Most backpackers will have spent their entire lives staring longingly at a map of the world. Some even have it tattooed onto their skin.

It turns out the world map would look very different if it were changed to reflect where most people are heading on their holidays. That's exactly what travel agency Travel Republic has done, and here's the result:

Map of the world resized by destination

Giants of the regular map, like Africa, South America, and Russia, are curiously diminished, while backpacker favourite Thailand finds itself swollen to gargantuan size.

The map was calculated based on the monthly average search volumes for destinations, with some like Cuba only being popular at a certain time of year, while others like Spain and Mexico drew visitors year-round. 

The top five destinations appearing bloated on the map are Cuba, Greece, Mexico, Spain, and Thailand. It's no coincidence that all of them are typically hot and sunny. Here's a regular map of the world, for the sake of comparison:

Regular map of the world

It's worth noting that these maps have been produced based only on searches for holidays via one travel agency. Indeed, the resized map would likely look very different were it based on the preferences of young backpackers and gap year travellers. Nevertheless, it's interesting to see the potential strain that popularity could put on small countries like Iceland and Cuba. 

Story via Mail Online.