We had great travel plans for this year with a trip to visit family in South Africa, a trip to Scotland for our John Muir Trust Award and around the kitchen table travels with our geography club. We were going to travel the world as a group, learning about different continents – it was all going to be so much fun… till you know what happened. One of the important skills in the life of an ardent adventurer, however, is the ability to read a map, and we have some pretty cool ones – including the Great British Map of Wonders.
Now, in all honesty, I bought a map from Marvellousmaps.com a few years ago – it was the Great British Adventure Map, and recently Marvellous Maps sent me the Great British Map of Wonders – a map of the funnest things to do in Britain.
What is a Marvellous Map?
If you don’t know about Marvellous Maps, they’re a company that makes maps fun, to “entertain and inspire people to discover and explore Britain’s best bits”. Their range of folded, flat and framed thematic maps of Britain are perfect for “adventurers, curious minds, road trippers, culture vultures, outdoor enthusiasts, foodies, bookworms, film fans, map aficionados and anyone whose wall or holiday plans could use a bit of livening up”.
The folded Map of Wonders is multi-faceted: there’s a map key, and a notes area as well as a place for your name, which is great for personalising plans.
The map is aimed at children, so the ‘instructions’ include things like ‘guess where on the map you live … if you’re not sure, ask a parent or someone who looks like they know things’. Another, after instructing you to draw a plate-sized circle around your home, to point out where you could probably travel to and back from on a day trip, you should ‘speak very nicely to your
chauffeurs parents’ – so you can see how it’s geared at children.
There are over 1000 amazing things to do and places to go listed on the map, identified by icons that are explained on the key – way to throw in some incidental learning, folks! – along with that, there’s a Top 50 icon on the map and each of the Top 50 has a little box elsewhere on the map that tells you more about that activity. Those boxes also have a tick box so you can tick off all the fun things you’ve done. If one of the Top 50 places is too far away, each Top 50 box also has a list of other places those activities can be done. Some activities on the map are marked with an asterisk (*) – those activities are a little older or more challenging and may need a little more planning.
The back of the map is excellent too – it has loads of blank spaces, for doodles, ideas, lists, colouring and making plans for where to go next.
This is a truly excellent map, and a wonderful way to encourage children to learn to read a map, or even help plan a road trip. Match it with the Adventure Map and there’s something for adults and children. Add to that the other maps – Great British Place Names, Great British Film and TV Map, Great British Music Map and the Great British Fd and Drink Map – and you can have as much time planning your next trip as actually enjoying it!
Personally, the next one I’m looking to acquire is Literary Locations…. or maybe Folklore and Superstition.
Ah, who’m I kidding? I want them all!
Where can you buy a Marvellous Map?
Marvellous Maps are available at marvellousmaps.com and at the time of writing the code DROPANDGIMME20 will give you 20% off when you buy two or more maps.
Alternatively, you can find them on Amazon too: