See London With Fresh Eyes

0803_eyesopenlondon0803_eyesopenlondon

Debuting this month, Ideo Eyes Open is a guidebook series that dispenses with the trappings of the standard city guide. Its New York City edition, for instance, doesn't have a subway map or info on the city's most famous museums. Similarly, its London edition points you to the city's hottest cupcake shop rather than Big Ben.

What the guidebooks do offer is plenty of captioned photos of spots where you rub shoulders with locals, not tourists. These photos are cross-indexed by theme and activity, somewhat like a children's Choose Your Own Adventure book. You're encouraged to flip back and forth through different pages, discovering boutique shops, foodie havens, and similar venues.

The Ideo guidebooks will amuse some travelers but may irritate others. The only way to find out how you'll react is to take a peek for yourself. We've collected a bunch of images and tips from the London edition in this slide show.

Images courtesy of Ideo Eyes Open: London by Fred Dust and Ideo (Chronicle Books), recently $16 at Amazon.com.

Related Content