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Posted by on Jan 8, 2014 in Ecuador, Latest Posts, South America | 12 comments

World map tattoo


This post is one I have been dying to share with you all for a long time but was unable to until now. You see my mum had been following my blog and absolutely HATES tattoos and has always tried to discourage me from getting one. I had to wait until I got home to see her face in person when she saw my ink. She loved it of course (really need a sarcasm font).

I have wanted a tattoo ever since I was 17 but had never really known exactly what I wanted until recently. Jen and I had both discussed getting tattoos while we were overseas as a reminder to ourselves of both the trip and how we are when we are travelling. As any of you good travellers know, when we are on the road we seem to be more adventurous, open minded and interested in others as well as a million other good qualities travelling brings out in us. For that reason it became easy to decide on what to get, it had to be travel related.


So with this plan in mind but no idea where to find a good tattooist fate stepped in and showed us the way. We were in a small town in Ecuador called Baños. Here we were staying with a great couple at their hostel Casa del Molino Blanco. Jimmy, who worked there had some really cool tatts and when I asked him where he got them he told me the guy has a studio in town and had one best tattooist in Ecuador the year before. So heading down and booking in and using sign language and spanglish I communicated what it was I wanted. With a 2 week wait we just hung around town waiting for the big day, my first tattoo.


World map tattoo

Getting started

World map tattoo

Getting settled in for an hour and a half

world map tattoo

The finished product

world map tattoo

Close up


When the day came I was surprised to find the tattoo wasn’t too painful. As my whole upper back was getting done I thought I would be sitting there sobbing like a little girl but it was actually ok. The only tender bits were down near the lats. The whole tattoo took about and hour and a half and i’m stoked with the way it turned out. I decided on the immigration stamp with my birthplace and date of birth at the last minute but think it finishes the piece of nicely. This is by far the best $80 i’ve ever spent!

Of course, every traveller I have met through the rest of the trip has asked me if I plan to colour it in of put crosses on it but I think it will get too crowded and messy looking so for now it will stay as is. But it is true what they say about tattoos being addictive and i’m already thinking about more I want to get. Shit I hope my mum doesn’t read this.


world map tattoo

Overlooking Quito, Ecuador


What do you think? Have you ever got a tattoo while travelling? Give us a shout and share your experience with us in the comments section.


  1. When you look at a world map it makes you realize how little of the world you have actually seen. Bit depressing really I find.
    At least you have many more years Ardz than I do to see more of it. Cheers Jill

    • Haha yeah there is a lot out there to see Jill and i’m going to give it my best shot to see as much as I can.

  2. Lol!!!! Loved the last sentence ! Would have loved a photo of your mum in her surprise state hehe – I agree don’t colour it in – it suits your back 🙂 what did Jen get?

    • Haha sadly no photo of that but you can use your imagination i’m sure. Jen got a paper plane on her wrist. I’ll have to put a photo up 🙂

  3. Wow Ardun! I love this tattoo, but I am not sure if I would do the same, although I always wanted to have something similar on my back. I really envy you for this. Gosh, now I keep thinking of having one as well, maybe not that huge, but a tiny map would do :D.

    • Thanks Agness! Be warned once you get one you WILL want more 🙂

  4. This is pretty rad, Ardun! I wonder what you’re initially thinking getting next??

    • Thanks Parvis. I’m thinking a sleeve with symbols that represent places i’ve been but not sure yet.

  5. That looks awesome! I like tattoos but have never committed to getting one as I haven’t loved a design long enough to decide to actually do it. Yours looks great, and I reckon it won’t be your last. Especially for the bargain price of $80!

    • Thanks! I know what you mean. It took a long time for me to finally find what I really wanted. More on the cards for sure!

  6. I love your tattoo! I agree, it looks nice as it is without any crosses. And wow, that’s amazing for just $80!

    I got a tattoo last summer after wanting to get one for a long time. I knew I wanted a travel themed one and thought about a world map but instead I got one with GPS coordinates of my fav place in the world. 😛 I was scared of pain as well but it actually wasn’t as painful as I expected!

    • Thanks Michelle! The GPS idea is a good one. Care to share the location? Any plans for more travel tatts in the future?

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