The Museum’s cartographical collection is extremely rich and varied. The bulk of it is made up of over 2,800 navigational charts from the 15th to the 20th centuries. The oldest are hand-drawn and hand-coloured manuscripts, generally on parchment; starting in the 17th century, charts printed on paper start to become popular. The geographical areas most commonly represented generally correspond with the regions of the globe most closely tied to our history: the Mediterranean, the coast of Europe and the Atlantic. The other oceans of the world are not as well-represented, but nevertheless the collection covers almost the entire planet. The oldest is the Vallseca chart from 1439, which is accompanied by a significant collection of maps from the Majorcan school of the 16th and 17th centuries. More modern pieces include charts that are still used, and charts containing marks or annotations from their active use have special value. With all of this, our collection includes representations of seas and coasts spanning more than five centuries, in some cases almost without interruption.
Nevertheless, this collection is not made up solely of charts: it also includes other objects like globes, pilot books, atlases, drawings and any other sort of geographical representation related to the discovery of the world.