Developer: Dorling Kindersley
Price: $6.99
Version Reviewed: 1.1
Device Reviewed On: iPhone

iPhone Integration Rating: ★★★★☆
User Interface Rating: ★★★★☆
Re-use Value Rating: ★★★½☆

Overall Rating: ★★★★☆

Travel guide publisher DK has over the years released several digital travel guides on iOS for famous and popular travel destinations, including New York, London and Paris. Its latest addition to its collection of digital guides is now available on the App Store and covers San Francisco, CA.

San Francisco: DK Top 10 is a travel guide built around dozens of top 10 lists, covering the city’s best restaurants, hotels, shops and things to do. The introductory screen itself breaks down the San Francisco experience into categories like San Francisco Highlights, Things to See & Do, Area by Area and Practicalities. When you click on any of these, you’ll discover top 10 lists pertaining to that category. For instance, under San Francisco Highlights, you’ll find a tour of the city’s highlights, providing information on iconic destinations, such as the Golden Gate Bridge, Fisherman’s Warf, Alcatraz, Chinatown and more. Click on any of these, and you’ll find a top 10 lists with information covering that location. There are also top 10 lists that break down the city’s best dining, hotels and many other categories.

In addition to the top 10 lists, you can search on the map screen for nearby options. When you click on a venue, you’ll be provided with the phone number, address and some pricing information. You’re able to search for hotels, music, shopping, restaurants and day trips, and can then pull up the location on Google Maps to get directions or use GPS.

If you’re one of those undecided travelers who can’t figure out what you want to do, there’s the useful “Inspire Me” feature, which randomly suggests something for you to do based on what category you choose. And with the Favorites option, you can keep track of everything you like, for future use.

This is an impressive app, but it does have some areas that could do with improvement. Many of the hotels and restaurants, for instance, lack pricing information, which is inconvenient. Further, there’s no legend for the map’s icons, making the process of learning the map more complicated than it should be.

These issues aside, San Francisco: DK Top 10 is an impressive resource and tool for anyone planning to visit San Francisco. I wish I had something like this the first couple of times I traveled to the city. In fact, next time I do, I’ll certainly make use of the app.

Posted in: iPhone Apps and Games, Reviews, Travel

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