Maps are an integral part of tourism marketing and creating a custom Google Map is one of the easiest ways to highlight specific parts of a destination. Maps can be made for thematic itineraries, hotels or even for things to see or do around a convention center. They can range from being rather simple with a just an address, website and/or description for each venue to something more complex featuring photos, videos and blog posts.
Tourism Queensland ran a Best Job in the World campaign in 2009 and the winner, Ben Southall, has embarked on another Queensland adventure, The Best Expedition in the World, which started in May and will be completed in September. A Google Map was created to show his 1600km kayak journey from the Town of 1770 to Cooktown, retracing the route of Captain James Cook.
The journey is an incredible feat on its own but the Best Expedition in the World Map is a mashup of Flickr photos, YouTube videos, blog posts and breathtaking 360° views.
Another innovative example of Google Maps is the Illinois Route 66 Scenic Byway’s Facebook* page. Various parts of Route 66 have been decommissioned over the years and some of it has even been replaced with Interstate 55 so taking a journey on the Mother Road can be a challenge when it comes to signage, especially in the Chicagoland area. The Facebook tab not only highlights the route but it also uses layers of maps to create itineraries.
How are you using Google Maps to highlight your destination? What other innovative examples are out there?