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Aussie literal map of world claims astonishing pickup

June 29, 2018 Headline News No Comments Email Email

A quirky map of the world that gives the literal translation of the name of countries (such as “Land of Many Rabbits” for Spain, “I Go to the Beach” for Nauru and “In the Navel of the Moon” for Mexico) has gone viral and been picked up by nearly 200 news sites in over 50 different countries, according to those behind it.

The world map, created by Australian credit card comparison company Credit Card Compare, contains literal translations of every country name in the world into English.

Other colourful names include “Place of Abundant Fish” for Panama, “Hippopotamus” for Mali, “High and Beautiful” for Korea, and “Protected by Fire” for Azerbaijan.

Brazil means “Red like an Ember”, Sudan means “Country of the Blacks” – and in the Asia Pacific there’s “Land of the Long White Cloud” (New Zealand), “Land of the Rising Sun” (Japan), “Land of the Thunder Dragon” (Bhutan) – along with Australia, which means, rather more prosaically “Southern Land”.

The map was created on somewhat of a whim as a humorous marketing tool, but the huge level of online uptake astonished even Credit Card Compare, who say it has reached an online readership of 2.91 billion and achieved an estimated 9.64 million coverage views and​ over 110 thousand social shares.

“To be honest, we were just expecting to have a little fun, and hopefully bring a few travel enthusiasts back to our website to check out our comparison tools for travel rewards,” said David Boyd, co-founder of Credit Card Compare, a comparison site designed to help Australian consumers compare, research, and apply for credit cards.

“Learning the etymology of your favourite travel destination can offer a fascinating insight into its origins, and the people who first lived there – their character, how they saw themselves, and how they wanted to be regarded. This can add an extra rewarding layer of understanding when visiting as a traveller.

“While we always thought it was a fun and engaging idea, we didn’t ever expect it to nearly break the internet!”

Learning about the heritage of a destination country is one aspect of “cultural heritage tourism”, defined by the National Trust for Historic Preservation as “travelling to experience the places, artefacts, and activities that authentically represent the stories and people of the past”.

‘Culture’ has become an increasingly important marketing tool to attract travellers into any particular country according to Credit Card Compare, which might explain the keen interest in this particular map.

“The plethora of positive responses we received to the map reinforce the importance of and interest in different cultures,” Boyd said.

“Of the thousands of messages, comments, and emails that were generated in response to the hundreds of publications that featured the map, the overwhelmingly majority were also highly positive.

“They demonstrated a sense of pride in respondents’ personal heritages, along with a curiosity about the unique characteristics and individuality of other countries.”

You can see the map on the Credit Card Compare site here.

Edited by Peter Needham

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