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Best maps?

Looking for good maps for Paris, Florence, Turin, Cinque Terre, Rome... Will likely use phone or a print out for CT and Turin, but a sturdier one for Paris, Florence and Rome would be nice. Not wanting to pay much...
Thanks!

Posted by
646 posts

Are you a AAA member? We love their maps (free). We've also found good ones on Amazon. There are also many great apps for your phone - CITYMAPS2GO. Also, put the RS app on your phone - he has some good ones for some cities. When we stayed in Italy, our hotels gave us great maps of the city.

RS has maps in the 'shop,' but we find better prices on the laminated Amazon maps.

Posted by
83 posts

Check out the Streetwise maps on Amazon for the big cities. They are laminated, fold easily, and have a metro map as well as city center streets. Best part is that they are under $10 each. We used ours all the time during our Paris trip years ago and I have one in the "to be packed" pile for our upcoming Munich adventure.

Posted by
2845 posts

Streetwise maps are what we use, as they are sturdy and compact, and easy to pull out and consult while walking (unlike a folded paper map).

They were out of print and very expensive for awhile, but Michelin has bought them and resumed printing, somall three are available on Amazon for around $8 each.

Posted by
9904 posts

Third vote for the Streetwise maps. Purchase them only if they are under $10. If you run across one that hasn't been re-published yet, don't order it for an outrageous amount. When Streetwise shut down some of the maps were going for $70-$100 - they are good but not that good!! I just ordered one for Edinburgh and it wasn't in print yet. It took 3-4 weeks to get to me which I knew about and was fine with.

Your hotels will also have a pad of tear off maps at their Reception desk. I've gotten along fine in Rome and Florence with them. They will also helpfully mark where the hotel is for you.

Usually the hotels in CT have maps of the whole area. IF you are doing the trails you will want one showing them, so I'd wait until I get there for that.

Posted by
21293 posts

I can usually get by for a couple of days with a freebie map from the tourist office or my hotel--assuming I don't get caught out in the rain. However, for longer stays, those things split apart at the folds. I travel with a roll of tape and reinforce them, but it's a pain. For this year's trip I'm trying out a Streetwise Budapest. It was available at $6 - $6.25 on both the Amazon and B&N websites.

If you have a nearby Barnes & Noble store you may find what you need in stock. There are other brands of laminated maps, most of which looked fine to me at a glance, but there was one I really, really disliked. It was sort of cartoonish and had pictures of key buildings plopped down in the middle of the street grid, rendering it less than complete. What a dumb idea.

Posted by
5262 posts

As others have said, Streetwise maps are very good, detailed, easy to read, durable, compact. The ones I've seen show subway and tram stations and routes. They have indexes to find streets. I don't know any better city maps, though this RS website sells "Red Maps" of various cities which I'd assume are good since they're sold here. But I have no experience with them.

In Paris we use Michelin's "Paris par Arrondissement" street atlas, with amazing detail, compact and readable and with transit maps and a good index. In London we like Benson's Visitors' Map, not an atlas but a very detailed fold-out map, perhaps not as durable as Streetwise but ours has lasted several trips.

My guess is that for all the cities you've listed there are excellent maps, maybe better than Streetwise, but harder to identify and find. So I'd go with Streetwise unless you want to do more research.

Streetwise Maps are very good, but are getting hard to come by. I believe they are going extinct. Marco Polo pocket maps may be your best alternative. RS guide books have basic maps of key sites that are adequate. Some hotels have free tourist maps at their front desks that are very good and yours for the asking. (These maps are paid for by local businesses who advertise in the margins.). I would only get a map of Paris and possibly Rome. For Florence, you can just go online with tripadvisor or similar for a map. In fact, you can just look at maps online for just about any place. Don't spend a lot on maps. I would not buy a Florence map. It's easy enough to navigate and your hotel may have a free one.

Posted by
13211 posts

Streetwise Maps are not " going extinct." The company went out of business in 2016 and the maps went out of publication. At that time the maps were going for ridiculous prices on Amazon, like $70 for the Vienna map I sought ( I did not pay that but was able to get one from a fellow RS forum member in trade for one of my maps).

Then the company was bought by Michelin maps and the maps are being published again, still under the Streetwise name. Many major cities are available again, and it sounds like Sasha checked and found Paris, Florence and Rome all available on Amazon at the normal retail price ( around $7.95).

I was able to buy one for Amsterdam for our upcoming trip. They are identical to the old ones, but are printed not n Canada by Michelin Travel. Now I should see about Frankfurt.

Posted by
6950 posts

Collins or Michelin--both available on Amazon.

Posted by
503 posts

Another vote for Streetwise maps. Have used the CityMaps2Go app and it can be very helpful - with a caveat or two!

The app is great for creating lists and mapping them out - useful for restaurants, shops, architectural sites, etc., etc.
The ONLY downside is that in areas where a signal is difficult to get - like Venice... it doesn't work very well. Also, depending upon your phone and where you are, battery life can be an issue.

Posted by
4125 posts

For Paris, buy the Paris Pratique map booklet from a tabac. It is organized by arrondissement, has an index, and is a big time saver.

You can probably buy it online too if you like, but its much more useful on the ground than as a planning aid.

Posted by
9904 posts

"It was sort of cartoonish and had pictures of key buildings plopped down in the middle of the street grid, rendering it less than complete. What a dumb idea."

Acraven, I hate that too. Also hate a view that is not a straight down aerial view. I'm not sure what you call it map-wise but I hate the ones that have you looking down at an angle. Like the floorplan of the Louvre online and in person.

Posted by
3789 posts

I know it doesn't help the OP, but I don't think I have ever bought a city map. My guide book usually has them as well as visitor's bureaus or hotel. Otherwise online maps. I prefer to keep them small, so if I need to refer to it while on the street, I like to think I am less obvious than pulling out a 2 ×3 map. For staying long term, I might be more likely to buy it in city.

Posted by
2070 posts

I have several Streetwise maps and thought they were the absolute best until I bought some of the Red Maps from Rick's store. They are amazing! Similar to the Streetwise but the plan is just a bit bigger and clearer. Much easier to read for these uh, "older" eyes! The actual size of the maps are about 1/2" longer but they also are thinner so not as bulky. I haven't used one on a trip yet but I'm really impressed so far.

Posted by
21293 posts

Thanks for posting that comparison, Darcy. Larger-scale and lighter is a really good combination!

Posted by
2162 posts

I'm with Darcy...I like Red Maps. Very readable. Not a ton of cities though so I'm trying Streetwise for Budapest this year.

Posted by
9904 posts

The Streetwise and Red Maps are not 2x3 (assume the poster meant feet like a road map). They are maybe 4inches X 8.5 inches folded and you can unfold a section at a time so you don't have a huge map in front of you like a road map. Easy to stick in your purse. Easy to back in to a doorway and discreetly unfold one section to locate yourself.