Jonas Weckschmied

Google Maps "Urban Escape Plan"

heimat Berlin
lead ux design


Escape the urban jungle. Jump straight into nature. Google Maps sends all city dwellers into the nature with the urban escape plan. The user can be located via the website and is immediately shown the best places – always close by and usually secret.


Google Maps is often perceived as a pure online map service. A platform where you usually quickly look up a place, a route or perhaps take a look at the surroundings of your next home via Street View. Google Maps can be more than that, especially when it comes to creating time-outs in everyday life. After all, who hasn’t experienced it: a stressful day at the office, a head full of things to do and the weekend still nowhere in sight?


Bloggers and photographers from all over Germany have told us their favourite places in nature. The small parks at the back of the pond or the best sunset view in town. It’s all there. A clearing in the forest to escape from everyday life or a small green spot in the middle of the city houses. The green locations finally get the city dwellers out of the grey.
To get into the green as quickly as possible and discover the best spots, the website was developed. The user can simply be located or enter their location directly and immediately see several locations in the countryside. He/she can swipe left and right between the spots. Once the user has decided on a spot, the quickest route via Google Maps takes him or her from the spot out into nature. A total of 180 locations can be discovered. Photographed, located, described by the discoverers and hashtagged #insgruene, these spots have become permanent Google Pins – to capture Germany’s most beautiful getaway spots in the future.


Blogs and newspapers all over Germany picked up on the initiative and encouraged their readers to escape to the countryside. From large national media to small local newspapers and city news, journalists and readers began sharing their favourite tips and secret green stashes. The initiative increased website traffic by 1.3 million visits, with each user spending an average of 59 seconds on the platform.