Simon's Reviews > The Smell of the Continent

The Smell of the Continent by Richard Mullen
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's review
Mar 06, 10

bookshelves: non-fiction
Read in March, 2010

Lots of fascinating and amusing information in this history of Victorian tourism (or, more accurately, how the Victorians invented tourism). Some chapters are a little dry and seem to be simply a list of facts, statistics and quotes, but others are a bit more lively and "human". I learnt a lot, like how there was a pre-Euro experiment with European monetary union, the fact that Brits didn't used to need passports but the French needed them even to travel within France, and how people had to deal with the lack of sanitary facilities in French hotels. Plus there are lots of amusing snooty comments from the travellers of the time about how dirty and stupid foreigners all were and how abominable their food was.

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