The reason why certain countries look bigger or smaller than others is that of something called the Mercator Projection. Putting a 3D planet on a two-dimensional world map was something of a challenge for early cartographers. So a Flemish geographer and cartographer named Gerardus Mercator came up with a solution for the most accurate world map. In 1569 he designed an atlas that could be accurately used for navigation purposes. Still, the downside was that his system distorted the size of objects depending on their position relative to the equator. Because of this, landmasses like Antarctica and Greenland appeared much bigger than they actually are. Though there are around 40 types of map projections, from conical to polyhedral and retroazimuthal, depicting the true size maps, this one is still used the most because of its convenience and simplicity. And none of these projections can be titled ‘the real world map,’ just because they all depict the same Earth through a different lens.

To show how incorrect our understanding of countries by size is, a website called lets you move landmasses into different locations. Bored Panda has played a bit on world maps with countries provided by this site, and this is what we found.


US Moved Down Next To Australia Looks Unbelievably Small

The True Size


Russia On The Equator Is Not A Giant Bear Anymore

the true size


If Romania Was An Island In The Arctic Ocean

The True Size


Australia Is Way Bigger Than You May Think – It Covers Almost The Whole Of Europe

The True Size


If Brazil Was In Asia It Would Be Massive

The True Size


Indonesia Would Spread Almost Across The Whole Of Russia

The True Size


Greenland Is Not So Big When Compared To USA And Brazil

The True Size


When You Move Canada To South America

The True Size


California Moved Onto The UK Shows They’re Quite Similar In Size

The True Size


China Placed On Top Of Russia

The True Size


Australia Moved Onto North America Becomes REALLY Big

The True size


Japan Can Stretch Almost Across Canada

The True Size


Antarctica Is Not So Much Larger Than Brazil

The True Size


This Is How India Changes As You Move It North

The True Size


Canada Moved Down Onto The US Reveals That Both Countries Are Pretty Much The Same Size

The True Size


How This All Works


USA Compared To Europe

The True Size


If Poland Was An Island In The Norwegian Sea

The True Size


The US Could Easily Cover The Whole Of Canada But It Becomes Much Smaller When It’s Moved South

The True Size


When You Move Mexico Onto Greenland Its Size Increases Dramatically

The True Size


If Lithuania Was An Island In The Barents Sea And Artic Ocean

The True Size


Moving UK North And South Reveals How It Actually Compares To Other Countries


Democratic Republic Of The Congo When You Move It North

The True Size


How The Size Of Russia Changes As You Move It South

The True Size

#25 #27 Tiny Iceland Compared To New York


Tiny Iceland Compared To Its Giant Neighbor Greenland

The True Size


Let Me Just Make This Easy; The Issue Is Peters (accurate) Vs Mercator (inaccurate).


Alaska Doesn’t Seem So Big When Compared To 48 Contiguous States

The True Size


Texas Moved On Top Of Alaska Shows That They’re Almost The Same Size

The True Size


You Cannot Make Legitimate Size Comparison Unless You Are Doing So On An Equal Area Map


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