A few days late, but Happy Christmas! Funnily enough, I don't typically get travel themed gifts from people. I have relatives who always get me things that are stuck in a certain theme, but they haven't latched on to the fact that I am travel obsessed. A few years back, my brother/sister-in-law got me and my husband an awesome travel map that's worth its own post sometime, but this year, my stepfather takes the prize for most enjoyed gift.
He got me a book of transit maps of the world. And to be honest, it sounds boring when you type it, but I LOVE IT. It has the rail/metro/subway/etc. maps from about 250 cities worldwide, including some places I've never heard of before (note to self: learn more about Brazil, what is there outside of Salvador, Brasilia and Rio?).
I think the reason that I love it so much is that when I travel, figuring out how to get around is part of the fun. Then, when your plan works seamlessly and you are transiting around with ease in a foreign city, it's even more satisfying. There's also something artistic about the design of some of the cities with all the different colored lines laid out. Actually, there are a few maps that were taken a redesigned by an artist in the front of the book
Take a look here at the publisher's site: Transit Maps of the World
I also enjoy the description of the author's background: "Mark Ovenden is a transport historian, broadcaster, design consultant, and the author of the bestselling Transit Maps of the World. He currently resides in London."