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Maps and Atlases

World - General Maps

World Land Area Map

This section of the Geospatial Resources research guide lists resources that cover the world in general or that cover many different subjects. For resources that emphasize a specific subject look under the appropriate subject in the Geospatial Resources research guide.

See also the International Development--Atlases and Maps research guide.


  • Americas--1:250,000 (Pan American Institute of Geography and History) (Map G 3290 s250 P3) Map series at a scale of 1:250,000 published by individual Latin American countries and coordinated by the Pan American Institute of Geography and History. An index of available maps is located in the map vertical filing cabinet.
    • ArcGIS Online (ESRI) Includes over 45,000 map data layers that can be displayed. Geographic extent extents from world layers to specific geographic areas. The basic collection of world basemaps, reference maps and specialty maps includes layer for topography, terrain, imagery, shaded relief, boundaries, transportation and other topics. .
  • International Map of the World (print copies available in Map G 3200 s1000 U5) Series of 700 maps of the world at a scale of 1:1,000,000.
  • Jet Navigation Charts (US National Imagery and Mapping Agency) (Map G 3201 P6 s2000 U5) Series of aeronautical charts of the world at a scale of 1:2,000,000 showing topographic features by shaded relief. See index in the map vertical filing cabinet in the Library or TPC, ONC, JNC and GNC Charts of the World (Omni Resources).
  • Joint Operations Graphic (US National Imagery and Mapping Agency) (Map G 3200 s250 U5) Series at a scale of 1:250,000. Library has coverage mainly of Europe.
    • Map Maker Interactive (National Geographic Society) Series of interactive maps that display physical, political, or thematic layers for the world and continents.
    • Nationmaster.com (NationMaster) Generate maps, charts and graphs using over 4,500 statistical datasets that are listed under 22 major themes, e.g, agriculture, crime, energy, health, transportation, etc. Choropleth maps are viewed on a world base.
    • National Geographic Maps on CD-ROM (National Geographic Society) 1998 (Atlas G 1 N273 1998 - available on Geospatial Computer in the Library) Collection of all 535 fold-out maps included in National Geographic Magazine.

    • OpenStreetMap A "wikipedia" for maps that provides free geographic data such as street maps. You can add location data with GPS devices or from free satellite imagery; upload it; add names and other tags; and post your map.
    • Operational Navigation Chart (University of Texas Perry-Castaneda Library Map Collection) Series of aeronautical charts of the world produced by the US National Imagery and Mapping Agency at a scale of 1:1,000,000 that shows topographic features by shaded relief and 1,000 foot contouring. Also available interactively on ArcGis Online.

    • Tactical Pilotage Chart (University of Texas Perry-Castaneda Library Map Collection) Series of aeronautical charts of the world at a scale of 1:500,000 produced by the US National Imagery and Mapping Agency. Elevation is shown by 500-foot contours and color tints. Presence of vegetation shown on some maps.
    • World Basemap (ESRI) Interactive map allows one to create and print a map for any area of the world. Data is derived from VMap Level 0 (1:1m) for the entire world and VMap Level 1 (1:250,000) for parts of the world. Click on the "ArcExplorer Web" button to launch this application.
  • World Map Server (Demis) Interactive map allows one to create custom maps for any area of the world using public domain vector and raster datasets.
  • Worldmapper (University of Sheffield and University of Michigan) Collection of thematic maps of the world with countries re-sized on each map in proportion to the map subject portrayed. Excel datafiles, pdf images and .tiff images are available for each map.

World - Regional and Country Maps

  • Regions (Sites and resources that focus on maps for a specific region of the world)
    • Africa South of the Sahara: Selected Internet Resources: Maps (Karen Fung and Africa Studies Association) Links to web sites with African maps that can be viewed online or purchased.
    • Americas--1:250,000 (Pan American Institute of Geography and History) (Map G 3290 s250 P3) Map series at a scale of 1:250,000 published by individual Latin American countries and coordinated by the Pan American Institute of Geography and History. An index of available maps is located in the map vertical filing cabinet.
    • Maps (LANIC--Latin American Network Information Center) Contains links to regional and individual country maps from Latin America.
    • Maps of Eastern Europe and CIS Countries: Topography and Main Locations (UN Environment Programme)
    • Relief Web Map Centre (ReliefWeb) Contains reference and thematic maps concerning current and past humanitarian emergencies and natural disasters. Search by region, country or type of emergency.

  • Multiple Countries (Sites and resources that contains collections of maps for many individual counties of the world)
    • CIA Maps and Atlases (US Central Intelligence Agency) (Docs PrEx 3.10/4) Series includes general maps at various scales for each country.
    • Digital Topographic Map Sets (UC Berkeley Earth Sciences and Map Library) Contains index graphics and scanned images of Soviet Union topographic map sets for individual countries at scales of 1:50,000 to 1:200,000.
    • Encarta Dynamic Atlas (Microsoft) View geopolitical maps for regions and individual countries of the world. Interactive atlas allows you to zoom and pan.
    • Infoplease Atlas (Family Education Network) Includes maps for individual countries, continents and regions. Maps are from Magellan Geographic.
    • Lonely Planet Destinations (Lonely Planet) Click on a continent and then a country to display a map for the country. Clicking on the country map will display travel information.
    • Map Machine: Countries and Continents (National Geographic Society)
    • Maps and Geographic Information Resources (United Nations Cartographic Section) Contains maps of individual countries.
    • Maps Since 1960 (US Library of Congress. American Memory Project) Collection of mostly CIA maps of individual countries.
    • National Geographic Maps on CD-ROM (National Geographic Society) 1998 (Atlas G 1 N273 1998--Available at Pillar B) Collection of all 535 fold-out thematic, regional, and country maps that were included in the National Geographic magazine from 1889 to 1997. There is a built-in index but you can also use the NGS Publications Index to identify maps in the cd-rom collection. Search using a "[geographic or subject theme] and map", e.g., "Everest and map". Most maps in the cd-rom collection are also available in paper format and are individually cataloged in the HSU Library Catalog.
    • Oddens' Bookmarks: Browse Maps and Atlases (Oddens) Directory of links to thousands of current and historical maps listed by region and by individual country.
    • Perry-Castaneda Library Map Collection. Includes a directory of links to country and regional map sites.; and a collection of images of world, regional, and country maps originally produced by the CIA and other government agencies.
    • World Atlas (Maps.com) Contains a political and physical map for each country.
    • World Atlas (MapQuest) Contains maps for each country, continent, U.S. state, and Canadian province.
    • World Atlas: Maps and Geography of the World (About.com Guide to Geography) Directory of links to websites with maps and other geographic information about individual countries.
    • World Country Maps/Country Satellite Images (Geology.com) For each continent and country includes a general reference map and a satellite image map.
    • World Factbook (US Central Intelligence Agency) Contains a small-scale map for each country and a small section of "General Reference" maps.
    • Yahoo: Maps by Region (Yahoo) Directory of maps listed alphabetically by country.

  • Individual Countries (in addition to the above sites and resources)
    • "National Atlases." There are many atlases in the Atlas Collection which graphically characterize a country. Use the Browsing Guide to Atlas and Map Call Numbers if you want to browse the shelves or use the techniques listed under Atlases on the Atlas and Map Collection page to search the HSU Library Catalog for specific countries.
    • Atlas of Canada (Natural Resources Canada) Site also includes reproductions of the first five editions of the national atlas that date back to 1906.