips to York are also possible as well as Kirkstall Abbey. From Manchester or Liverpool, a day trip to Chester would be easy.

I'm gathering ideas right now and I think I'll order the Lonely Planet England guide. While Lonely Planet has gotten a bit too hip lately, I took a look at their table of contents and their England guide seems to be far more comprehensive than Ricks. I'm not into a lot of time in cute and quaint villages, and driving is out of the question since I love the fine ales there too much.

I've gotten a lot of inspiration from the Vagabrothers youtube channel. They did a trip through the north of England a couple of years ago. Here's their video on Hull:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=324v2LAiJ0o

Posted by
3518 posts

I was pleasantly surprised by Newcastle last year and wished I had planned for another day there. I would hate to see you miss a chance to visit Hadrian's wall when you are so close. This can be done as a day trip from Newcastle if it is important to you to return to the Ibis Hotel. We stayed at the Hampton Inn that is across the street from the train station and were quite pleased.