It’s time to dig into my shoeboxes again. So far on my Travels in my Shoebox blogs I have dragged out my beer coaster collection, boarding passes and bank notes. My largest collection, however (filling up an impressive three whole shoeboxes), is my collection of city maps. Remember them? Why I say that is because you don’t really need a city map anymore. On my last couple of trips I simply used the map on my phone. I’m not sure exactly when it happened, but the map on my iPhone didn’t work without wi-fi and now it does. Once you hit the streets the map stopped working, but now you can follow the little blue dot as you traipse around the city. I have since navigated my way around San Francisco, Phnom Penh and Ubud without a city map.
I have to admit, though, that I did miss not having a city map. I missed getting hopelessly lost then standing at a corner with a large city map unfolded out scratching my head trying to figure out where I was. There is also something else special about a good old fashioned city map. I just have to open one of my many city maps and memories flash back of wandering aimlessly around looking for a museum, gallery or famous fountain. Many of my maps also have pen marks all over them of restaurants, shops or an entire walking tour, while some are so worn out from all the folding and unfolding (with a lot more folding as it usually took ten attempts to get it back to its original form).
So, here are a few of my favourites from my massive pile. They either are a cool design (or bad design) or simply a favourite place.
I got all these Danish city maps around the same time and I love the different illustrative styles.
I also had a Tangier and Fez map in the same style (which I lost back in 1988!), but theses Moroccan city maps are funky!
Come visit our great city attractions. In Warsaw it’s a very ugly building, while in Oslo it Maccas (with the Mcdonalds all prominently marked on the maps inside)
Which way am I supposed to go in Garmisch? And that fellow is quite ‘excited’ about Cancun!
Simple and stylish for these two Italian cities (oh, except the fashion on the Rome map)
Those Iberians are just as stylish. I love the two very different illustration styles.
Thankfully, the map inside wasn’t as basic as the front!
Of course Rio had to have a cool map.
This one is a bit sad. I got this one back in 1989.
Do you still use good ol’ fashioned city maps?