If you like seeing the sights on foot but hate loading yourself down with guidebooks, Google Maps has come out with a “walking” option. You can search for directions between two points and get directions for traveling on foot.
What’s hot: Besides the directions, you can personalize your map. Go to the “My Maps” section, click “Browse the directory” of interactive content, and select from many pages of features to add to your map, including weather reports, hotel locations and webcams. I mapped some walking routes in London and added the Underground and above-ground map (with tours) and places of interest such as banks and coffeehouses. My favorites: The Londonist’s Back Passages tool gave off-the-beaten path suggestions and commentary, and Flicker Maplet had area-specific photos to go with the map. You can save your newly customized map, print it or e-mail it to yourself and travel partners for future use.
What’s not: This feature is still in beta so it may not be compatible with every walk around the world. You might also find the caveat “Use caution -- this route may be missing sidewalks or pedestrian paths.”
-- Jen Leo