The first Lonely Planet guide contained bizarre advice for travellers

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Kung-fu Hillbilly
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The first Lonely Planet guide contained bizarre advice for travellers

Post by Kung-fu Hillbilly » Thu Jun 28, 2018 6:44 pm

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On the road east of Erzurum, Turkey, bound for the Iranian border in 1974. Photo: Alamy

By Oliver Smith
June 18 2018


"Things to Buy" section: "Chicks can pick up easy money working for the escort services - they're quite respectable."


The [very first] book, which explains how to do the classic "hippie trail" or "overland", via Turkey, Tehran, India and Bangkok, on a shoestring budget, offers an eye-opening and often amusing snapshot of a continent – and the priorities of the young travellers exploring it. Forty-five years on, here are a few of the more curious excerpts for each country.

"We rolled up to the Afghanistan border at Islam Q'ala and could find no sign of officialdom. Eventually we found a group of rather stoned looking Americans sitting on the floor in one building. 'Where's everyone?' we asked, and got the obvious answer 'gone for lunch'. 'How long have you been here' we asked - 'about six hours'. 'Good grief what have you been doing all that time?' - 'blowing a little dope with customs'. Of course."

Should you be running low on cash or supplies, Kuwait was a good bet: "You can stock up here on everything at very cheap prices and get free medical care. Price for blood in Kuwait is probably the highest in the world, sell a pint or two if you are broke.

Full article http://www.traveller.com.au/become-an-e ... ers-h11j1j
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Re: The first Lonely Planet guide contained bizarre advice for travellers

Post by Heng Heng Heng » Thu Jun 28, 2018 6:59 pm

The Thailand copy I had in '87 was circa '84. It had info like where to score dope and the street hooker scene in Chiang Mai. When LP was distributed in the US, it became sanitized and for a different class of traveller. I felt they had sold out.
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Re: The first Lonely Planet guide contained bizarre advice for travellers

Post by Kung-fu Hillbilly » Thu Jun 28, 2018 7:09 pm

I was a Lonely Planet fanboy from the late eighties up until Tony sold it to the BBC around 2007 (?),I must have had over forty copies of various country editions at one stage. There was something about getting your hands on a new edition, say India which was a tomb of a publication, to spend the next weeks working your way through planning the next escape.
The idea that seeing the world is going from place to place to look at obvious things is an illusion natural to dull minds.
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Re: The first Lonely Planet guide contained bizarre advice for travellers

Post by Heng Heng Heng » Thu Jun 28, 2018 7:49 pm

Kung-fu Hillbilly wrote:
Thu Jun 28, 2018 7:09 pm
I was a Lonely Planet fanboy from the late eighties up until Tony sold it to the BBC around 2007 (?),I must have had over forty copies of various country editions at one stage. There was something about getting your hands on a new edition, say India which was a tomb of a publication, to spend the next weeks working your way through planning the next escape.
Me too. I would pore over those books, planning, dreaming and budgeting. Those books were sexy. I was on their mailing list and they sent me paperback updates for free. I don't know how they could do it. LP inspired me to travel to unknown and off the beaten path places. I confess, I was a backpacker, and I believed in the ethos, but I used soap. I remember Tony Wheeler saying something like "Sorry Conrad, I support families by staying in smaller family run establishments." Nowadays, I see the folly, I know I support more families by staying in a 4 or 5 star hotel. When they created the Thorn Tree. I was crushed, it wasn't the same, and the dream had gone. It was now the age of the flashpacker; the dawn of a new era.
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Re: The first Lonely Planet guide contained bizarre advice for travellers

Post by phuketrichard » Thu Jun 28, 2018 9:00 pm

I used the "across Asia on the cheap " written in 1973, The 1st yellow bible, ( cost $1.80) on my Amsterdam- Kathmandu trip in 1974

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U can get it for free on amazon for ur kindle
https://www.amazon.com/Lonely-Planet-Ac ... B00BG37DCS

well worth reading just to see how easy & cheap it was to travel back than :thumb: :thumb:

How did the first Lonely Planet book come about?
We intended to go around the world in a year, live in Sydney for three months and come back to London. But even before we arrived [in Australia] we thought we’d make it a longer trip and spend three years away. We drove from London to Afghanistan in an old minivan and then made our way through Asia to Australia. While we were living in Sydney, we’d meet people [who’d ask about the trip] and they’d say what did you do, how did you do this, and we’d jot notes down for them. Back then the phrase “gap year” hadn’t been invented. There were people doing it, but the numbers [were much smaller] than today.
https://www.theguardian.com/small-busin ... e-gap-year
Price for blood in Kuwait is probably the highest in the world, sell a pint or two if you are broke.
we got $45 in '75 which was just about enough $$ for a week travel/lodging
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Re: The first Lonely Planet guide contained bizarre advice for travellers

Post by Cowshed Cowboy » Fri Jun 29, 2018 7:00 am

I got my round the world air ticket at Trailfinders in Kensington High Street in 1994 and I bought my South East Asia Lonely Planet across the road in I think it was Waterstones bookshop. In the window they were advertising an evening slide show and talk by Tony and his wife which I went along to. They’d just done an across America road trip, the Route 66 thing, which was the slideshow topic and the general travel experiences question and answer session afterwards was highly entertaining, a great night. Breakfast at my first pit-stop at Khao San Road and the guy at the next table sat down with the same LP book and we both laughed and got chatting, he was a doctor heading on to Sri Lanka to do some voluntary work, so we headed off down to Koh Samui had a great laugh for a couple of weeks and went our separate ways. It was a good ice-breaker.
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Re: The first Lonely Planet guide contained bizarre advice for travellers

Post by canucklhead » Fri Jun 29, 2018 2:47 pm

Khao San in the eighties. What a completely different place it was!
Always liked the lp for the map references.
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Re: The first Lonely Planet guide contained bizarre advice for travellers

Post by prahocalypse now » Sat Jun 30, 2018 8:19 am

The Lonely Planet guidebook for Cambodia, first edition, 1992.

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As usual, the photography was excellent although in retrospect, it was probably not the best editorial decision to publish photos of naked children in a travel guide for Cambodia in the early 90s.

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Did anyone ever visit the Boeng Kak Amusement Park?
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Re: The first Lonely Planet guide contained bizarre advice for travellers

Post by Anchor Moy » Mon Jul 02, 2018 6:57 pm

More nostalgia, from the days when being off the beaten track meant that you could go for months without contacting your family. And nobody considered that weird.
Travel in the 1970s: Eight things that would shock backpackers today

You could travel for weeks without a Facebook feed

We wrote and received letters from friends and family. It was haphazard, but you discovered that being incommunicado is wonderfully liberating. Your loved ones wrote to you c/o poste restante and the central post office would hold letters for collection, at least in theory. Sometimes your mail would be filed under your Christian name but surprisingly it worked, most of the time. In some places you were advised to take your letter to the post office and watch them stamp the postmark, thus avoiding the possibility that the stamps could be peeled off and re-sold.
http://www.traveller.com.au/travel-in-t ... 70s-h10fgz
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