Book Review & GIVEAWAY: DK Eyewitness Travel Guide: New York City 2014

NYC guidebook 2014

Happy birthday DK Eyewitness Travel Guides! To celebrate, they have offered eyechow readers the chance to enter to win a 4-pack of newly revised, updated and redesigned guides for 2014 (valued at $100):

  • DK Eyewitness Travel Guide: Italy
  • DK Eyewitness Travel Guide: London
  • DK Eyewitness Travel Guide: New York City
  • DK Eyewitness Travel Guide: Paris

There are four ways to enter:

  1. Follow me on Instagram: @eyechow
  2. Follow me on Twitter: @ValerieBrett
  3. Follow me on Pinterest: @eyechow
  4. Leave a comment below answering one of the following questions:
  • Which of these four places have you visited or lived in: Italy, London, New York City, Paris?
  • Of course all four locations are iconic, beloved, and heavily trafficked by visitors, but which is at the top of your “must visit next” list?

You can be entered to win up to four times. In your comment be sure to leave your Instagram and Twitter username, if you also follow me, so I can confirm your entry (if you already follow me I will still count that as an entry, as long as you include it in a comment). Winner must be in USA or Canada.

DK will ship the 4-pack directly to the contest winner, who will be chosen on July 7, which gives you two whole weeks to enter! What are you waiting for?

DK eyewitness guide to NYC 2014

I took a look at a copy of the updated New York City guide. The series re-launch features updated itineraries ranging from two to fourteen days, new content, stunning images and improved usability with the same integrity DK guides are known and loved for. The guidebooks come with pull-out, waterproof (such a good idea!) maps. Other key features include:

  • New itineraries based on lengths of stay, regional destinations, or themes
  • City guides with tailor-made day trip and weekend itineraries
  • Country guide itineraries ranging from two to fourteen days
  • Brand-new hotel and restaurant listings
  • DK Choice listings highlighting special recommendations for dining and accommodations
  • Simplified price and cuisine categories, with photography throughout
  • Redrawn maps for improved readability
  • Restaurants plotted on maps and listed with adjacent sights – this is obviously the best feature! 😉 
  • More detailed street maps, with subway stops and viewing points


The New York Times said of these guidebooks, “Each book is a visual, as well as informational, feast.” After that strong endorsement, I knew I needed to take a look for myself. I have never been a big guidebook user, since I get all my information online or usually travel with someone who has all the guidebooks and did all the research  (Zan or my mom). There is just so, so much to do in NYC that one could probably come here with no plans at all and still have a great time and figure out a lot to do, but to plan a trip, this guidebook would be extremely useful; in fact, especially since there is so much to do, a good guidebook can help travelers get organized and feel less overwhelmed.

As a New Yorker (I’ve only lived here for two years but I was born here and lived in Brooklyn until I was two; that has to count for something!) I was most curious to take a look at the NYC book, since I know the city well enough to judge it. The front and back inside covers provide the standard subway map, which is crucial for any trip to NYC, as well as a “New York City by Area” map, which is still useful to me after living here for two years (knowing where Chelsea turns into Greenwich Village, for example, is just the kind of trivial detail I can never remember).

The book is organized well, and includes an introduction, a history, a guide to the Manhattan skyline (with illustrations – I love that!) and a “through the year” guide, which would be useful to decide when to visit. The rest of the book is organized by area, and then by activity (where to stay, eat, drink, shop etc.). There are seven detailed, guided walks, which is great for NYC, such a walkable city. I love the detailed museum guides (see above image). At the end, all the practical information is included in the “survival guide,” such as how to travel, maps, a street finder, the Index, etc. Of course, the first thing I looked for in the Index was “Astoria,” and I was chagrined to find it missing. However, flipping through I was excited to see my favorite store from my childhood visits to the city, Spacekiddets. Next I searched for “Queens,” which alas, is only given one and a half pages in the book, in the “Farther Afield” section. But to be fair, most visitors to NYC come to see Manhattan, not the outer boroughs.

The book made me realize how much of NYC I have yet to see and experience. Whoever wins the 4-pack of guidebooks will be very lucky and hopefully totally inspired to start packing! Or, even to just go out and see more of their hometown, if that should be one of these four locations. GOOD LUCK! 

11 replies
  1. Stuart Alan
    Stuart Alan says:

    I have visited New York City many times, spent two weeks touring Italy and a total of four hours in Heathrow during various layovers. That being said, I would very much like to explore London…and plan to do so the next time the chance for a trip comes up!


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