World of Maps – Ottawa, Ontario - Atlas Obscura

World of Maps

A rare venue to buy specialty maps. 


“Who even buys maps anymore? Everyone has phones!” Lots of people, it turns out.

Opened in the fall of 1994, this oddity in Ottawa’s Wellington West shopping district has been helping adventurers not die while doing awesome (dangerous, fantastic) things for almost 30 years. Long enough, in fact, to be one of the first small businesses in Ottawa to have an online presence.

World of Maps supplies travelers and curious minds with early cartographic facsimiles, maps of the Milky Way galaxy, and even a flat-earth map for those always questioning reality. A sliding wall showcases the most popular maps for easy perusing.

Maps aren’t the only treasures to find inside. Shelves are teeming with books on niche topics like ink-making, foraging, and how to read the night sky, while funky globes spin and illuminate the shop beside old-style navigational tools like compasses, sextants, and “the eye of time.” Even professionals can find something inside, with air and nautical charts, logbooks, and topographic maps.

Really just a great place to get lost in.

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June 14, 2023

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