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Gifts for the World Traveler

Function and sentiment, why world travelers love a good old-fashioned map

Maps for world travelers at

Shelly Cone, November 21, 2013
Neatly folded in a knapsack, rugged and torn in a pocket or crumbled and wrinkled in a glove box, maps are a vital reference tool for world travelers. Think of the classic representation of the world traveler. Invariably, somewhere in that picture is a map.

At the height of the technology age we haven't given up maps but they're definitely taking on a new form. You access them from your car, your phone or your computer. However, for the world traveler today's Google Maps and GPS navigational units just can't take the place of a good old-fashioned map.

While technological navigation systems can get you directly where you want to go, print maps often provide topographical details like water bodies or landmarks. Smaller, more locally known paths and roadways are often included in print maps because cartographers have been able to survey and study the area.

How many times have you tried to find a place on your GPS only to discover that according to your device that place doesn't exist? Have you ever gotten to your destination only to discover that there was an even shorter, easier way to get there? It happens all the time. Studies have pitted GPS against paper maps in getting to a destination showing that people who use paper maps traveled less distance and got there faster.

Perhaps more importantly, for world travelers, maps also give a sense of place within an overall area. Knowing the "lay of the land" becomes extremely important when you are in a strange place.

Quite ironically, it's also the intangible that makes a tangible, paper map indispensable. It's the soul of such a map. More than just squiggly lines on a bit of paper, maps can be artistic, whimsical even. They can take you where you need to go or remind you of where you've been in that wonderful way that makes you want to keep that map as a memento or frame it and put it on your wall. When was the last time your GPS system made you feel that way?
Contemporary World Wall Map

Color Enthusiasts

Whether it's for reference or home décor, the World New Century Map is a great gift for world travelers because of its modern, up-to-date references combined with a beauty that comes from alluring graphics and a richer color palette than most maps. Like the World New Century Map the Contemporary World Wall Map has that same marriage of usefulness and style. More than just a looker, it's smart too. Loaded with detail the map features more than 3,000 places. Through vibrant colors and intensely contrasting majestic mountains and dark oceans the map will lend drama to the wall of your favorite world traveler while allowing him or her to dream of places not yet traveled.
Classic USA & World Wall Map Set

Classic Travelers

Maybe your world traveler is set on exploring more of the United States before heading out to more foreign parts. The Classic USA & World Wall Map Set will let that traveler do both. The Classic USA and World Wall Map Set is made up of the USA Political Wall Map and World Deluxe Political Wall Map bundled to make an exciting set. Or consider the National Geographic Maps flagship product National Geographic Political World Wall Map as one of your world traveler gifts. Extensive detail for type placement aids in readability and Winkel Tripel projection was used to reduce distortion of land masses as they near the poles.
Upside Down World Wall Map

Turn it Upside Down

Elegance is what the National Geographic Executive World Wall Map is all about. This antique-style world wall map is an award-winning product of National Geographic Maps that combines classic antique-style cartography with fully updated geographical representation. Contrast that with a little fun with the Upside Down World Wall Map. Created by this map is oriented with South toward the top and forces people to think of the world in a different way. Packed with more than 3,000 countries capitals, cities, political regions and natural features, the Upside Down World Wall Map turns the familiar on its head with lots of surprises.
Atlas of the World Deluxe Edition

Don't Forget About the Atlas

Finally, a real world traveler wouldn't be caught with his book shelf missing a copy of the Atlas of the World Deluxe Edition. This volume incorporates a wealth of large-scale North American maps plus a substantial number of new topographical maps of Asia and the Pacific. This resource offers expanded coverage of a variety of countries and six new maps of the ocean floor. It features 100 city maps of key urban centers and 102 pages of geopolitical maps, yet even with all that information it's more compact than the leading competition. The Atlas of the World Deluxe Edition makes a great gift for world travelers because it brings all of those faraway places close to homeā€”at least until your world traveler is ready to set off for adventure once again.

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