Have you ever spiralled down into a disused tube station, feared for your well-being during an exhilarating ride on the backseat of a Vietnamese motorcycle or scaled a derelict chimney in London? Have you ever wandered through the perpetual flow of humans in a Mumbai market, felt the chaos resolve itself around you as dusk falls and lanterns alight in Kyoto, or found yourself wonderfully lost whilst meandering down a charming Milanese side-street?
The French have a wonderful word—flâneur—for someone who seeks to explore and understand the nature of a city’s landscape, usually by taking spontaneous adventures amidst the ebb and flow of life going on around them. In this week’s theme we invite you to lose yourself reading about the flâneur-esque adventures of Maptia’s streetwise connoisseurs and explore a myriad of cities through their eyes.
Click the read more button below to peruse the 26 curious tales of urban exploration that we have featured in this week’s theme.
Greetings future explorer of the world! In this post we will be introducing you to Spontaneity and his mischievous cousin Serendipity.* They have faithfully accompanied many great explorers throughout the ages and we can guarantee that befriending these two on the road is bound to lead to unexpected wayward adventures and happy coincidences.
Inspired by Guerrilla artist Keri Smith’s delightful book on ‘How To Be An Explorer of the World’ and also some of the wonderfully creative ideas listed in the Lonely Planet ‘Guide to Experimental Travel’, we have compiled a short, illustrated field guide with seven ideas that we hope will encourage you to succumb to your spontaneous urges, adopt a healthy caution against over-preparation, embrace serendipity, shed the heavy cloak of routine, chase down happenstance, and invite chance to be your chaperon as you follow in the footsteps of the three aforementioned Princes—Onward! ¡Vamos! Allons-y!
Click the read more link below to discover our illustrated guide.
Have you ever bathed in the ancient springs of Pamukkale? Woken to the unmistakable dawn chorus of the Amazonian wilderness? Followed an underwater kaleidoscopic rainbow of coral? Tasted the relentlessly dry heat of the Sahara Desert or dreamt of finding yourself face to face with a Komodo Dragon?
A few days ago in Wonders of the World: Part I we shared tales from ten astounding man-made wonders of the world, and through the stories in Part II we hope you enjoy exploring some of the remarkable natural beauty of our planet.
Click the read more link below to explore a map of the stories and discover six wonderful tales from our founding storytellers.
Have you ever stood, enveloped in the cool, morning mists of the Andean foothills, and watched the first rays of sun strike the ancient Inca citadel of Machu Picchu? Have you ever felt the modern world melt away as you wander amongst the Pyramids of Giza, dwarfed by their audacious size? Have ever stopped in your tracks, your world arrested for a moment, as you experienced one of the wonders of our world for the first time?
Through the stories in Part I of this theme, we are sending you on a vicarious and colourful journey to experience 10 goliaths of human creation—via the diverse perspectives of our founding storytellers.
Click the read more link below to explore a beautiful map of our wondrous stories.
Have you ever felt the tug of the horizon, or been filled with a fierce desire to seek a life of freedom on the open road? Have you ever felt the rumble of cylinders or the squeeze in your thighs as your feet push the pedals? Have you ever left a million footprints behind you or pressed tire tracks into the dust of a faraway land? Have you ever turned the key in the ignition with only miles of unknown adventures ahead? Have you ever drawn a finish line that you barely believed you could reach?
For the twenty storytellers featured today in our ‘On the Road to Somewhere’ theme, the answer is a resounding yes. Together they have driven, cycled and walked across six continents — conveying themselves by car and motorbike, on bicycles, scooters and rickshaws, and even on foot. We (genuinely) calculated that these twenty journeys rack up enough cumulative miles travel to the moon and beyond.
Click the read more link below to explore a beautiful map of today’s theme, and to peruse the twenty featured stories themselves.
Have you ever marvelled at the scale and magnificence of those great, immoveable giants of nature, the mountains? Have you ever felt the cool caress of a snow-scented breeze from distant peaks, or seen the first long sun rays of dawn dispel shadows as light creeps up to heights? Have you ever lifted your eyes to a looming ridge and found a deep well of strength and resolve to take the next step upwards? Have you ever stumbled, half-delirious with fatigue and joy, onto a summit?
Today, for our inaugural Maptia Storytelling Theme, we bring to you the inspiring tales of thirteen mountainous adventures from all over the world.
Each of the featured stories touches on a different aspect of hiking, whether it is the mental and physical endurance required, the sublime feelings of insignificance evoked by the majestic surroundings, the relationships forged through adversity, or the jokes and laughter shared along the way.
Click the read more link below to explore a beautiful map of today’s theme, and to peruse the thirteen featured stories themselves.
Today we are delighted to announce that Maptia is officially launching! Here we share with you an illustrated guide to Maptia, the new storytelling platform on a mission to build the most inspirational map in the world. This post was written by Dorothy Sanders, Jonny Miller, and Dean Fischer, co-founders at Maptia. Illustrations by Ella Frances Sanders.
Maptia is a beautiful way to tell stories about places. It is a new platform designed for thoughtful, inspiring stories that make us want to get out there and explore the world, and each story has its own unique map.
A story could be big or small, a fleeting moment or the tale of a long journey. It could be about a place close to home or on the other side of the world. A story could be told by someone living just over the road or travelling many thousands of miles away. It could be told by you.
Today we are sharing version one of Maptia with the world. It is just a taster, an embryonic version of what we hope to build one day. Head over to our new homepage to check it out. There you will find some of the top stories contributed to Maptia so far, and you can also create your very own beautiful, typographical version of our manifesto.
Read on to learn more about what we are building, the philosophies behind storytelling on Maptia, and our vision for the future.
Over the past six months we have featured an eclectic mix of 47 memorable travel or life moments from places all over the world. Some have been inspiring or uplifting, others have made us want to grab our backpacks and head for the open road, some have made us laugh, and in a few cases some have nearly brought us to tears. Thank you to everyone who has taken part in this wonderful project.
Maptia moment submissions are now closed, but we wanted to end on a high and leave you with the final twelve moments that have found their way to the Maptia HQ from all over the globe.
"We write to taste life twice, in the moment and in retrospect." - Anaïs Nin
Click below to read the last Maptia moments and see the maps we have created for them...