Last month Gowalla set out to put its focus back on sharing and discovering new places. It accomplished this by launching Social Guides. Today the location-based service announced that it is expanding its international guides and will soon support Paris and Amsterdam.

Social Guides are a collection of lists featuring photos, highlights, and experiences from friends, locals, and experts. Once published, a user has the option to save a location for the future, or give it some love, which is essentially telling other visitors that he or she recommends that location.

Currently Gowalla’s Social Guides are available in 38 North American cities, including Toronto and Vancouver. Gowalla’s international reach includes European cities, such as Berlin, Copenhagen, London, Oslo, Prague, and Rome. It even stretches into Asia, Australia, and the Middle East with guides available for Bangkok, Dubai, Melbourne, Singapore, Tel Aviv, and Tokyo.

Clicking on a guide will open a page full of pictures from other Gowalla users, hot spots within that city, and featured lists – which highlight the best locations in a particular category.

Social Guides are definitely an interesting and visually appealing way for users to learn about a specific city. The collective approach creates unique experiences for visitors, and businesses – whether local or international – could definitely benefit from the creative presentation.

[Image credit: Kenneth Lu]