Brilliantmaps: Making Sense Of The World, One Map At A Time

Have you every thought about how many times Scotland’s population could fit inside England, or wondered how many countries have been affected by the current ‘Panama Papers’ scandal, or maybe imagined how the world would look in Harry Potter’s eyes? Maybe? O.k. maybe you’re not that curious…. But we have all scoured the internet to find the perfect map to explain a certain phenomena in our research papers and powerpoint presentations. Well…Brilliantmaps is here for you! Brilliantmaps is the holy grail of maps!

Even if you are not obsessed with cartography, Brilliantmaps has something for everyone. The site regularly updates its content with interactive maps covering everything from current developments such as the Syrian Refugee Crisis to classic maps showing European’s view of the world in the beginning of the colonial era. For the true map lovers out there, the site ups the ante, allowing users to use scratch map templates to create their own maps and showcase it to the world. There is also a list of recommended board games that breathe a breath of fresh air into map making. Have a mentioned the Facebook page? And the newsletter? Brilliantmaps is brilliant because it provides a framework for integrating maps into our everyday life.

Check out some of my favorite maps below and don’t forget to take a look at the thousands of maps available on the website:

The Pan American Highway


UK regions compared to US States


The Travel Bucket List


Go get your map on! You will be surprised at the power of mapping!






MapMaker Interactive

This website is an interactive tool that allows you to view various criteria for different regions of the world simultaneously, along with being able to edit the map with markers and drawings. Though it is similar to ARCGIS software, this interactive map from National Geographic makes for a fun mapping experience. The criteria to view are grouped by categories including Physical Systems (land, water, climate), Human Systems (Populations & Culture, Political & Economic), and Environmental and society. The coolest thing about the map is being able to view multiple criteria at once, so for instance being able to see the human footprint of a region overlapping with volcanic eruptions to see if there is any correlation between the two. The drawing tools can be extremely useful, especially for measuring distances. If you select the ruler tool you can click between two points to measure the distance in km or miles. A variety of map modes are offered to view including terrain, topographic, satellite, streets, national geographic, and outline. All in all, this site is a great tool for geographers of all ages looking to explore different statistics and features of the world.

Check out the tool at