Google Searches Expose Big Gaps In Geography Knowledge

Bruce Parkinson, Open Jaw

Who is Machu Picchu?

If travel is the best education, it seems many people need to hit the road. Judging by Google tourism searches, a lot of us didn’t listen very well in geography class.

Research by UK travel currency providers The Money Shop has revealed embarrassing gaps in knowledge of the world’s most iconic places. 

Analytics of Google searches from the past 12 months looked at the popular questions typed into the search engine by prospective tourists.  

Nearly 500 queries came from people unaware the Eiffel Tower is in France, where it has remained, stoically stationary, since 1889. One of the biggest travel fails was “Is the Eiffel Tower in Italy?”

An amazing 240 searches asked the eternal question: “Is Mount Everest in Europe?” Straddling the borders of Nepal, China and Tibet, mighty Everest’s location has been largely unmoved for 60 million years.

There were 600 searches for “Who is Machu Picchu?” over the last year alone. Who indeed?

A staggering 840 Google searches asked: “Is the Grand Canyon in Vegas?” That would be convenient, but no.

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