Trends and ideas for interactive maps in 2021 – part 1

Let’s face it – maps can be beautiful. Many interactive maps are also quite intuitive and some of them are packed with features, that make you question everything you knew about maps.

We searched through tons of different maps to pick our favorites and share the results with you. Here are five different approaches to interactive maps that you want to check out,

Use hand-drawn elements – Step Inside Asia

This beautifully illustrated map takes you on a tour inside four Asian countries. A handcrafted but professional look with clever animations looks good, and you may find yourself just browsing around with no purpose. Clicking a location takes you further in a 3D-view and gives you additional information about the destination.

Explore the map: https://stepinsideasia.com/step-inside/

A hand-drawn map of Asia

Create an adventure – The Hidden Worlds of the National Parks

The Hidden Worlds of the National Parks is more of an interactive experience with map-like elements, but still an interesting take on area exploration. The service spans five National Parks in the U.S. and takes you on an adventure using a combination of 3D-video, Google Earth data, and audio.

Explore the map: http://artsandculture.withgoogle.com/nationalparks

An aerial view of Hawai'i volcanoes

Think bigger – Ancient Earth Globe

What did our beloved pale blue dot look like 20 million years ago? Or maybe 600 million years ago? Ancient Earth Globe takes you back in time and shows how the continents have shifted.

Explore the map: https://dinosaurpictures.org/ancient-earth/#240

A picture of earth 240 million years ago

Impress with subtle animations – Statskog Millionen

The Norwegian Statskog (State Forest) grants every year a total of 1.000.000 NOK to different organizations, that are doing nature-related work. All of those organizations are listed on this elegant map with subtle and elegant animations.

Explore the map: https://www.statskog.no/statskogmillionen/

A deep green map of Norway

Don’t be afraid to keep it simple – European Word Translator

Maps and translations often go hand in hand as you may travel to new destinations trying to learn at least a word or two in the local language. European Word Translator cleverly combines the two elements displaying the correct translation for a chosen word in every European language.

With a great idea, you don’t always need to follow the latest graphical trends to have an interesting map.

Explore the map: https://ukdataexplorer.com/european-translator/

European map with the word 'maps' translated in every language

Conclusion

Interactive maps have evolved and become more versatile every year and 2021 will be no exception.

All of the examples above are very different in the way they look and what their purpose is. And that’s also something you should consider when searching for the right maps to fit your needs.

Every map is unique and the same approach isn’t optimal for every case. Do you want your map to be a visually stunning piece of art or should it be a simple tool for displaying information with no distractions?

If you want to upgrade your current maps, don’t’ hesitate to contact us. We are always here to help.