40 Crazy Facts About the World, in Maps

If you love maps and data, you should click on over to TwistedSifter.com, which has rounded up 40 maps to give you perspective on the world. See the global distribution of McDonald’s and the rainbow of Antarctica’s time zones. You can marvel at America’s rivers and many researchers, share the love of coffee and beer and sigh at our resistance to the metric system and paid maternity leave. One of the more surprising maps shows the busiest air travel routes of 2012, with the busiest flight path between Seoul and the island of Jeju, the “Hawaii of Korea.” There are no U.S. or European cities on the list, but if you’ve seen enough maps, you’ll have enough perspective to see we’re just a small part of this big globe.

See all 40 maps here>>

Africa: How big is huge ?

A few years ago, I was asked to be a guest speaker at a conference geared towards teachers. Each session had to do with either Japan, Germany and Africa. So, there you have it. A vast, diverse, complicated continent with the same billing as two countries. I narrowed my topic down to comparing Nigeria and The Gambia.

To really see Africa’s impact all one needs to do is see which of the world’s countries can fit inside it.

The statistics are staggering. Africa’s square miles are hard to wrap ones mind around. The first time I went there, I thought it would be easy to country hop from The Gambia to Kenya. Yeah, right. Going back to the U.S. was easier. What other countries could you add into the 29,843,826 of the countries represented here without going over? Singapore for sure. [via A Welsh View]

WorldMapper Maps

Anyone who enjoys looking at
maps as much as me and the geeky blogger over
at Geeky Traveller
do, will have a field day checking out these maps found at WorldMapper. Don’t count on finding
your way around Durban, Montevideo, or Hollywood with this particular map. The map reflects international tourist trips
made in 2003 and territory size shows the proportion of world international tourist trips to that territory. WorldMapper
does the math by explaining it like so:

"In 2003 665 million international tourist trips were made.
Dividing this by the world population would mean 10.7% holidayed abroad. However some people make multiple trips, so
less than a tenth of the global population make tourist trips abroad…"

My math may not be that
hot, but it doesn’t take a genius to figure out what’s going on according to this map. The swelling above tiny
shriveled up Africa in red is mostly Western Europe which happens to be one of the world’s most popular destinations
for international tourists. Geeky Traveller makes a good point noting that the traveler
that likes to avoid tourists will find this map very useful.

There are several other maps like the one
above depicting Tourist Origins, Tourism Receipts, and Tourism Profit to name a few. See WorldMapper for the rest.