The Habsburg Empire is coming! Pre-order now your copy of our second guidebook!

From the idea to the first book

Extinguished Countries has been founded by the Italian journalist and travel writer Giovanni Vale. The idea is to propose travel guidebooks to countries that no longer exist, discovering all the things we share from our common past, which shape our current identities. In early 2020, this idea is put to the crowdfunding test. The project launches on Kickstarter and, in only three weeks, gathers the support of almost 600 people and raises over 25,000 euros. After a year of hard work, in the summer of 2021 we printed the first guidebook in the ExCo series: Republic of Venice.

Click on the video below to watch our first campaign video.

The ExCo project invites its community to delve into the concepts of identity, borders, and nations. By emphasizing our similarities and celebrating our differences, we strive to forge bridges connecting all people across the globe. To achieve this goal, we’ve employed a variety of storytelling techniques, including guidebooks, podcasts, and a curated library of thought-provoking books. These resources investigate the core principles of our project, exploring the concepts of self and other, the teachings of history, and the complexity of our identity.


In today’s world, humanity confronts myriad challenges that threaten to divide us. At ExCo, we believe that understanding the past is essential to charting a successful path forward. Through the stories of the Extinguished Countries, we gain valuable insights into what works and what doesn’t, and discover that we have much in common with our neighbors.


Our experiences have taught us that promoting sustainable tourism, protecting cultural heritage, and conducting rigorous historical research are key to building a brighter future. These principles thus inspire and guide our work.


Would you like to collaborate with us and help us build a more united world? Write us an email at explore@extinguishedcountries.con and hop on board!

Meet with our team members

Giovanni Vale
Journalist, Zagreb correspondent for numerous Italian and international media outlets and author of eight travel guides for various European publishers. Giovanni conceived and created Extinguished Countries and wrote the texts for this guide.
Chiara Marchesini

Our newest member, Chiara joined the team in March 2022 as assistant director. She is in charge of communication and partnerships. If you want to collaborate with us, reach out to her at

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Paul Prescott

Award-winning photographer and filmmaker and founder of Amazing Aerial Agency and WE’RE THOSE production company. Paul directed the Extinguished Countries crowdfunding video

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Ivana Pogačić

Interpreter and translator of English, French and Croatian, Ivana co-conceived Extinguished Countries, supervised the production of the guide and translated most of the book into English.

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Iva Hrvatin
A Croatian designer, Iva usually works on serious total brand design projects, but occasionally likes to express herself with humorous drawings. She designed the maps and illustrations.
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Felipe Trentini Ullmann
Brazilian filmmaker, on the road since 2017. Felipe has cycled and filmed over 8,000 km across Europe, and he shot the Extinguished Countries crowdfunding video.
Julien Trambouze
Journalist at Radio France, author of radio reports for RFI and RTS, ecology expert and teacher of radio journalism. Julien produced the Extinguished Countries podcast.
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Hrvoje Živčić
Croatian typographer and graphic designer, and author of various typeface designs and editorial projects. Hrvoje designed the logo, visual identity and layout of the book.