ACCESS Travel Guides

  • ACCESS Travel Guides
  • ACCESS travel guides, 1980. Art director: Richard Saul Wurman. Published by Acess Press. Photo: Reven Wurman
  • Rome ACCESS 
    In 1980, Wurman moved to Los Angeles and couldn’t find his way around. Existing guidebooks of the time didn’t help. He decided to make his own guidebook and began the ACCESS series, eventually covering nearly 30 cities, including Rome. The differentiating factor of his guidebook, and the subsequent influence it had on the guidebook industry, was that the primary organization was by location as opposed to category. Each entry was next to another as it would be in a word map of the city. Instead of a chapter on hotels, or a chapter on restaurants, museums, etc. It answered the simple question: “Where am I and what’s around me?” They were successful.
  • Tokyo rapid-transit map, Yamanote and Chuo Lines, from Tokyo ACCESS, 1984. Published by Access Press. Photo: Richard Saul Wurman
  • Tokyo Subway Map
    Tokyo ACCESS shows the railway line encircling the city. The route looks quite abstract when compared with the map of its real path. But, it clarifies the fact that the route is essentially a circle around the city, making it easier to understand and remember. The actual route is pear-shaped, with a bump on the bottom twisting to the right. Since you can’t get on and off the train between stops, it doesn’t matter that the what twists the train route takes. What does matter is the essential path and the sequence of stops, with reference to a familiar place – the
    Imperial Palace.
  • Excerpt from Olympic ACCESS guide, 1983. Director: Richard Saul Wurman; Illustrator: Michael Everitt. Publushed by Access Press. Photo: Richard Saul Wurman
  • Olympic ACCESS Guide

    The Olympic ACCESS Guide came about when Wurman realized that the Olympic games were coming, and most people didn't understand how most of the sports were played or scored.