While squarely in the same class of travel guidebooks as Lonely Planet Tibet and Footprint Tibet , The Tibet Guide is not simply another iteration of same topics that have been covered elsewhere in depth. Unlike Lonely Planet (and Footprint to some extent), The Tibet Guide is less interested in the logistics of travel (i.e. hotel names, restaurants, taxi fares—although some of that information is provided) than in the history and cultural significance of places. In a sense, The Tibet Guide gives you an account of the same details a monk or local expert might give you about a place, answering questions any might have like “what is this (building, statue, etc)?”, “what is it called?”, “why is it important?”. As the author says (p4), the main intent of the book is to comprehensively describe and explain “what [travelers] will see when they are there.” In this regard, this book would appeal to anyone keen on understanding a place in its cultural, religious, and political context, especially if he/she lacks a tour guide of his or her own.
The book is separated into five sections: Parts 1-4 provide histories, travel details, and descriptions of sites in Central and Western Tibet; Part 5 provides general advice and details about traveling to Tibet and some of the logistics involved. The beginning of the book provides a short history of Tibet and explanation of Tibetan Buddhism.(Zach Rowinski 2008-2-1)