Ibn Battuta + Google Maps

This web assignment is Google History Maps Story, and I chose Abu Abdullah Mohammad Ibn Battuta, more commonly referred to as simply Mohammad Ibn Battuta or just Ibn Battuta. (Fun fact: ibn means “son” in Arabic, so “ibn Battuta” means “son of Battuta”; this is my three years of Arabic at work, folks!)

It was a mistake.

I knew this guy was well-traveled, but YIKES. I clicked on the Wiki page and almost cried.

SO. In order to not go insane by spending 5 hours making google maps of this man (did you know that there’s only so many places you can put in at a time?), I made an executive decision to only do the Maghreb, which consists of most of North/Northwest Africa.  This way, I got more detailed maps as well.

The trip map for the Maghreb still took two maps to make, so here’s the first one:

web assignments ibn batutta 1

He started in Tangier, Morocco and made his way to Sfax, Tunisia. Then, he made his way back:

ibn batutta 2

My only beef with google maps is that it doesn’t tell you the order of the steps. Ibn Battuta went in a pretty straight line for the first map, but starts to show his wanderlust in the second. So, from the Wikia:


Each of those links should take you to the page of the place named, if you feel like being sucked down the rabbit hole of places Ibn Battuta visited.

Confession time: this assignment is worth 4 1/2 stars, and I think it might be partially my fault. When I went to rate it to a more appropriate 3 stars, it told me I had already rated it. Now I’m afraid I accidentally clicked on it somehow, and since it’s only been rated by three other people, I may have hyper-inflated it. Oops. Feel free to rate it yourselves and course-correct.

I used Google Maps for this, like it says on the label. Then, I screenshotted and cropped in paint. I was going to try and merge the maps somehow, but I couldn’t get the two to scale the same. Plus, I realized I have 0 clue how on earth to merge them. So that didn’t happen.

Just.. can you imagine traveling as much as this guy? In a time where the only method of transport was a camel/horse/animal? It couldn’t have been very comfortable, but geez would it have been worth it. BRB, gonna go see if the library has a copy of his memoirs, “The Travels of Ibn Battuta”.

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