Summary and Info
I am most familiar with Frommer's travel guides that focus on cities or regions. However, this series also features other guides on a variety of subjects. The focus here? ". . .places to see before they disappear." That is, on endangered destinations, whether they be animals (e.g., condors) or places (e.g., the Hill of Tara in Ireland) or human artifacts (e.g., Battersea Power Station in London).
Truthfully, the title is something of a misnomer. The two active volcanoes in Hawaii (Kilauea and Mauna Loa) are hardly threatened and represent one of the sites to see "before they disappear." The Grand Canyon is unlikely to disappear, although its environment may degrade. Also, global warming is casually and routinely tossed around as a potential threat to some locations; I am not sure we know enough about the phenomenon yet to place great weight on the effects of warming for specific locations.
There is also hope. Some of the destinations have improved their prospects over time. For instance, condors were once within a blink of disappearing; now, there are many more than once I would have thought possible.
Some threatened venues, to provide a flavor of destinations: Redwoods Forest in California, the Mekong River, Sherwood Forest (England), gorillas of the Bwindi Impenetrable Mountain Forest, the caves of Lascaux (France), the Pyramids of Giza, the Tower of London, Wrigley Field (Chicago), et al.
There are also cool features, such as listings of ten related locations. To illustrate, on pages 416-417, there is a listing of ten lighthouses that are glorious but which face some level of threat.
An interesting volume. I think some of these sites are scarcely in threat; some threats appear to me to be pretty hypothetical. Nonetheless, the work reminds us that some important places face some degree of threat. As part of our legacy, it would be a shame if we lost even a small percentage of these places. So, despite some questions that I have, this is an interesting volume.
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