Do you believe that every single inch of our earth is discovered? Certainly not. But scientists are working on it. The concept of exploring the undiscovered regions can send the tremors of thrill to some adventurers. By exploring every inch of the globe, it can give us a better understanding of the planet, its population, species and all the things that are still unknown to us. Here are some unmapped places on the earth that needed to be explored.
Unmapped Places on the Earth
Vale do Javari, Brazil
Known as one of the most isolated parts of the world, according to Mental Floss, probably as many as 14 un-contacted Amazon tribes make their home in this area. It covers a region about the area of Austria—or 33,000 square miles. A campaign was mounted by Brazil’s agency for indigenous families this past March, to ease tensions between two opposing indigenous groups.
By looking at a map of a city, you’ll see streets and squares and roads and houses all symbolized. But in some cities, that transparency is just an illusion, at least in part. As BBC Future points out, in cities like Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, and Lagos, Nigeria, slums are not drawn on maps—because “they aren’t a top preference for those living there.” Also check out the real-life hidden treasures that haven’t found yet.
Sandy Island, South Pacific
Some places do exist but don’t show up on maps, while other places that don’t exist do. One new example is Sandy Island, which BBC reports surface on marine charts and world maps as well as on Google Earth and Google Maps. But when investigators set out to examine the island that’s thought to be located between Australia and New Caledonia, they found it isn’t there, and probably never was. Human mistake, repeated down the years, is thought to be at the mistake—although it’s also probable that the island appeared…then vanished. Check out Australia’s remote regions the Dampier Peninsula!
Yucatan Cenotes, Mexico
This undersea cave system on Mexico’s Yucatan peninsula, thousands of kilometers long, has remained mostly unexplored since the time of the Mayans, and exists on no maps, according to photographer Klaus Thymann. He’s both begun to explore – a hunt not without its risks – and photograph it to bring knowledge that will lead to its preservation, he told The Guardian. The rivers that run through the system “form the aquifer of Yucatán and hold about 11 different ecosystems.” Do check out the best islands in the world to visit once in a lifetime.
Gangkhar Puensum, Bhutan
It’s apparently the highest unclimbed peak in the world, although some people have tried to mount this 10,000-foot peak in Bhutan. Like many tall mountains, this one is unmapped—although unlike other mountains, it remains undiscovered for spiritual reasons. To locals, some regions in the mountains are the shelter of centuries-old Buddhist saints and mountains themselves homes to gods and goddesses. Although climbers aspiring to climb tall peaks like this one could use Google Earth to get an idea of what they’re in for, points out BBC Future, many consider that cheating.
Patagonia, Argentina, and Chile
According to Geospatial World, the Patagonia region, which extends almost to the South Pole, is dotted with rainforests and icebergs so far and antagonistic that they’re practically impossible to map. “With ice fields comparable to those in the Polar Regions,” it notes, mapping “is a challenging and risky task.” Check out the oldest architects in the world and their history.
Northern Forest Complex, Myanmar
After years of financial sanctions against this Southeast Asian country, it actually succeeded in preserving much of its natural forest from development, reports Yale e360. But that seems to be ending, with forest disappearing and with it, many unprotected species. It’s hard to assess the destruction, though, because, with barely any roads in these regions, few people can get in to evaluate what’s going on. That means the forest is likely disappearing before it can even be appropriately mapped.
Cape Melville, Australia
The “lost world” of Cape Melville is an Australian cliff that’s been cut off from investigation by a surrounding wall made of rocks of granite that are hundreds of feet tall. While they’ve adequately protected its internal rainforest environment, it also means the area is practically unlikely to map, writes Geospatial World.
Even in regions where we’ve had actual maps for decades, climate change—which is making rising sea levels, severe storms, and flooding, and all the weathering those events cause—is actually changing the lay of the coastal land as once we knew it. Can our map producers keep up with the rapid-fire changes? Also check out the accidental discoveries that changed the world.
The Ocean Floor
It’s enormous that our planet’s five ocean basins cover 71 percent of the earth’s surface. And although we actually have outlined it, that map is precisely low-res, according to an article in The Conversation. In fact, it’s less precise, even, than our maps of Mars, the Moon, and Venus. That’s because all that troublesome water gets in the way of mapping tools. But oceanographers are working on it.
North Sentinel Island, India
Due to a regional community that’s unfriendly to outsiders, North Sentinel Island, part of the Andaman Island archipelago off the southerly tip of Myanmar, remains and apparently will remain for some time unexplored (by non-Sentinelese) as well as unmapped. It’s also properly off-limits to pretty much all visits.