Lonely Planet has been helping travellers to discover incredible experiences across the globe since 1973. We started out providing independently researched recommendations and advice in book format, and since then have broadened how we share our writers’ travel expertise to web, mobile, magazines, video and beyond. We’ve now entered the world of voice technology with Amazon Alexa and the Google Assistant.

So how can we help you with your travel plans using voice technology? Firstly, we can tell you the very best place to be today, every day.

Here’s an example for March 26th:

One of the most beautiful natural…


Lonely Planet is a 45-year-old start-up. In 1973, we took a simple idea and embraced a content platform: providing travellers with information was the goal and books were the best medium. This was cutting-edge stuff at the time – and experimentation and early adoption have defined the company ever since.

In this post, we reflect on the evolution of technology at Lonely Planet and the ways we’ve adapted our content for emerging platforms over the years. Some of those experiments were successes, others failures. Here are some of the lessons we’ve learnt from taking risks along the way.

The 70s


At Lonely Planet, we love finding ways to help people explore the world every day. In fact, it’s our mission. And our brand new mobile app helps you do just that. Meet Trips by Lonely Planet — now available for iOS on the App Store.

By Brad Haynes

We’ve always been incredibly proud of Lonely Planet’s community of travelers. Just dip into our Thorn Tree Forum — now 21 years young — to see why. From cross-continent drives to eco-friendly volunteering, family travel to city trips, Lonely Planet’s travel community are sharing fascinating, wanderlust-inducing stories on a daily basis.

These shared experiences can be extremely useful for other travelers: they help others understand how accessible certain places are and learn about different people and cultures — and they encourage everyone to celebrate our wonderfully diverse planet.

We wanted to create another way to navigate and…


As Lonely Planet’s Thorn Tree forum reaches its 21st birthday, we look back at its evolution.

By Katie Coyne

While 1996 isn’t that long ago, a lot has changed. People still wrote handwritten letters and sent them through the post. You still had to go to the shops to buy your stuff (Amazon and eBay had launched just the year before). Google had only just been created at Stanford University. And Facebook wasn’t even a glimmer in Mark Zuckerberg’s eye.

If this were on the TV rather than on Medium, we’d probably be putting in some grainy, oddly tinted footage right now of then world chess champion Garry Kasparov battling it out with IBM supercomputer Deep…


Twelve months on from launching our flagship app

by Diego Jiménez

Travel and technology have evolved so much since Lonely Planet’s founders, Tony and Maureen Wheeler, put together their first guidebook with a typewriter on their kitchen table over forty years ago. But Lonely Planet’s mission remains the same: to inspire and enable travellers to experience the world.

Exactly one year ago today we released Guides, our flagship mobile app, as a reliable tool for travellers to get to the heart of a destination. We built an app from the ground up with the real needs of our travel community in mind. Something simple and useful. …


***Update 17 December 2018: This product has now been retired.***

The slow but steady rise in popularity of wearables has captured the imaginations of our digital product team over the past year. In particular, the ways in which this sort of technology–especially within the watch space–can genuinely aid travellers.

For this reason, we recently teamed up with Samsung (as part of our larger Best in Travel campaign) to develop a companion version of our quickly evolving Guides app for their latest Gear S3 smartwatch.

Guides is Lonely Planet’s flagship app, which focuses on providing city content for travellers ‘on the…


As a bit of a side project, one of our Digital Product team members, Jonathan Creamer, recently built out this simple but beautiful Chrome extension.

It surfaces some of the quality imagery we’ve sourced from 500px for our site’s new destination pages, and also offers a shortcut for finding out about places around around the globe, straight from your Omnibox.


by Brad Haynes

If you’ve traveled the world, there is a good chance you’ve used a Lonely Planet guidebook on your adventures. Founded in Melbourne in 1973, the company has grown up to become the world’s leading travel publisher, building a global network of writers, selling millions of books covering almost every destination on the planet, and providing fresh content to more than 120 million people every year across its different platforms.

Now, Lonely Planet is taking huge strides to reinvent its online offering. This is just the beginning of that journey.

Continent and country pages

It all begins with radically improved experiences for…

Lonely Planet

A glimpse into the digital products and creative ideas that power Lonely Planet. And perhaps the odd travel tale.

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