Oct 8 12

Create your own Personalised World Map

by MattThomason

Gifts are a staple part of every culture and are an symbol of affection from bearer to receiver. However, it is important to remember that a gift is not just that in itself. It is a demonstration of how well you know someone and understand their personality.

Unlike generic gifts, personalised gifts can last a lifetime and will always hold a special place in someone’s memory. For example, gift cards will get used, coffee mugs can break and tastes will change, where as a personalised world map could occupy wall space for years to come.

Personalised gifts can be given at any special occasion and, contrary to popular belief, they don’t have to be exceedingly expensive. Theclichéphrase “it’s the thought that counts” is what makes the difference when it comes to personalised gifts.

Did you know? Maps International has a range of personalised world maps, personalised postcode maps and much more to excite and impress the people closest to you.

Personalised World Map

Here’s an example of aPersonalised World Map. You can customise the colour of the border as well as the title and sub title. The Personalised World Map would make a perfect birthday gift!

Personalised World Map

Personalised Postcode Map

Here’s an example of aPersonalised Postcode Map. These provide a detailed map of any area in the UK followed by a title and sub title of your choice. The Personalised Postcode Map makes perfect walldécorfor the home!

Personalised Postcode Map

Personalised Postcode Map for Couples

Here’s an example of a Personalised Postcode Map for Couples. Choose two different locations and merge them together followed by a title and subtitle. These areas could be childhood homes, where you first met or favourite destinations.

Personalised Postcode Map for Couples

You can find many more personalised world maps over at Maps International UK or Maps International USA.

Oct 12 12

Old Maps - A Brief History of Cartography

by MattThomason

Old Maps have been part of human history for thousands of years, and are said to date back as early as 16,500 B.C. However, The oldest known maps are preserved on Babylonian clay tablets from about 2300 B.C.

It was not until the early 16th century that the first world maps began to appear, Gerardus Mercator from Belgium was the leading cartographer of the mid-16th century. He developed a mapping projection based on mathematics, which was much more accurate than any other up until that date. He published a map of the world in 1569 based on this projection.

Mercator World Map

Mercator World Map 1569 - Source: wikipedia.org

In light of this, many other map projections were soon developed and in 1570 the first modern atlas was published by Antwerp cartographer Abraham Ortelius.

Ortelius World Map

Ortelius Old World Map 1570 - Source: wikipedia.org

The Nova Orbis Tabula In Lucem Edita is a similar but more ornate version of the Nova Totius Terrarum Orbis Tabula. The latter was published in 1630 and was the first dated map to be published in an atlas.

Nova Orbis Tablula in Lucem Edita

Nova Orbis Tabula in Lucem Edita 1689 Old Map - Source: mapsinternational.co.uk

In 1740, German map publisher Matthias Seutter used the Vertical Perspective projection which placed the map observer at a 12,750km distance. This type of projection is the same as is used today for Google Earth.

In the United States in the 17th and 18th centuries, explorers mapped trails and army engineers surveyed government lands. The old map pictured below was released in 1858, after the US had been thoroughly explored and mapped.

The World on Mecrators Projection

The World on Mecrators Projection 1858 Old Map - Source: mapsinternational.co.uk

Many more accurate projections were developed over the course of the 19th and 20th century. Digital mapping in the late 20th century made old maps like these somewhat obsolete, but they still provide an intriguing insight into the evolution of cartography and can make a timeless addition to the home.

Nov 13 12

Google on Mars

by MattThomason

Many of us will already be aware that we can explore space using the wonders of Google Earth. The ability to roam Mars on Google Earth was something that was introduced in 2009, but images were only available in low resolution.

Now, thanks to Context Camera (CTX) on Nasa’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter we are able to see the red planet in much more detail.

Updated: Updated: The grey patches in this view of Mars from Google show images from the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter's Context Camera which have been freshly loaded into the freely downloadable application

In addition to the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter there are four other active probes on or in orbit around Mars. This includes two orbiters and two rovers. This includes 2001 Mars Odyssey, Mars Express, Opportunity rover, and Curiosity rover.

The Curiosity rover is one of the more advanced probes and has already transmitted some intriguing information back to NASA. Curiosity was set down in the Gale Crater, which Google Earth users can zoom into for a 3D view.


Up until recently the mission controllers overseeing NASA’s Mars Curiosity rover mission had been working in shifts aligned with Martian time for the first 90 Mars days, or Sols, of the mission.

The start of the Sol is always changing relative to Earth time which meant the team’s start time for daily planning had to be moved a few hours later each week.

To view these fantastic images download Google Earth

Click on this icon in Google Earth to view Mars >>>saturn

Nov 20 12

Mapping The Movies

by MattThomason

There is always significant debate when it comes to the best movies of all time. Ratings can be deceptive, critics can be challenged and hype can play a significant part in shaping a social, collective reaction.

Watching a movie can be a rollercoaster ride of emotions, both good and bad and like riding a rollercoaster, the best ones are always the ones we remember for years to come. Many people will label and cast assertions about specific genres.

Many men for example, will judge a romantic film as being a ‘chick flick’ which men may only watch when with a female companion. Similarly, many women will judge an action film as being nothing but ‘explosions’ and ‘fast cars’, things which naturally appeal more to men.

So what happens when genres collide? You get the likes of Avatar producing a cocktail of action and romance, admidst a war torn climate with highlighted themes of greed and corrpution. You get the brilliantly acted Forrest Gump which mixes heartfelt drama with comedic elements, creating an unlikely blend of humour and sadness.

A lot of the best movies do not tie themselves to one genre and allow themselves to reach a larger amount of viewers by incorporating influences from different genres. Obviously, if a movie was to take extracts from every genre then it’s likely that it wouldn’t be very successful, however, in moderation a mix of genres can go a long way in creating a cinematic masterpiece.

Vodkaster.com has attempted to create a visual representation of this phenonemon in the form of a subway map. The concept behind this is that each genre is represented by a subway line, while each movie is represented by a station. The points at which these lines meet is where the film has adopted a position between two genres.

Do you agree that these movies are the best of all time? Do you feel that more of these movies have a cross section of genres? Tell us in the comments.

Nov 28 12

Christmas Gifts Discount - 15% OFF!

by MattThomason

The Christmas season is just around the corner. Up until now, the thought of Christmas may have seemed like a far off event but now we are seeing it in magazines, shopping malls, restaurants and in almost every ambient environment.

It won’t be long before Bill Nighy is gracing our screens in ‘Love Actually’ with his rendition of “Christmas (love) is all around me”. With the Christmas Season comes the prospect of buying Christmas gifts for friends and family and, as is often the case, the difficulty in knowing what to buy.

We’re here to help. We’ve got -15% off everything in our online map shop up until 4th December. That’s right, everything. Here’s a few ideas of Christmas gifts to start you off:

Huge World Map

Our HUGE politcal world map is even bigger than resident map maker Kev and is one of our best sellers (the map, not Kev). This map will make a brilliant Christmas gift for the budding travel enthusiast or Geography obsessive and it’s now just £32.60.

Glow In The Dark Map

Our Glow-In-The-Dark World Map is the perfect Christmas Gift for the kids’ bedroom and will help them learn valuable geography skills. This map is now just £32.60.

Nova Orbis Tablula in Lucem Edita

The Nova Orbis In Lucem Edita is a perfect Christmas gift for the historians amongst us. Its fascinating ornate detail will give a real ‘blast’ from the past! Buy this in our medium size for only £24.65.

Christmas Gifts Discount
Dec 3 12

Life Expectancy World Map

by MattThomason

This colour coded life expectancy world map shows the incredible difference in life expectancy across the globe. It shows that the more economically developed countries such as the UK, Japan and Canada have a higher life expectancy than lower economically developed countries like Angola and Zambia.

Countries like Italy and Sweden have life expectancies of 80+ where as places like Chad and Afghanistan have life expectancies of lower than 50.

The country with the highest life expectancy is the city state of Monaco. It has the Worlds highest number of Billionaires & Millionaires per capita and the Worlds lowest poverty rate, as well as exceptional standards of state funded healthcare.

Of the top 5 countries with the highest life expectancies the only large country is Japan, with the rest being city states like San Marino and Singapore.

On the other end of the spectrum, Chad is one of the poorest countries in the World. 80% of the population of the country are living below the poverty line and as of 2004, it was estimated there were 3 physicians, 15 nurses and 2 midwives per 100,000 people.

Click the image below for a larger view.


Jan 9 13

150 years of The London Underground

by MattThomason

The London Underground is internationally renowned for being the third largest (in terms of route miles) subway system in the world. Today marks 150 years since the first London Underground journey took place between Paddington and Farringdon on the Metropolitan line in 1863.

One of the Tube’s most notable features is the design of it’s network map. It is characterised by a non-geographical layout and the use of colour coding for lines. The map is now considered a design classic; virtually every major urban rail system in the world now has a similar map and many bus companies have also adopted the concept.

Tube map

There are many cultural references to the map, including parodies of it using different station-name. Here are a few of our favourites to celebrate 150 years of the London Underground.

Simple, but effective.


Football Fans

Football London Underground

Local Life Expectancy


Jan 16 13

Mapping dialect and it’s influences

by MattThomason

The origins of language in humans has been a topic of scholary discussion throughout the ages. It has been documented in the Christian bible in the book of Genesis as a ‘confusion of tongues’ and has been deemed by some scholars as unsuitable for serious discussion due to a lack of empirical evidence.

In 1866, the Linguistic Society of Paris went so far as to ban debates on the subject. However, today, there are still many questions left unanswered and a growing number of professionals have attempted to address this mystery with new methods.

French Artist Gustave Doré's interpretation of the confusion of tonguesFrench Artist Gustave Doré’s interpretation of the confusion of tongues

Further questions remain around dialect or accent. Received Pronunciation is considered the standard English accent in England although it is clear that around England and indeed Great Britain the accent can vary vastly. People from the West Country may have trouble understanding someone with a Geordie accent. Similarly, someone with a Cockney accent may have problems understanding someone with a Glaswegian accent. Dialect is usually interpreted geographically and split into certain regions.

Every dialectal feature has its own boundary line, called an isogloss and these features can be attributed to the division of certain dialects and associated with names of geographic regions, for example, Bristolian or Brummie accents.

Dialect also has some relation to a person’s social background. In many localities, dialectal differences are connected with social classes, educational levels, or both.

dialectsDialects from across Great Britain

It’s possible that we may see the diminishing of dialect in the modern era. The ability to communicate with people from around the world with ease may cause isogloss boundaries to blur and accents to become more similar.

On the other hand, it could be argued that despite the ease of communication individuals are no longer communicating vocally. In the 21st century people communicate more via email or by short message services (SMS) as oppossed to actually speaking to one another.

Do you think there is a future for dialect?

Feb 8 13

Top 20 Horse Meat Producers in the World: Map

by Ronnie Hazley

World Map of Horse Meat Producers

World Map of Horse Meat Producers

“Frozen-food company Findus is the latest culprit in a number of cases surrounding the use of horse meat in foods labelled as beef. A series of tests on Findus beef lasagne products found between 60 and 100 percent horse meat. Within the last month millions of burgers have been taken off shop shelves amidst findings of horse DNA. We thought it would be interesting to illustrate the top 20 countries in the world that produce horse meat. You can see from our World Map of Horse Meat Producers that China are by far the biggest producers of horse meat.

Horse meat is widely enjoyed around across much of Europe, South America and East Asia and is a healthier alternative to eating beef due to its lower fat content. So, why does Britain host a social stigma against the consumption of horse meat? It can be traced back to centuries when horses were seen as companions and used as cavalry in times of war. Similarly, today horses are considered as pets in a similar category to that of cats and dogs.

As aforementioned, in many countries consuming horse meat is considered socially acceptable. To further highlight this, we have used data from the Food and Agriculture Organisation tomake a map of all the countries worldwide that produce horse meat.”

Feb 28 13

Map of the World’s Credit Ratings

by MattThomason

We’ve created a Map of the World’s Credit Ratings based on Moody’s Corporation Ratings Data. On 22/02/13 the UK lost it’s AAA credit rating for the first time since 1978. This came as a result of a series of blows to the UK economy and speculation that UK economic growth will remain sluggish over the next few years.

The UK saw it’s rating drop to Aa1, which means it will take a long time for the government to reduce its budget deficit - the amount it has to borrow every year because it is spending more than it receives from tax revenue.


However, Moody’s stated that the UK’s creditworthiness was still “extremely high”. In particular, the UK has a good history of debt control and still has a highly competitive economy. Our Map of the World’s credit ratings provides a visual representation of each country’s credit rating based on Moody’s ratings data.

Map of the World's Credit Ratings

If you’re not sure of some of the country names then use the interactive map of the world’s credit ratings below. Click on a country to find out it’s name.

Mar 19 13

Nuclear Weapon States Map

by MattThomason

The 1930’s was a period of immense change. The great depression caused markets to crash and resulted in economic downfall, whilst Adolf Hitler seized the opportunity to rise to power. Many major conflicts occurred across the world including the Second Sino-Japanese War, the Chaco War and the earth changing World War II. The decade also saw a host of technological advances including television, radio and nuclear fission.

During World War II, it was assumed that Nazi Germany was trying to produce nuclear weapons. To counter this The United States, Canada and The United Kingdom gathered their best scientists to produce such weapons before the Germans. Their efforts were successful and in August 1945 two nuclear bombs were dropped on Japan which ended the war in the Pacific.

Since then, the USA produced the first Hydrogen bomb in 1952 and Russia countered this by building one of their own. Over time, both the USA and Russia continually built nuclear weapons based on the threat each country posed upon one another. By 1986 it was estimated that throughout the world there were 40,000 nuclear warheads. These weapons had the capability of destroying the world many times over.

Today, there are eight states that have successfully detonated nuclear weapons. Five of these are considered ‘nuclear weapon states’ under the terms of the Non-Proliferation Treaty. This international treaty was devised to prevent the spread of nuclear weapons, whilst promoting the peaceful uses of nuclear energy.

Despite this, recent events have seen North Korea testing nuclear weapons and even threatening to launch nuclear strikes on the U.S. North Korea have broken many UN sanctions and are also known to have exported nuclear weapons to countries with a history of corruption, which might harbour terrorist cells.

Nuclear Weapon States

We’ve created a map to illustrate where these nuclear weapon states are. The map is featured below, is colour coded and fully interactive. Clicking on a shaded country will display its nuclear weapon states status. To find out more nuclear weapon states click here.

Apr 24 13

Map Gifts For Father’s Day

by MattThomason

Dad’s can be difficult to buy gifts for. As a broad rule, men are generally harder to buy gifts for than women. It’s often best to play it safe and buy your Dad something that will allow him to reassert his masculinity. Something like a Bosch Power Drill or a screwdriver with interchangeable heads. Chances are, though, he will already have all the things that he really wants. However, there might be some things he doesn’t even know he wants yet!

Maps can provide the perfect solution when searching for a gift this Father’s Day. Whether it’s an Executive World Map for the office, or a Personalised Postcode Map for the living room. Whatever your needs may be, Maps International can help you find the perfect map gift for your Dad. Here are a few ideas to get you started:

Premium Executive World Wall Map

Our premium executive world wall map is perfect for the office and available mounted on a walnut style frame. Complete with political detail (countries shaded in different tones), country boundaries and cities shown, this really is the most stylish and practical map available.

Framed Historic British Empire World Wall Map

Our Framed Historic British Empire World Wall Map is truly stunning. The original print is dated back to 1896 when the British Empire was reaching its peak. The map details trade routes and uses shading to illustrate areas of the world under British control. A perfect historic piece for your historic Dad!

Board Mounted Personalised World Wall Map

Our Board Mounted Personalised World Wall Map is a unique take on our classic Political World Wall Map. With this map you can add a title and subtitle to your map, as well as being able to change border and text colours. Personalise your map to add a heartfelt touch to a top quality gift.

Give something unique this Father’s Day. Find the maps above, and more, at our online store.

May 21 13

Mary’s Moonwalk

by MattThomason

Contrary to popular belief, the Moonwalk isn’t just the signature dance move of the great Michael Jackson. It’s also the name of a fantastic event that aims to raise money for the global fight against breast cancer. The Moonwalk is an all night power walking challenge around the streets of central London. But that’s not all. The walk follows a massive 26 mile route and all participants (even the men) must do the walk in a bra!

Last week, our very own Mary Bohm left the Office to take on the challenge. Her team, the Leki Trekkers, consisted of three other ladies determined to raise money for the cause. In total Mary’s team raised a huge £780 for the charity and crossed the finish line in around 7.5 hours. Mary said it was “Most certainly an experience not to be missed although I feel it will be the only time I walk around London in my bra!”

We’d like to extend our congratulations to Mary for her amazing work and we’re proud to have her as part of the Maps International team. If you’d like to be a part of the 2014 Moonwalk then visit www.walkthewalk.org for more information.

Mary's Moonwalk

Jun 28 13

James Davenport’s Airport Map

by MattThomason

The power of flight has changed the way we live. Traversing the whole earth prior to flight would have taken days, if not months to complete. Now, we’re able to fly across the entire planet in a matter of hours. Each decade bringing with it more powerful and efficient aviation technologies. More and more British people take to the skies and holiday abroad, in an attempt escape from the traditional rain sodden summers of Britain.The increase in demand for air travel, coupled with a growth in multinational logistics has resulted in the construction of new airports, in all corners of the globe.

Cartographer, James Davenport has stowed away conventional cartographic boundaries and used digital mapping technology to create a map of the world, plotted using airports. The results are fantastic. Each small blue dot represents an airport and it’s clear to see where flight is the preferred means of travel. The USA appears to be swarming with airports, particularly towards its eastern coast. Whereas Asia tells an entirely different story, with what appears to be hundreds of miles between each airport.

The data for the airport map was gathered from ourairports.com and plots a total of 45,132 runways. The airports on the map range from dirt fields to airports the size of Heathrow. How many have you been to?

Airport Map

Jul 17 13

How to escape a British heat wave

by MattThomason

The UK is currently experiencing ‘Summer’. A phenomenon which happens once a year and usually consists of around a week of sunshine, followed by a lot of wet weather. This year, however, Britain is experiencing an ongoing heat wave, which is only getting hotter. A welcome change to the traditional British summer. The heat isn’t for everyone though and some people may want to escape from it, retreating to the coast to bathe in the sea, or in extreme cases, the other side of the world! So, where in the world are the best places to go to escape a British heat wave?

St Ives

1. Australia

Being south of the equator, Australia is currently in the middle of their winter, making it a perfect time to go there if you want to escape the heat. You can enjoy skiing down Victoria’s slopes or diving into the balmy waters of Queensland’s Great Barrier Reef.

2. South Africa

South Africa also lies South of the Equator and has a rather mild temperature during the summer months. Visit one of South Africa’s beautiful cities, try some local cuisine and watch the cricket, all in a cooler, more comfortable atmosphere.

3. Hokkaido, Japan

Hokkaido is Japan’s second biggest island. It has very cool summers and is home to some very rare flowers, native to the local climate. Despite the cool of summer, Hokkaido is a hotbed for seismic activity and there are still 6 active volcanoes on the island. Don’t let this put you off though, Hokkaido is a beautiful place with a number of vast National Parks to explore.

4. Cornwall, England

If you fancy taking a break a little closer to home, then the Cornwall coast is likely to be your best bet. Golden beaches, quaint seaside towns and Cornish ice cream make the intense heat a bit more bearable. Take a trip to “Porthminster” in St.Ives and the “Par Sands” beach in Par, next to St. Austell.

5. Greenland

When we think of holidays abroad, Greenland probably doesn’t top the list. Temperatures rarely exceed 10 degrees Celsius and most of the area is uninhabitable. However, there are a few specialised travel companies that will take you to the planet’s largest (non-continental) island, and you’ll get to stay as cool as a cucumber!

Written by guest blogger Jake Blay.

Apr 1 15

The UK is predicted to move closer to America in the next 200 years!

by Liam

Geographic enthusiast and scientist John Flask has conducted research into the movement of plate tectonics, and how they are predicted to shift over the next 200 years. His findings are truly mind-blowing.

Research into the matter was developed in Portland North State University, United States, and was released late last night. Cartographers around the world seem to be going crazy over the idea, and it’s huge news for any mapping company.

Flask suggests that within the course of the next 200 years the UK will actually shift a considerable rate, closer towards the United States and further away from Europe.

The map below shows the predicted change.

The UK is predicted to move closer to America in the next 200 years!

The UK is predicted to move closer to America in the next 200 years!

This research has truly amazed us, and it’s fascinating to think how much different a world map will look through the movement of plate tectonics, and the shift of the UK across the Atlantic Ocean.

The movements further away from Europe is sure to hold many complications including, trading and exports, and also political barriers. Not to mention the despair for cartographers around the world who will have to alter maps to account for the change.

What do you think of Flasks research? Can you see this happening? Let us know in the comments below!

Feb 24 15

Personalised Gifts This Mother’s Day - ‘Home Is Where Mum Is’ Map

by Liam

Personalised Gifts this Mother’s Day - ‘Home Is Where Mum Is’ Map

Personalised Gifts this Mother’s Day - ‘Home Is Where Mum Is’ Map

With Mothering Sunday fast approaching (Sunday 15th March - just in case you forgot), the special date also falls on the fourth Sunday of Lent. Whatever you’re thinking about giving up for Lent, whether it’s chocolate, or alcohol, here at Maps International we believe showing how much you love and appreciate your mother is something you should never stop doing.

Mother’s Day is always a really lovely time of the year, you get to show one of the most special and important people in your life how much you cherish her. If you’re stuck for ideas, and you’re looking to purchase something really individual and special, dont panic! We’ve got just the solution for you.

Personalised Gifts this Mother’s Day - ‘Home Is Where Mum Is’ Map

Our Personalised ‘Home is Where Mum is’ Map lets you remind your mum how important she is and that you still feel your heart is at home with her; with you being able to centre the map on your very own postcode, it truly is a unique gift created just for her. You could use any postcode from the childhood home you grew up in and have fond memories of, to the holiday cottage you used to spend your summers in. What postcode you choose, is really up to you!

Personalised Gifts this Mother’s Day - ‘Home Is Where Mum Is’ Map

There are a variety of border colours to choose from which allows you to tailor the gift to suit your family home and the map can be kept for a lifetime, for family, and friends to admire.

This map is an easy way to create a personalised and thoughtful gift for your mum for Mother’s Day, in just a few minutes in the comfort of your own home. She’s guaranteed to love this map, as the personalised touch means it’s completely tailored to suit her, making it an extra special gift that you won’t find anywhere else!

Personalised Gifts this Mother’s Day - ‘Home Is Where Mum Is’ Map

So with prices starting at £50.00 order now, and with free UK shipping you can relax with the knowledge that your gift is taken care of for this special day.

Feb 5 15

Valentine’s Day gifts - The best journeys are worth sharing

by Liam

February has graced us with its presence once again, and for a lot of individuals that only means one thing - no, not a few days closer to longer and sunnier afternoons, I’m talking about Valentines Day!

Whether you’re planning something special for your loved one, or looking to give a truly unique and personal gift to your friend, we have an amazing product which is guaranteed to bring great joy to the recipient.

Some of us are very on the ball when planning and preparing Valentine’s Day gifts, whilst others tend to leave it more to the last minute, either way Valentines Day gifts are always difficult to choose. When thinking of a gift you want something thoughtful and unique to suit your partner. We believe that our range of Personalised Maps are a brilliant way to create an individual gift; they make a great addition to any home and are something which you can keep forever.

Valentine's Day - The best journeys are worth sharing

Valentine's Day gifts - The best journeys are worth sharing

Valentine's Day - The best journeys are worth sharing

Valentine's Day - The best journeys are worth sharing

In just a few simple steps you can make your own inspired Valentines Day gift by choosing the border colour and title and/or a subtitle, as well as the style of the map. With the option to add a pack of white luggage tags, you can label and mark on places which mean something to both you and your partner. These could range from where you first met, to your favourite holiday destinations. With these options available it is very much a unisex gift, and something which you can enjoy together and display in your home for family and friends to admire. And hey, the best journeys are worth sharing right?

So with Valentine’s Day not too far away and with prices for the map starting at £44.10 – what are you waiting for? Head over to Maps International and order your Valentine’s Day gift in the comfort of your own home and get free delivery now.

Jan 27 15

Creative Map Art - Bedroom Ideas for Kids

by Liam

By decorating your child’s room with a map, you can be sure that it will be one of the few things that will stand the test of time as the child grows up. A map is unusual in the fact that it appeals to kids of all ages, and is very much a unisex product. It can be used for a variety of different things from tracking all the places the child visits through the years, to providing the answer to a homework question asking the capital city of an obscure country.

A map also makes a great educational tool. After all, an Ofsted report, which was based on observations of geography classes at 91 primary and 90 secondary schools between 2007 and 2010, found that all but the best students were “spatially naïve” due to them being unable to locate countries, key mountain ranges or other features with any degree of confidence. For example, they understood about development issues in Kenya but had little or no idea of where Kenya was in Africa.

With this in mind, not only have we thought of some fantastic bedroom ideas for kids, we have also recently updated our Children’s Art Map range, with more colourful designs which can be seen below. As well as helping your child brush up on their geography knowledge, The new brighter styles of map we believe will help to engage children more, and with the new labels applied it makes the map clearer and easier to read.

Like the look of these designs? On our website we currently stock our updated Children’s Art Map of the World in two different colours, Blue and Pink, so you are guaranteed to find a design that will suit and compliment your child’s room in a good fashion.

Children’s Art Map of the World - Blue

Bedroom Ideas for Kids: Children’s Art Map of the World - Blue

Children’s Art Map of the World - Blue

Children’s Art Map of the World - Blue

Children’s Art Map of the World - Pink

Bedroom Ideas for Kids: Children’s Art Map of the World - Pink

Children’s Art Map of the World - Pink

Children’s Art Map of the World - Pink

Children are sure to benefit, with this fun and educational wall map that will provide a unique and stylish touch to their room. We hope to have provided you with some bedroom ideas for kids, and I’m sure our Map Art selection will look simply stunning hung up on the kids bedroom wall.

Jan 21 15

My Top 10 Favourite Map Tattoos

by Liam

In the news this week, we saw Kevin Pietersen get a brand new tattoo, which appealed to us, as he got a map of the world inked across his body. This inspired me to do a bit of research, to see if anybody else has similar tattoos that also showcase their passion for mapping and travel.

Tattoos are a wonderful way to display something that may have sentimental value to you, or may remind you of something. Tattoos can also act as a pure display of art. Getting tatted’ is a great way to express yourself in a unique art form which is personal to you. In this article, I will be looking at my top 10 favourite map tattoos which I’ve come across courtesy of both Buzznet and Pinterest.





















These marvellous tattoos range from black outlined back pieces to a colourful artistic interpretation of the world. They’re all special and unique in their own way, and I’m sure all these travel enthusiasts are more than pleased with their commitment to their bodies. Personally I don’t think I could tolerate number 10 on the sole of my foot though.. ouch!

If you’ve seen some artistic designs which appeal to you, why not check out our Map Art section and see what amazing map designs we sell.

Do you have any map related tattoos? Would you ever get one for yourself? Let us know in the comments below.

Oct 13 14

8 World Map Wallpapers to suit any home

by Alice Carter

1. Executive World Map Wallpaper

For those that want to create a stylish living space this world map wallpaper will complete your classic look.


2. Giant Mural - World Map Wallpaper (Blue Ocean)

This would make a perfect interactive addition to any child’s bedroom or playroom – can you help them find Guinea-Bissau on the map?


3. Butterflies World Map Wallpaper

One thing you can be sure of is that not many people will have seen this Map of the World before! It is a truly unusual and unique design.


4. Magnetic World Map Wallpaper – Political

Our political styled magnetic wallpaper is not only stylish but also practical as you can stick on postcards sent from friends and family, as well as travel photos and mementos of your trips away.


5. Blue World Map Wallpaper

If you have a nautical themed room or maybe you just love all things blue – this is the wallpaper for you!


6. Faded World Map Wallpaper

Ideal for those who have a modern home or are looking for a more minimalist and subtle styled world map wallpaper.


7. Kids Animal World Map Wallpaper

Will look great on your child’s wall and is a fun way to help them learn about the world. Can you spot the African Lion or the Chinese Panda?


8. Giant Mural – Classic World Map Wallpaper

A affordable yet chic wallpaper in classic colours, which makes it ideal for the home or office.


Sep 2 14

How to create your very own travel momento - a photo map!

by Alice Carter

Each week I can spend hours on Pinterest, re-pinning loads of great ideas and products on to my ever increasing number of boards. The latest great craft tip that I saw this week, I was especially excited by – as it involved incorporating my love of travel with my love of maps.

Having only just come back recently from my latest summer trip, I was looking for a way of displaying my travel snaps in a fun and refreshing way. When I stumbled upon the idea of using a map of the place you have visited, as the background mount for a holiday photo. It seemed like such a simple, yet perfect solution to recording my memories of my vacation - a photo map.

I decided to test out what this would look like with one of my photos, and it was so easy and quick that I am definitely going to do this with several more travel snaps. In fact, I may also use this photo map as a way of making a fun and cheap travel gift for Christmas and Birthdays for family and friends.

Check out the images below and see for yourself how simple it is to make your own photo map!

All that you need to make the photo map

Everything that you need to make the photo map!

The end result. Our photo map.

Our photo map of Italy

Aug 15 14

Personalise Your World and create your own travel story this summer

by Alice Carter

In recent times we have seen a growing fascination with maps, and we believe this is partly down to people travelling more than ever and the desire to explore the world, especially to far-flung places. We have come up with a great way of keeping track of where you want to go next and marking on the memories already made on previous holidays– this is through our personalised travel map.

With each world map being mounted onto a pinboard and with the option to add travel tags, pins and your own title and subtitle – you can really make the map your own travel story. What we love about this, is that it can last for years and grows over time – as you explore more places.

You can use this travel map to mark on your own journeys but also those of loved ones – you can for example pin on postcards or travel mementos brought back for you from friends and family. As well as pinning on airline boarding passes and tickets to sights and attractions, which you have visited over the years.

Check out the images below to see our Personalised Travel Map, annotated with postcards and memories collected from across the globe.

Personalised Travel Map

Personalised Travel Map

Rio de Janeiro 2012

Rio de Janeiro 2012

Tanzania 2007 & Thailand 2014

Tanzania 2007 & Thailand 2014

Personalised Travel Map with luggage tags

Personalised Travel Map with luggage tags

Australasia Travels

Australasia Travels

North America Travels

North America Travels

Jul 3 14

Survive the school holidays with the help of our world maps - keeping the kids entertained this summer!

by Alice Carter

Entertaining the kids during the summer holidays, can always be challenging especially with the Great British weather to contend with. However, do not fear we have the answer to keeping them occupied and in the process improve their geography knowledge.

Our doodle map is able to let the children’s imagination run wild as the world comes alive, as they draw their story across the map. The English Channel may become inhabited by a powerful sea monster armed with a sword and shield, Europe might become a secret base full of ninjas. Anything is possible!

After the sun sets and night descends, why not use a glow in the dark world map or glow in the dark star map for kids to provide some ambient lighting to the kid’s bedroom. So they can see that what they thought was a monster, was in fact their coat hanging on the back of the bedroom door! It can also make a great fun addition to kid’s sleepovers or maybe they could even see it glow in their den - which they’ve built under the stairs…

Our Glow in the Dark Map of the World

Our Glow in the Dark Map of the World

Our Doodle World Map

Our Doodle World Map

Our Doodle World Map

Our Doodle World Map

Jun 12 14

We are going nuts for the Brazil World Cup, with our own office sweepstake plotted on our World Map!

by Alice Carter

The atmosphere in Maps International has become rather competitive, as the World Cup gets underway today. Everyone in the office has taken part in a sweepstake, entering two whole pounds of their own money in the hope of picking a team which will win the football tournament.

My two picks were – Russia and Nigeria – these are not the two favourites in the competition with the odds of Russia winning being put as 125 -1 and Nigeria’s odds are 300 – 1. However, for me the World Cup is not just about cheering on our teams to win but also about immersing ourselves in football fever. So why not join in with your own sweepstake, with bringing together your family and friends to take part?

We created ours by using Paddy Power’s Sweepstake World Cup Kit, we then used one of our very own World Wall Maps to pin on each picked country. Check out our finished article below, to get some inspiration!

World Cup Sweepstake

Our World Cup Sweepstake

World Cup Sweepstake

Our World Cup Sweepstake

World Cup Sweepstake

Our World Cup Sweepstake

World Cup Sweepstake

Our World Cup Sweepstake