Exploring cultures and communities – the slow way

We learnt from 'The Europe Book' that Frenchmen no longer were berets, that Liechtenstein is Europe's largest exporter of dentures and that the sugar cube was invented in the former Czechoslovakia. We review Lonely Planet's latest coffee table offering.

article summary —

Have you noticed how nowadays travel writing is becoming an utterly disposable commodity? Newspaper travel supplements and even guidebooks are something to be read, used and then too often thrown away. So full marks to Lonely Planet for producing a lavish and beautiful coffee table volume called The Europe Book.

Published in September 2008, The Europe Book is a remarkable compilation of stunning images and oddball facts about the fifty-two nations which, say the experts at Lonely Planet, make up modern Europe. hidden europe may not quite agree with their reckoning on the nation count, but that does little to diminish the appeal of this splendid book. Treat it as being a photographic essay, complemented by some nicely eclectic facts that will be disputed in pub quizzes for years to come. Like the assertion that one third of all the world’s raspberries come from Serbia or the remarkable revelation that the phrase “We are about to land” when rendered in Azeri will be interpreted by Turkish air passengers as “We are about to crash.”

This is just an excerpt. If you are a subscriber to hidden europe magazine, you can log in to read the full text online. Of course you can also read the full article in the print edition of hidden europe 24.

About the authors

hidden europe

and manage hidden europe, a Berlin-based editorial bureau that supplies text and images to media across Europe. Together they edit hidden europe magazine. Nicky and Susanne are dedicated slow travellers. They delight in discovering the exotic in the everyday.

This article was published in hidden europe 24.