By Abi King | Make Me Smile

Apr 02


Over 2000 years ago, the Babylonians carved their world into the Imago Mundi map of stone. In 1499, Juan de la Cosa risked his life to map out the Americas. And in early 2013 I zoomed into the annals of cartographic history by publishing my own blogtastic map.

Yes, that’s right, ladies and gentlemen. Where sharp minds and brave souls studied, calculated and threw their bodies onto the pyre of exploration in the quest for human knowledge and the desire to save thousands upon thousands of lives by charting the coasts and curves, the longitude and latitude, the, er, ups and the downs of this place we call earth, I too have joined the party. By putting my blog posts onto a kind of Google Map.

That’s right. I can tell you’re excited.

Ancient mapAh, OK, so it’s only me then. (But look! If you click on a marker you can read the posts relevant to that place! How cool is that?!! It’s giving sliced bread a run for its money, that is!)

And like all great mapperly masterpieces, it’s something of a work in progress. I’ll obviously be adding to it as I travel more and write more but I’ll also be sloshing back through the archives, gathering up waifs and strays, scrubbing them up and giving them a good home and a set of coordinates on this here Inside the Travel Lab map.

Make yourselves at home, click around and explore.

And if by some unimaginable calamity you cannot see the awesome map of which we speak because you’re reading this on some code-stripping, joy-sucking feed-reading e-device then stop for a moment and treat yourself. Click on the this link and zip around the world through words and pictures.

I could do this all day. Sigh…

So, er, what do you think?


About the Author

Abigail King is a writer and photographer who swapped a career as a doctor for a life on the road. Now published by Lonely Planet, the BBC, CNN, National Geographic Traveler & more, she feels most at home experimenting here: covering unusual journeys, thoughtful travel and luxury on

David Bennett April 4, 2013

Very cool – and it works!

    Abi King April 10, 2013

    Thank you!

Hogga April 7, 2013

love it!

Lance April 9, 2013

Oh that’s pretty cool. Thanks for sharing!

    Abi King April 10, 2013

    You’re welcome

Benny April 9, 2013

I found something on stumbleupon that may be relevant to this post. It’s a 90 second animation of the middle-east and it’s history of war and imperial takeover of various colonies throughout the ages. It is very cool and believe would be inline with the maps theme of this post.

It fascinates me, thought blatantly obvious, that by looking back in history it dictates the formation of countries and independent states and colonies around the world. Powerful stuff. Whole new respect for history.

    Abi King April 10, 2013

    Thanks – that’s actually a really, really interesting site. I like the spread of democracy and religion maps too. It helps put a lot of history and travel into context…In fact, I may post about too. Cheers!

Gayla April 11, 2013

This is an impressive map! I love being able to quickly see where on the globe the places are and to read something about them. Thank you!
Oh, and would you mind sharing how you made this map???

    Abi King April 20, 2013

    Certainly – I used the WP geo mashup plugin and had to go back through my posts adding a location to each one. I haven’t finished yet – it’s going to take some time!

      Gayla May 14, 2013

      Thanks so much for the info! This is just brilliant :-)

Harvey April 12, 2013

That’s a great map. I’m new to your blog and just lost half a day to it thanks to the map!! Great article on the London riots.

    Abi King April 20, 2013

    Ah, glad to hear it’s working! It was quite a trip down memory lane setting it up. Happy memories :-)

Robert April 16, 2013

Great Article! Thanks for sharing.

Joana April 18, 2013

It works like a treat, thank you :)

    Abi King April 20, 2013

    You’re welcome! Thanks for letting me know.

Ray @stingytraveller April 22, 2013

Quite an interesting feature. Great for visual people or folks who just want info on a particular region!

    Abi King May 9, 2013

    I’m very visual so I’ve been looking for something like this for ages!

Linda May 2, 2013

Worked amazingly well for me. Loving the site. I have visited many times but never showed my appreciation so thank you. x

    Abi King May 9, 2013

    Thank YOU for letting me know that :-)

Ibs May 8, 2013

Great idea, and works really well. Is there a limit to the number of tags you’re able to add to the map, or can you just keep going on and on?

    Abi King May 9, 2013

    I think you can just keep on going…That’s what I’m doing anyway!

Jeremy May 12, 2013

Sick! I’m a map head too :)

Rodrigo May 19, 2013

Loved the idea, Thanks for sharing this.

    Abi King May 21, 2013

    You’re welcome!

Roberto May 24, 2013

Can’t beat a good map! Think I’m a cartographer at heart.

    Abi King May 25, 2013

    Me too! Love em

Jamie Gibbs May 30, 2013

I love it – I’m a sucker for custom Google Maps (I’m trying to compile a geek’s map of Cardiff at the moment); I wish I had some proper cartography skills, though. One day …

    Abi King May 31, 2013

    Ah – I’d be interested in seeing that!

Richard June 6, 2013

Oh this is really cool. thanks for sharing. Maps are the best :)

    Abi King June 14, 2013

    You’re very welcome!

Shivangi June 13, 2013

This is very cool….great job….so much better than choosing from a list !!

    Abi King June 14, 2013

    I think so! Glad to hear you do too…

Harriet Richards June 28, 2013

Amazing, love it!

stellajohnson July 2, 2013

great adventure.. even map drawing was so difficult that days..

    Abi King July 3, 2013

    Still is these days! Took me ages to get this to work ;-)

Becky the Great August 8, 2013

Your map is gorgeous – and it makes it easy for us visual thinkers to see just how much of our world you’ve worn paths on! I’ve been wanting to do this on my blog, as well, but couldn’t quite figure out how to embed (is that the right word?) it. Is there a tutorial somewhere?

Thomas August 26, 2013

Wow youve been so many places! The wifey and i would really like to visit just 1/3 of the places you have already been to. Thanks for the map and the best part is that it works of course.

    Abi King September 3, 2013

    Yes, I’ve been very lucky. And hopefully I’ll get to see plenty more!

      Monnette September 14, 2013

      Indeed, you’ve been to many places but, obviously, the Philippines is not one of them. Hope you get to drop by one of these days.

john kelly August 28, 2013

fantabulous.. i can see that you pinned the islands like seychelles which are rarely explored by other travel bloggers. awesome!

    Abi King September 3, 2013

    Very interesting place, the Seychelles. Huge boulders, wild winds and volcanoes. Definitely worth a visit!

Oscar September 23, 2013

I wish I have seen so many places. We share two nice places Sidney and Toronto.

Briana October 29, 2013

Wow, that is inspiring!

Aqeel November 10, 2013

wow this looks amazing

The Epic Duo November 19, 2013

Wow! thats… a lot of dots! haha thats cool though – looove traveling…

and i see you’ve been to Costa Rica my home for the past year and a half – looking at the dots gives me that travel itch… lol thank you!

pura vida!

Bastiaan November 26, 2013

you visited a lot of places! Much more than me ;-). I came across your blog trough the blog top 100 from nomadic samuel. I’m a travel blogger myself. I don’t see a pin in New Zealand yet.. I’m there now and I can tell it’s absolutely gorgeous! It is without a doubt the most beautiful country I’ve visited (together with the philippines, which has a special place in my heart).

Nice blog and I will follow you on Facebook!

Cheers Bastiaan

Up State Life November 30, 2013

Very cool! I’m a complete map-o-phile so I might have to grab one of these myself!

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