What bloggers are saying about the new Marco Polo Pocket Guides

We launched our new series of Marco Polo Pocket Guides in 2018 and it has been wonderful seeing the positive response to the new updated guides. Here is a sampling from our favourite (travel) bloggers and what they are saying about the new Pocket Guides:

Jam and Clotted Cream

Devon and Cornwall guide:  “What I like about the guide –
It’s very family focused, containing lots of useful hints and tips on things to do with children. The ‘Great Places for Free’ section of the guide gave me some new idea’s for free days out and free activities to try – always handy as 3 children can equal a lot of money!

The guide contains a large pull out map as well as several road maps in the back of the guide, making orientation easy.

As a food blogger I’m always drawn to food and drink elements of guidebooks. Marco Polo didn’t let me down, with a comprehensive section on ‘local delicacies’ including stargazy pie, pasties and of course the famous cream tea – jam first obviously! Throughout the guide there are also insider tips on lovely cafe’s and restaurants to try. I love the fact they picked up on Woods Cafe in Cardinham Woods. They sell the most amazing homemade cakes…and pulled pork rolls too. Another one of our favourite family days out.” Read the full post here: jamandclottedcream.co.uk


Photo credit: sarahfunky.com

New York guide: “While traveling the world, I always used Marco Polo guide books in all destinations. I’m pretty much obsessed with them! If you’ve never been to NYC, I recommend picking up a Marco Polo guidebook before you arrive. In addition to good suggestions on entertainment, food & drink, shopping, and sightseeing, they also come with a great interactive app, and a pull out map. Plus, the photography in the book is stunning!” Read the full post here: sarahfunky.com

The Wandering Quinn

Photo credit: thewanderingquinn.com

Rome guide: “…after 2 days of seeing the sights, both on my own and on a tour I felt like I needed to see a side of Rome that wasn’t so touristy. I wanted to get under the skin of Rome a bit more, so on my last day I visited Trastevere and with the help of the New Marco Polo Rome Guide I explored a greener and quieter side of Rome which included Trastevere, Gianicolo Hill and the River Tiber. Despite the rain (apologies in advance for the grey photos), I had such a good time and I’m so glad that I ventured over the river into this area of Rome. — I found the New Marco Polo Rome Guide really helpful and are a few other short walks in there too that I would definitely do if I go back to Rome, plus its filled with information!” Read the full post here: thewanderingquinn.com

Sophie Cliff

Photo credit: sophiecliff.com

Barcelona guide: “Sam and I both remarked that it was really good fun to “get lost with a purpose” and that’s exactly how following this discovery tour felt – there was no marching from one location to the next, instead we got to take each destination at our own pace and amble around some areas of the city that were totally new to us.

Each of the new Marco Polo pocket guides come with 4-5 perfectly tailored discovery tours that help you get off the beaten track, and I think they may be my new favourite way to discover a different side to a city. We’re already trying to decide which one we might follow when we visit New York later in the year!” Read the full post here: sophiecliff.com

Hand Luggage Only

Photo credit: handluggageonly.co.uk

Malta & Gozo guide: “A few weeks ago, the gang at Marco Polo Guides asked if we wanted to try scouting out some of their tips on our next trip (which piqued my interest straight away). Using their Malta and Gozo guide we decided to search for some of the ‘insider tips’ on the best things to do in Malta.

Suffice to say, I’m a real sucker for insider tips… Essentially, anything that means I get to make the most of my time on the islands (like those insider tips featuring some of the lesser-known spots in Malta and Gozo) is an opportunity I’ll always jump at while travelling.

After a little bedtime reading of the guide, I found a heap of recommendations that actually ended up saving my bacon on a few occasions. The tips on parking rules (i.e. how no parking or no stopping isn’t really shown with signs but instead with just the lines on the floor – which is totally different to back home in the UK) really helped and saved me a whole lot of unnecessary spend.” Read the full post here: handluggageonly.co.uk


Photo credit: cornishbirdblog.com

Devon and Cornwall guide: “There were no surprises for me, the guide includes everything that you would expect (speaking from a Cornish perspective), you’ll find all the most popular, picturesque and must see places but I was delighted to find some added extras too.

I particularly liked the Discovery Tours section towards the back of the book, this can be used as is or with the Free Touring App. These tailored routes help you to explore the region by guiding you from one awesome destination to the next. They also include details on cost and how long it should all take you. Some of the routes last a couple of weeks others are just a fun packed day trip.” Read the full post here: cornishbirdblog.com

Find our full range of guide books and maps here on Amazon.

What is your favourite Marco Polo travel guide?

Something to say? Leave a comment below, tweet us @MarcoPoloGuides or tell us on Facebook.

Marco Polo’s Top 5 Romantic Destinations + GIVEAWAY

Happy Valentine’s Day! Today is all about the big romantic gestures, and what better way to show your love than by taking your significant other on a romantic getaway. We at Marco Polo have decided to share our top 5 romantic destinations with you and to spread the love, we are also giving away a set of 5 Marco Polo Pocket Guides:


Amsterdam may not seem like a romantic destination, but there is a lot of love in this Dutch city. A stroll down the canals, hand in hand with your love, while the locals cycle by, also often hand in hand. Or take a canal cruise and snuggle on the boat while you take in the beautiful 17th century sights.

Oh, and don’t forget to treat your love to a bunch of tulips at the Bloemenmarkt!


Bali is without a doubt a romantic getaway destination: the beaches, the views, the sunsets, what more could you ask for? The island is a perfect couple’s paradise! For those wishing to splurge, check out the AYANA Resort and Spa in Jimbaran for first class luxury! For those looking for luxury on a budget, this can still be found at Keraton Jimbaran Beach Resort with its own private beach!

While you’re on the island be sure to check out Sanur for its relaxed vibe, Ubud’s rice paddies and in the north: Lovina to do some dolphin watching!

Venice Marco Polo Guide


The canals, the gondolas, the gorgeous historical buildings – Venice is full of romance! It has been the setting of many a love story, and one of the most famous ones is the tragic love story between a fisherman and a mermaid. All that is left of their love is a stone heart that is said to bring eternal love to those who touch it, so make sure to take your own love there.

For the best view of Venice, check out Ponte dell’Academia, also known for the many love locks attached to it. Just don’t leave yours there, the locals will not appreciate the damage done to the historical bridge.

Photo credit: Tim Kelly


The beautiful Lake Garda, with mountains in the distance, makes for a stunning scene for the couples seeking an active vacation. Visit the historical harbour of Sirmione, go hiking in the nearby mountains and end your day in one of the area’s excellent Italian restaurants, or watch the sun set into the lake on the beach.


With all the romantic comedies set in New York, it would be hard to argue why New York does not belong on this list. It is the perfect urban setting for your very own love story. Exchange kisses on the top of the Empire State Building, take a stroll in Central Park and re-enact your favourite romantic movie scene in the city that never sleeps.



To spread the love, Marco Polo is organising a giveaway! We are giving away a set of 5 Marco Polo Pocket guides to one lucky winner, chosen at random.

How to enter?

Simply share the story of your most romantic travel moment or your favourite romantic destination in the comments below. You can earn more win-chances by liking our Facebook page and by following our Twitter and Instagram and by letting us know in your comment that you have done so.

The competition is open from Wednesday 14 February 2018 until Tuesday 20 February 2018 at 12.00 GMT. We will contact the winner personally via email using the email address used to leave the comment so make sure to check that it is spelled correctly!

Good luck! 

Terms and Conditions:

  1. The promotion is open to UK and EU residents aged 18 or over, excluding employees and their immediate families of Marco Polo, its agents or anyone professionally connected with the promotion.
  2. To enter, simply comment on the blog post. Additional win-chances may be acquired by liking the Marco Polo Facebook page and by following the Marco Polo Twitter and Instagram accounts. If the entrant has done any of the mentioned actions, it should be stated in the comment.
  3. This competition will commence on 14 February 2018 and all entries must be received by 12.00 GMT on 20 Febryary 2018. The Promoter accepts no responsibility for any entries that are incomplete, posted late, misdirected, and incorrect, garbled or fail to reach the Promoter by the closing date for any reason. Entries via agents or third parties are invalid.
  4. No purchase necessary, however internet access is required.
  5. The Prizes: 1 x prize winner will receive 5 x Marco Polo Pocket Guides: (£7.99 each).
  6. The prize must be taken as stated and no compensation will be payable if a winner is unable to use the prize as stated. The winner will be liable for all costs and expenses not stated relating to claiming or partaking of the prize.
  7. The promoter may substitute the prize for a prize of an equal or greater value if, for any reason the original item is unavailable.
  8. By entering, winners agree that if they win they will participate in any reasonable publicity arranged by The Promoter or its agencies.
  9. By entering the promotion entrants confirm that they have read and agree to be bound by these terms & conditions and by the decisions of the Promoter, which are final in all matters relating to the promotion. Failure to do so will result in the forfeiture of the prize. No correspondence will be entered into.
  10. The Promoter or its agencies accept no responsibility for any loss or damage suffered through acceptance of the prize.
  11. The Promoter or its agencies will not be responsible for the non-inclusion of entries as a result of technical failures or otherwise, including any such failure which is within the control of The Promoter or its agencies. Proof of submission of entry is not proof of receipt of entry.
  12. The Promoter reserves the right at its sole discretion to disqualify any person it finds to be tampering or to have tampered with the operation of the promotion or the Marco Polo website, or to be acting in violation of these terms and conditions.
  13. To the full extent permitted by law the Promoter will not accept liability for any loss, damage, injury or death arising from this promotion beyond its reasonable control.

The Promoter is Marco Polo Travel Publishing, Pinewood, Chineham Business Park, Crockford Lane, Chineham, Basingstoke, RG24 8AL

Marco Polo Pocket Guide relaunch

Calling all trailblazers! Marco Polo has never been one to follow the crowd: since we burst onto the scene in 2012 and turned the travel publishing world upside-down, we have been pursuing a quest to create the best travel guide possible ever since! And now we are launching 30 ground-breaking new look pocket guides for 2018!


Along with all the regular content updates you’d expect from a relaunch – the guides also contain a new Discovery Tours chapter:

• Each book has 4 to 5 exciting, specially tailored tours helping readers get behind the scenes and head off the beaten track.
• The perfect planning tool – each tour has an overview box detailing the start and end points, distance, plus timing and costs involved – all the information an explorer needs at a glance!
• Each tour is plotted on an overview map highlighting the start point and final destination for easy orientation.
• A detailed flow chart with pictograms clearly shows the way – including distance indicators, sights to explore, views to enjoy en route and plenty of Insider Tips for
relaxing stops along the way.


Free touring app! The Discovery Tours are also available as an app – simply download any of the tours from the web link / QR code featured in each guide. The ultimate navigational tool to enjoy stress-free sightseeing.


Ground-breaking new look covers bring the guides bang up-to-date, so you won’t need to be shy about looking like a tourist! Fresh, simple, cool – the split line typography is designed to make you look twice and the bright colours will get you in the holiday mood!


The guides with Insider Tips! Showing the main sights in detail simply isn’t enough for modern-day travellers. Marco Polo specialises in getting you off the beaten track! Why follow the crowd when you can make your own path?


Relaunch titles available Jan 2018: Amsterdam, Bali, Barcelona, Cambodia, Cape Verde, Corfu, Costa Brava, French Riviera, Hong Kong, India South, Italy, Lake Garda, Mallorca, Malta & Gozo, Mauritius, Montenegro, Munich, New York, New Zealand, Rome, Sardinia, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Tenerife, Venice, Vienna.

Plus 4 brand new titles: Japan, Peru & Bolivia, Salzburg & Surroundings, Santorini.
All priced at £7.99.


Let Marco Polo show you hidden gems, lesser-known locations and stunning viewpoints where you can make memories to last a lifetime. Brush shoulders with the locals, eat the food that Grandma makes and seek out unique experiences at every turn.

Be a traveller, not just a tourist!

Something to say? Leave a comment below, tweet us @MarcoPoloGuides or tell us on Facebook.

Marco Polo’s 24 Holiday traditions from around the world – Day 12: Hanukkah in New York

It’s Day 12 of our Advent Calendar and it’s also December 12th, the first night of Hanukkah. We are headed to New York, to find out how the big Apple celebrates the Festival of Lights. Did you miss yesterday’s post? Check it out here!

8m by Chabad.org, on Flickr
8m” (CC BY 2.0) by Chabad.org



So far most of our Holiday traditions have revolved around Christmas, but it would be remiss of us to ignore the other big celebration of the Holiday season, Hanukkah, also known as the Festival of Lights. From the evening of December 12th, until the evening of December 20th, Jewish people around the world get together with their families and friends to light the candles of the hanukkiah, the Hanukkah menorah. New York has a large Jewish community, and among all the pre-Christmas parties, there are also lavish Hanukkah celebrations to be found.

On the Upper East Side, on the 59th Street and Fifth Avenue, the world’s largest Hanukkah menorah is lit every evening of the Hanukkah, around 5:30 PM (see image above, from last year). In other parts of New York there are also large public Hanukkah menorah lighting ceremonies, though the one in Brooklyn is known as ‘the Largest’ (not to be confused with the world’s largest on Upper East Side). ‘The Largest Hanukkah’ menorah lighting ceremony also hosts a free concert on the first night of Hanukkah and there are also hot latkes and presents for children.

Even if you are not Jewish, it is the perfect time to learn more about the Jewish traditions, as many museums in New York, such as the Children’s Museum of Manhattan, have special exhibits on the topic. At the Children’s Museum of Manhattan, children – and parents – can learn all about the dreidel.

Buy the Marco Polo New York Spiral Guide

Marco Polo New York Spiral Guide

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Low Budget New York

Want to visit New York but can’t flash the cash? Here are Marco Polo’s top tips to get the best out of the Big Apple without spending a wedge:

 New York Marco Polo Guide

Free museum admission

Entry to The Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) is free every Friday afternoon. The museum’s collection of contemporary art is phenomenal and its special exhibitions are outstanding. Many regard the museum as the world’s best because it gives the visitor a conclusive overview of 20th century art thanks to masterpieces such as Henri Matisse’s Dance, Vincent Van Gogh’s Starry Night, Frida Kahlo’s Self-Portrait with Cropped Hair and Pablo Picasso’s Les Demoiselles d’Avignon.

Opening times: Sat–Mon, Wed, Thu 10.30am–5.30pm, Fri 10.30am–6pm | 11 W 53rd St | Between 5th Ave and 6th Ave | Entrance free Fri 4pm–8pm otherwise $20 entrance fee | www.moma.org | Subway: 47th–50th St, B, D, F, M

The ferry not to be missed

Perhaps the most inexpensive experience you can have in New York is the round trip on the Staten Island Ferry. When it pulls away from the shore you get to see the full sweep of the Manhattan skyline from the Statue of Liberty, Ellis Island and on to New Jersey – all for free. On the other side of the ferry the view is of Brooklyn, New York City’s biggest borough.

Every 30 minutes during the day (every 15 minutes in rush hour), hourly 11.30pm–6.30am | South St/State St | Subway: South Ferry, 1 (only the first five front carriages of the train.)

Dining on a budget

City Bakery: vegetarian buffet with some innovative flavour combinations. Daily 7.30am–7pm | 3 W 18th St | Tel. 1212 3 66 14 14 | www.thecitybakery.com | Subway: 14th St–Union Square, L, N, Q, R, 4–6

Degustation: Tapas at reasonable prices. Mon–Sat evenings only | 239 E 5th St | Tel. 1212 979 10 12 | www.degustation-nyc.com | Subway: Astor Place, 6, 2nd Ave, F, M

Schnitzel & things:  This mobile food truck with its mustard coloured logo parks in a different New York street every day! For its sumptuous deepfried cod, chicken and pork chops track it down at www.schnitzelandthings.com or on Twitter. Mon-Fri between 11.30am and 2pm | Tel. 1347 7 72 73 41

Tai Thai: Authentic Thai food at Bangkok prices! 78 E 1st St | Tel. 1212 7 77 25 52 | www.taithainewyork.com | Subway: 2nd Ave, F, M

Free Concerts and Exhibitions

An excellent repertoire of jazz, world and eastern European music is on offer on the tiny stage at Barbes jazz club and bar in Brooklyn’s Park Slope – admission is free. Excellent live music, good acoustics and an eclectic mix of patrons of all ages have elevated this small gem in an excellent location in Brooklyn to cult status. 376 9th St (6th Ave) | Tel. 1347 422 02 48 | www.barbesbrooklyn.com | Subway: 7th Ave, F, G

World Financial Center – This complex of buildings on the southernmost tip of Manhattan across from Wall Street comprises office blocks, shops, apartments (Battery Park City), an imposing conservatory (Winter Garden), yacht harbour and green areas. The Winter Garden has a variety of restaurants and shops not to mention free concerts and exhibitions. Information: ‘events calendar’ of www.worldfinancialcenter.com | West St | Between Vesey St and Liberty St | Subway: Chambers St, A, C, J, M, Z, 1, 2, 3

Free tour guides

Big Apple Greeters are enthusiastic New Yorkers who volunteer to show tourists their city in their spare time – free of charge. These very personal tours through Manhattan or Brooklyn are very popular and it is a good idea to book well in advance. Tel. 1 212 6 69 81 59 | www.bigapplegreeter.org

Free Newspaper

The free weekly newspaper the Village Voice is the city’s events calendar with comprehensive arts and culture listings. Look out for the red boxes at the side of the street and in some cafés. www.villagevoice.com

Keep fit!

Even though you find yourself in the concrete jungle you can still keep fit – just remember to pack your trainers! Jogging around the reservoir running track in Central Park or through Prospect Park in Brooklyn is an experience in itself. There is also the new Hudson River Park located on Manhattan’s West Side where you can either jog, cycle or rollerblade along the waterfront all the way from the southernmost point to far north of the island. In summer you can swim for free in the municipal pools in Brooklyn, Queens and Manhattan (www.nycgovparks.org/facilities/pools) and in winter you can go ice skating in Central and Bryant Parks and at the Rockefeller Center. Many of the parks offer free t’ai chi and yoga courses in summer. www.bryantpark.org


» Read more about New York

New York Marco Polo Guide

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