As I sit here writing this, my husband and I are a mere three weeks out from our first trip to England and Scotland. My husband will also soon be visiting Japan for the first time. All of this upcoming travel got me thinking about the many wonderful resources we have at our finger tips. Here are some of my favorites:

  1. Travel books. My go-to books for Europe are from Rick Steve’s. They’ll answer any questions you might have, and one’s that you didn’t even know you had. His website is also overflowing with great information. Lonely Planet also provides top notch travel guides, and they are far reaching to every corner of the globe. Like Rick Steve’s, Lonely Planet also has a fruitful website.
  2. Atlas Obscura. Yes, technically this is a book too, but it isn’t quite the same as other travel guides. I try to visit one attraction from Atlas Obscura on each trip I take. The book and website are both a goldmine of curiosities and hidden gems. Sure, you could go to all the typical touristy spots, but why not sprinkle in some unique fun that is a bit off the beaten path?
  3. TripAdvisor. I LOVE TripAdvisor. You can find everything there: hotels, restaurants, flight, cars, tours, entertainment, and more! It’s all reviewed by other users, so you can make an educated decision when planning your trip. I’m also a fan of the forums. If you can’t find one that already answers your questions, just start a new one. I find the forums especially helpful for itinerary advice.
  4. Travel Blogs. Shameless plug. But seriously, travel blogs are a great resource. You get a real life story and experience from someone who’s been there. You’ll find travel tips, itineraries, favorite attractions, and more. And if you still have questions, leave a comment and ask.
  5. Friends and family. And last but not least, some of the best recommendations I’ve gotten for hotels and restaurants have been from people I know who have already been to my destination. People really love to talk about their vacations. You won’t have to twist their arm to get their suggestions, and you can learn from their mistakes. Trust me, use this resource.

Do you have any favorite travel planning resources? I’d love to hear about them! Leave a comment!