For me, maps are the perfect fusion of art, information, insight, and entertainment. They help us navigate both physically and in the realm of ideas. What separates a good map and a great one is that the latter doesn’t stop with just mapping the territory: it expands the borders of our imagination.

There’s hardly a better place to see original, unusual, and interesting maps than this subreddit right here. Though we can’t mention the name (thanks, internet police!), it’s a veritable treasure chamber for cartographers, amateur and professional alike! Having celebrated its 10th birthday this spring, the online group now boasts more than 1.6 million members, pulling in thousands of new ones on a steady basis. Content is king and these redditors, including the founder, land surveyor Patrick McGranaghan, make some truly marvelous maps.

Featured here you’ll find some of the freshest and greatest new maps. Pack your bags, put on your safari hats, and let’s go on an adventure, Pandas! Just remember to upvote the maps that you enjoyed the most, the ones that taught you something new, and the ones that gave you a fresh perspective on the world.

Patrick, the founder of the subreddit, revealed to Bored Panda what makes a good mapmaker and whether we all need to be tip-top artists. A lot depends on the purpose of the map itself, however, the main goal is to make it as informative and easy to understand as possible. Art skills? Not as important. (Though certainly a plus!)

"There are many different reasons one chooses to make a map. Sometimes for navigation, sometimes for showing statistical phenomena, and sometimes for fantasy. While artistic skill helps, it is not absolutely necessary. The important thing is to make it easy for users to glean useful information. Most maps should have a thesis or a story it is going to tell and this needs to be told through the map," he said.

Hungry for more magnificent maps? Then you’ll want to have a scroll through Bored Panda’s previous articles about map-lovers and their creations here: [Unrolls 5 parchments with ancient symbols and drawings] Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, and Part 5.

More info: Reddit | Twitter | Tumblr

#1

The Journey Of An Arctic Fox Who Walked From Norway To Canada In 2018

The Journey Of An Arctic Fox Who Walked From Norway To Canada In 2018

oglach Report

Scifi1203
Community Member
1 month ago

This is very cool, should be ranked higher!

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I was curious to find out what personal projects Patrick has been working on recently. "Lately, I've been learning Blender. It is more of a 3-D animation program used by video game developers, but I believe that there are ways to use it to display maps," he spoke about the innovative way of using the program.

"You might have seen some beautiful maps by Sean Conway and Scott Reinhard showing old maps with digital elevation terrain underneath. These are often made in Blender. Blender has a great ability to show light and shadow patterns that are almost photo-realistic. I think there are ways to use this program beyond showing maps with realistic terrain. I'm still a novice now, but I'd like to explore other ways this program can visualize maps," Patrick spoke about his ongoing adventure to learn Blender. If you Pandas haven't already, you really ought to take a look at Sean and Scott's work as well.

#2

The Baltic Way. On 23 August 1989, Two Million People Joined Their Hands To Form A Human Chain Spanning 675.5 Km Across The Three Baltic States. The Protest Was Against The Soviet Occupation, And To Support The Independence Movements Of The Three States

The Baltic Way. On 23 August 1989, Two Million People Joined Their Hands To Form A Human Chain Spanning 675.5 Km Across The Three Baltic States. The Protest Was Against The Soviet Occupation, And To Support The Independence Movements Of The Three States

SteO153 Report

Falcon
Community Member
1 month ago

Was part of this as a little potato :P

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#3

A Map Art Piece I'm Working On Of Paris' Latin Quarter

A Map Art Piece I'm Working On Of Paris' Latin Quarter

CamTron89 Report

Anonymous
Community Member
1 month ago

Impressive

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The founder also told Bored Panda about the current state of the subreddit and how Reddit as a whole has changed recently. Changes in tech are also driving changes in content. "The subreddit is doing well. Reddit overall over the last few years has shifted towards mobile-friendly content. Reddit used to be only for desktop users. In the early days, the content was mostly large files that were wallpaper-sized. They were great for zooming in and exploring in detail."

However, these days are long gone. Nowadays, "Reddit is overwhelmed" with users who only use it on their smartphones and other mobile devices. "For better or worse, that is how it is and that's the trend for the future. The subreddit contains a lot of bite-size Instagram-style statistical maps. The community upvotes this content and if that's what they want, that's the direction the sub will take."

#4

No One Lives In The Green Part Of New Zealand,the Population Density There Is 0 People Per Km And That Is About 78% Of New Zealand Land

No One Lives In The Green Part Of New Zealand,the Population Density There Is 0 People Per Km And That Is About 78% Of New Zealand Land

Felixheifgwofbebrjwh Report

New Prometheus
Community Member
1 month ago

Excellent, plenty of space for wildlife :)

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#5

Zealandia, The 8th Continent That's Almost Entirely Submerged

Zealandia, The 8th Continent That's Almost Entirely Submerged

JamesWinter83 Report

Eirik Johnsbråten
Community Member
1 month ago

TIL. This is awesome!

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#6

Rivers Of Italy

Rivers Of Italy

JoeFalchetto Report

ADHORTATOR
Community Member
1 month ago

beautiful

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Patrick, the founder of the subreddit, was kind enough to go into detail about the online group, map-making, and his passion for maps on a number of occasions.

“I've noticed, especially as I've gotten older, that you only have so much time on this planet and every day that is wasted is a day that you'll never get back. If you want to get out and explore the world you just have to do it,” Patrick previously told Bored Panda about seizing the day and starting your adventure today, instead of putting these things off indefinitely.

“Some adventures will cost time and resources, but the real question I ask myself is can I afford not to do some goal I have my heart set on. There are so many opportunities in this world that it may be hard to choose, but if you wait too long those opportunities will be gone forever," Patrick said that we have to seize opportunities to live (really live) as they come.

#7

Territories Where Married Gay Couples Can Buy Rifles To Protect Their Marijuana Plants

Territories Where Married Gay Couples Can Buy Rifles To Protect Their Marijuana Plants

born_in_cyberspace Report

ADHORTATOR
Community Member
1 month ago

that one is very specific

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#8

Wolf Distribution In Italy Since 1900

Wolf Distribution In Italy Since 1900

d-williams Report

Scagsy
Community Member
1 month ago

Some have even migrated to Wall Street.

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#9

Reported UFO Sightings Map. Last 115 Years

Reported UFO Sightings Map. Last 115 Years

Sketchder Report

Lance LaRocque
Community Member
1 month ago

UFO means unidentified flying object. It does not mean alien most are probably military from earth.

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Recently Patrick had been working on pixel maps that are bound to get the attention of anyone who’s got a penchant for video games, retro items, or pixel art. "This spring, I was making a lot of pixel maps that looked like old video game graphics. I picked some exotic places like Botswana and Mongolia to make these maps," he revealed a bit about his projects.

"I think a great way to learn about an exotic place is to make a map of it and really give some hours and care into making the map look as good as possible. You really get a connection for a place as you're putting labels on and making decisions about what to include and where to lay everything out,” the founder told Bored Panda.

#10

The Easternmost Point Of Brazil Is Closer To Africa Than To Its Westernmost Point

The Easternmost Point Of Brazil Is Closer To Africa Than To Its Westernmost Point

Thessiz Report

Andy Acceber
Community Member
1 month ago

By a significant distance too. That's really cool.

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#11

The Longest Possible Train Travel In The World

The Longest Possible Train Travel In The World

gutturalEland9936 Report

Hans
Community Member
1 month ago

The interesting questions now are: how long would that take? What would a ticket cost?

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#12

Existence Of Pangaea Proven With Evidence Of Similar Fossils Across Continents

Existence Of Pangaea Proven With Evidence Of Similar Fossils Across Continents

No_Woodpecker259 Report

Assistant to DJ
Community Member
1 month ago

As a child I always thought this was easy to prove by just looking at a world map, the countries separated by oceans all fit together like jigsaw pieces.

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According to Patrick, moderating the subreddit is all about keeping a delicate balance and staying realistic: the fact is that you can’t keep everyone happy all the time. Nor should you try to when questions of quality are involved. “Moderating is always a delicate balance. It is impossible to please everybody. If you are too laissez-faire you get a lot of low effort and ugly submissions and the users complain,” he said.

#13

Closer To Paris Or To London?

Closer To Paris Or To London?

atlasova Report

Adam Jeff
Community Member
1 month ago

Nice demonstration of the difficulty of mapping a spherical planet onto a flat sheet - this should be a straight line around the globe...

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#14

Countries That Have Yet To See True Temperature Extremes

Countries That Have Yet To See True Temperature Extremes

jack_urian Report

MagicalUnicorn
Community Member
1 month ago

lucky bastards!

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#15

After Tokyo 2020 This Map Remains The Same. All Men’s Water Polo Gold Medal Winners Since 2000 Were Born Inside This Circle

After Tokyo 2020 This Map Remains The Same. All Men’s Water Polo Gold Medal Winners Since 2000 Were Born Inside This Circle

ASR004 Report

Anne
Community Member
1 month ago

Must be something in the water...

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However, being too strict is also not an option. “If you are too strict, then you risk alienating those who supply the content for the sub. I try to find a balance between these two extremes. Overall, I'm satisfied with the moderating and I don't foresee any changes in the immediate future," Patrick explained.

#16

Variations Of The Given Name “Paul”

Variations Of The Given Name “Paul”

PaulOshanter Report

Anne
Community Member
1 month ago

Pouw? I only know that as a last name

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#17

Land Reclamation In The Netherlands

Land Reclamation In The Netherlands

Wrub229 Report

Susie Elle
Community Member
1 month ago

During low tide, you can walk from the mainland to the islands in the North as our country is flat as a pancake :)

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#18

Butter Or Olive Oil? Based On Actual Per Capita Consumption

Butter Or Olive Oil? Based On Actual Per Capita Consumption

Landgeist Report

troufaki13
Community Member
1 month ago

Νο surprise here

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Some people are naturally more skilled at navigation and using maps than others. Though, of course, navigation is a skill and you can get better at it so long as you’re patient, dedicated, and spend enough time honing it. “The older I get, the more I realize that spatial awareness just comes naturally to some people, and for others, it's a struggle," Patrick said. “In a way, reliance on Google Maps has made us dumber. We let the navigation app do all the work for us and don't engage with making the decisions.”

#19

The Strait Of Gibraltar

The Strait Of Gibraltar

eastofnowhereco Report

Vic
Community Member
1 month ago

Not very straight..

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See Also on Bored Panda
#20

Europe If The Sea Level Rose 100m

Europe If The Sea Level Rose 100m

oneletterh Report

Tom Apeldoorn
Community Member
1 month ago

Eh, the Dutch would survive. We'd just build a giant dome over the Netherlands and continue on as if nothing happened

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#21

Share Of Young People Aged 25 -34 Living With Parents

Share Of Young People Aged 25 -34 Living With Parents

silviucodreanu Report

MagicalUnicorn
Community Member
1 month ago

if you are surprised, just check property prices and salaries :(

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The founder had some advice for everyone about how we can develop our navigation skills in our local area. It’s a great way to get your foot in the door before moving on to bigger adventures.

"If you live in a place with a tall hill or some viewpoint, go up there some time and look around. Try to identify as many landmarks as you can. Notice where they are in relation to each other. Look for new landmarks that you've never noticed before and keep them in mind as you navigate your hometown.”

#22

Number Of Prisoners Per 100 000 People In European Countries

Number Of Prisoners Per 100 000 People In European Countries

theworldmaps Report

New Prometheus
Community Member
1 month ago

Spot the authoritarian regimes.

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#23

Traditional Hats Of Europe

Traditional Hats Of Europe

Xrodo33 Report

Caro Caro
Community Member
1 month ago

Mens hats ....

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#24

Sun Tanning vs. Skin Whitening

Sun Tanning vs. Skin Whitening

sam_3758 Report

Ambidextrous
Community Member
1 month ago

New zealand is non exsistant yet again

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Patrick continued: “If there are rivers or other features that cause chokepoints on bridges or highways, memorize all the bridges and where they go. In this way, you'll know the layout of your city and how to get around.”

#25

Languages Of Europe Using Lemon And Citrus

Languages Of Europe Using Lemon And Citrus

Due-Fee-4521 Report

Eirik Johnsbråten
Community Member
1 month ago

When life gives you lemons, move to a different country.

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#26

Percentage Of People Who Trust Climate Scientists, 2020

Percentage Of People Who Trust Climate Scientists, 2020

SkinlessFather Report

grotesqueer
Community Member
1 month ago

I'm shocked how low the numbers are! This is awful.

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#27

How Do You Sneeze?

How Do You Sneeze?

atlasova Report

Martin Schulz
Community Member
1 month ago

Good to know :-) now I can avoid some misunderstandings.

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As for the idea that ‘everything has been mapped,’ Patrick thinks it’s a bunch of baloney. “The world is constantly changing and accurate spatial data is a fleeting thing. Google Maps certainly gives the impression that everything is mapped, but there is selection and generalization in their data," he said that there will always be a need for new, fresh, updated maps.

#28

Percentage Of Indians With Toilet 2014 vs. 2017

Percentage Of Indians With Toilet 2014 vs. 2017

Cultural_Editor_4250 Report

Ciara Stone
Community Member
1 month ago

That's one of the few decent things Modi has done right for India-toilets and electricity nationwide. Didn't do anything about the slums though, like idk, HELPING them

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#29

Countries That Are Obligated To Defend The United States And Vice Versa

Countries That Are Obligated To Defend The United States And Vice Versa

MeronDC Report

Caro Caro
Community Member
1 month ago

NATO

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See Also on Bored Panda
#30

North America Compared To Jupiter

North America Compared To Jupiter

AmericaRUserious Report

The Frenchiest Fry
Community Member
1 month ago

I honestly thought it would be smaller compared to Jupiter

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#31

Countries Where It's Illegal To Smack Children!

Countries Where It's Illegal To Smack Children!

atlasmapper Report

Linda Tisue
Community Member
1 month ago

Sweden: in ten years of teaching at middle and high schools with 30% immigrant kids, never had a fight that drew blood. First week in US kid was put in the hospital. Don't have to do school shooting drills either

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#32

Countries Whose Local Names Are Extremely Different From The Names They're Referred To In English

Countries Whose Local Names Are Extremely Different From The Names They're Referred To In English

benjaneson Report

Sapna Sarfare
Community Member
1 month ago

India is also Hindustan, apart from Bharat

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#33

Nearly Half Of American Will Have Obesity By 2030

Nearly Half Of American Will Have Obesity By 2030

pouya02 Report

Otter
Community Member
1 month ago

If I move to Colorado, will I be thinner?

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#34

Number Of Cigarettes Smoked Per Person Per Day In European Countries

Number Of Cigarettes Smoked Per Person Per Day In European Countries

NotTheThreeBit Report

New Prometheus
Community Member
1 month ago

Smoked per smoker, not per person.

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#35

Percentage Of Obese Population Per Country In Europe

Percentage Of Obese Population Per Country In Europe

BlejiSee Report

Dan Buczynski
Community Member
1 month ago

America: hold my cheese beer

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Note: this post originally had 56 images. It’s been shortened to the top 35 images based on user votes.