National Grographic Traveler Rome is a wonderful book to add to your collection of guide books when touring Rome. It has more than 160 fabulous, clear, vivid pictures (which you would expect from National Geographic). It contains 21 full-color maps. It has information on recommended hotels, restaurants, shops, transportation, and tourist attractions.
It contains color coded tabs for each of the different sections of Rome, which makes looking things up a snap. With each attraction it lists which bus routes (and subway routes) to take, and where it is located on the map.
It includes a detailed section on the history and culture of Rome, so that when you arrive you have a little background information.
At the end of the guide book it has a detailed index for quick reference, a language quide of useful words and phrases, a "menu reader" to help you be able to decifer what is listed on the menu, and a section on entertainment venues available.
What I think distinguishes this fromother guide book series is that is has the quality photography of National Geographic along with a well researched historical background for each area of Rome.
This book is to be savored, not just scanned. I would not recommend purchasing this right before you depart on vaction. I would recommend purchasing this well in advance.