As you may or may not know, I’m a huge fan of old school ways of doing things. So it’s no surprise that when I saw these hand drawn maps by A la Carte Maps, I wanted to get my hands on the whole set as soon as I could. Yeah, I know there are more modern forms of navigation nowadays with Google Maps and GPS systems but the sort of intrigue that these cartoonish foldable maps bring cannot be measured on levels of efficiency.
A la Carte Maps was born from two Swiss entrepreneurs’ vision of “revolutionizing” the traditional way of traveling. The result? A love child stemming from the elements of a map, guidebook and a fun piece of collectable art. What’s even cooler about A la Carte is the fact that they point out all the hottest places locals go rather than directing you to the usual tourist traps most maps do. Whether it be the best street food stalls or where the hippest crowds party on a Wednesday night, you can count on A la Carte Maps to bring you to all the right places. Experience the most genuine and authentic impressions of the cities without having to fight your way through camera-toting tourists snapping shots of everything in sight. There’s also an option for you to create your own city map for each of the cities with a given template, which makes for a great personalized gift idea. Currently their collection consists of Barcelona, Munich, Shanghai, Zurich, Tokyo and Washington DC but New York, London, Paris and Vienna are on their way.
With the purchase of these maps, users can also access A la Carte’s online database offering a broader medley of tips for each city. All 6 cities are currently available for sale through their online store. They’re priced at EUR 8.90 for either of the two types of maps and 10% of each city map’s profit will be going towards a social project in that city. So be sure to pick one up before traveling.