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The internet, as wonderful as it may be, can often back up the proverbial dump truck and unload such an ungodly, suffocating amount of information upon your noggin that you may find yourself longing for the Dewy Decimal system.

Case in point: before traveling recently for the island of Moorea, I did a quick Google search and came up with a mere 1.8 million hits.

But which one to turn to for advice? It's no secret that web designers invest time and money to ensure that their sites pop up high on Google searches in order to attract your attention and perhaps even separate you from your money. And that's why I don't always trust my local search engine.

Where I do turn to information, however, are forums.

Forums are just that, they allow ordinary people to openly post and honestly discuss whatever is on their mind--something extraordinarily important in the world of travel since other travelers have always been the best source of information on where to go, what to see, and where to eat.

My very favorite travelers' forum is Lonely Planet's Thorn Tree.

Those who post here tend to reflect the Lonely Planet, roll-up-your-sleeves and get off the beaten path travel mentality. And as a result, I tend to find their suggestions and recommendations right up my alley.

The site is organized by regions of the world and also includes a keyword search option. There are also special interest subsections which cover such topics as traveling with kids, women travelers, trekking, traveling with disabilities, learning languages, and responsible travel.

Check it out.

Filed under: Internet Tools

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