Jewellery Guide: Why give compass jewellery as a gift

Jewellery Guide: Why give compass jewellery as a gift

April 06, 2021

Ever since we started navigating the planet, the compass has been a symbol for travellers around the world.

This makes compass jewellery the perfect travel gift for avid travellers in your life.

The compass symbol is ideal for people from all walks of life whether they are male or female. It is for travellers, adventurers, free spirits and frequent fliers.

In this post, we are sharing the history of the compass symbol, its meaning and symbolism and 8 reasons why compass jewellery makes an amazing travel gift.

The history of the compass

Magnetic compasses were first used in China in the 11th or 12th century as a navigation device mainly for sea navigation by sailors and explorers.

By the end of the 13th century, their use for navigation had spread to Western Europe and the Middle East.

In their earliest use, they were likely used as a backup for when the sun, stars or other landmarks could not be seen due to weather. As compasses got better and better explorers started to rely more on compasses to navigate and they become an essential navigation tool. 

The design and construction of magnetic compasses have changed drastically over the centuries but the concept of how they work is still the same. Magnetic compasses consist of a magnetised needle that is allowed to rotate so that it lines up with the Earth’s magnetic field. The ends point to the magnetic north and south.

As engineers and scientists discovered more about the earth’s magnetic field, compasses that show all four directions (and everything in between) were designed. 

These days it has become super trendy to display compass symbolism and even specific coordinates on your body through clothing, jewellery and tattoos. 

compass jewellery

Why give compass jewellery as a gift

The ability for a compass to forever point north is what makes it so symbolic, especially for travellers. You know if you have a compass you can never really get lost.

This gives the compass significant meanings and symbolism which make it such a great gift for travellers. Here are 8 reasons why to give compass jewellery as a gift:


The compass provides a sense of comfort and safety as you know you can always rely on it to point you in the right direction no matter where you are. Whether it is in the ocean, hiking through mountains or exploring unfamiliar roads. It is like the North Star, celebrated as a symbol of guidance.


Having a compass means you will always know which way you are facing. This means that you can always orient yourself and get your bearings no matter how unfamiliar the location is that you are in.


The word ‘compass’ comes from the Latin word com which means together and passus which means step. This combines to mean to step together or travel together. By its very definition compass means to travel. This means it is an amazing symbol for travellers and those who travel together or meet each other on their journey.


A compass is a device that shows you which direction you need to go and can take you there without anyone else. This signifies independence and willingness to push yourself out of your comfort zone and go at it alone. Know that no matter what happens you will always find your way.


Since ancient times when the compass was first created, it has been viewed as a symbol of safety and protection. It can always guide you home safely and protect you from getting lost.


The compass is seen as a device that will bring luck to someone who is lost by guiding them in the right direction. It motivates you by showing you the path ahead. The direction of north symbolises progression and advancement which is the direction that the compass shows.


Modern forms of navigational compasses often relate to the four directions of north, east, south, and west which were significant in Celtic and Chinese cultures. Wearing compass jewellery is a symbol of being in harmony with the four directions or as a way to actively seek balance in life..


Compass symbols look amazing and they are very trendy. They can be worn by men and women and there is a lot of variety of compass jewellery available.

compass jewellery

When to give compass jewellery

Being such a versatile symbol full of meaning, compass jewellery is perfect for almost all occasions. They are universal and ideal for men, women and children

Here are some ideas for when to give compass jewellery to someone:

  • As a leaving present for someone moving overseas, going on a trip or having a gap year
  • As a birthday or Christmas present for someone who loves to travel
  • As a birthday or Christmas present for a frequent flier
  • As a graduation gift to signify finding one’s path in life and moving in the right direction.
  • As a Valentine’s day gift to a loved one, symbolising that you will always be there for them and you would be lost without them.
  • As a wedding gift to your other half to symbolize starting a new chapter, heading in the right direction together.

Off the Map Compass Jewellery

Off The Map Jewellery has a range of beautiful and unique compass pendants. There is a variety of designs, finishes, sizes and chains which come in either solid gold or silver. There is a compass pendant to suit every traveller, whether they are male or female, bold or reserved. 


A skinny dog tag pendant engraved with latitude & longitude coordinates with a Travel Safe silver compass pendant.  One side has the words Travel Safe -, Adventure Awaits written around the border and the reverse is a simple polished cut-out compass. We also have an option with a blue or silver enamel finish on the front.

This lightweight & skinny silver dog tag pendant is engraved with your coordinates and can also be engraved on the back.

compass jewellery


This compass pendant is the same as the one above except it has a long silver tag pendant (as opposed to dog tag pendant) engraved with your latitude & longitude coordinates and can also be engraved on the back & given a contemporary matte finish.

The reverse is a simple polished cutout compass.

For help finding your co-ordinates visit our help page here.


This small-sized compass pendant is handcrafted in solid 9ct rose gold and features a bold compass.

With a highly polished back for your engraved message, you can choose from a lightweight trace chain or spiga style rope chain.


A simple disc pendant engraved with a compass symbol and your own message on the border.

The back is blank or can also be engraved with a message to make it a unique travel gift for men or women.

Choose from a loose leather or vegan cord - cut it to your length for a bohemian look that's perfect for travellers.  A silver trace chain is a secure and strong alternative for the journeys ahead.


This stunning compass pendant features a bold compass. The message on the border reads 'Travel Safe - Adventure Awaits', bringing positive energy and well wishes to the wearer. The pendant comes in two sizes, large and small, making it ideal for both men and women.

The back is blank and can be engraved with a personal message. 

Hand polished with either a polished, brushed matte or blackened antique finished front.  Choose from a loose leather or vegan cord or silver curb chain.

Find all of these beautiful pieces and more travel-inspired jewellery on our website

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