When Maureen and Tony Wheeler arrived in Sydney the day after Christmas 1972, after a six month Asia overland trip from Europe, they had 27 cents left between them. In late 1973 they started Lonely Planet Publications to publish Across Asia on the Cheap, the story of their trip from London to Australia.
From those early guidebooks Lonely Planet Publications has grown to become the world's largest independent guidebook publisher with more than 500 titles in print, over 400 staff and offices in London and Oakland as well as the head office in Melbourne. In 2010 they sold a majority interest in Lonely Planet to BBC-Worldwide but are still closely involved with the company and regularly travel to check out their books and other travel products, investigate new travel possibilities or simply to experience something new. Lonely Planet is a global phenomenon and a fascinating story of business, life and travel.