Between the spate of warm weather we've been enjoying here in Philadelphia to the realization that summer really isn't that far away, I've been doing a good bit of mental vacation planning. Call it daydreaming if you must; I, however, prefer to be prepared should any number of spur-of-the-moment trips arise. (Note: This has not actually happened yet.) Whether you're planning a real vacation or just a mental one, the Free Library has plenty of resources to help you escape to your dream location of choice!
For starters, the Library boasts a comprehensive collection of up-do-date guidebooks for thousands of locations worldwide. No need to purchase (and lug around) several weighty tomes: Skim the guidebooks in our collection about your chosen destination and then cull the best advice from each! And for those looking for a more lyric portrait of potential travel locales, the Library also has a great collection of travel-inspired literature. (I recommend escaping to Morocco with Paul Bowles or trekking across Australia with Bill Bryson.) Plus, our growing ebook collection features hundreds of travel guides, and--best of all--you don't have to wait in line to check them out.
In order to be fully prepared for that spur-of-the-moment jaunt to Paris or Phuket, our fantastic Mango Languages resource is absolutely essential. Whether you're interested in becoming fluent in another tongue or just want to pick up a few handy phrases, Mango Languages is incredibly easy to use and quite comprehensive in the depth and breadth of languages and lessons it offers. (Check out a more comprehensive review of the Mango Languages program here.)
If it's a road trip you're planning, don't forget about our extensive Map Collection at Parkway Central Library. Google Maps is great, but sometimes it's easiest to plot out the best routes for a big trip when you can spread a bunch of paper maps out in front of you and soak in the "big picture." You can read more about our Map Collection in the Fall 2011 edition of our Hidden Gems publication.
And if your dreams are international but your budget is local, the Free Library can help you plan a great staycation, too. Why not view the City of Brotherly Love from a new angle? Check out our digitial collection of historic Philadelphia images courtesy of our Print and Picture Collection and then visit those same locales circa 2012!
Happy (mental) travels!