Map Search, Map Generators, Map Links ( Ortho Aerial Photos - Topographic Maps - Street Maps )

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NASA World Wind - Google Earth - more info

Maps.com features over 3,500 maps, including travel maps, folded maps, wall maps, atlases, globes, and even digital maps for web and desktop publishing. They also carry travel guides and luggage. If you need a map, Maps.com has it.

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  Interactive Satellite Photos, Aerial Photos, & City Street Maps

Google Maps allows you to search for interactive satellite photos (from Digital Globe) of many cities (worldwide), or street maps (mostly US & Europe), or a hybrid of both. In April, 2006, Google Maps was much improved by the addition of European street maps from TeleAtlas. To get the widest possible view, press F11 to full-screen your browser window.

find a of (city, state OR city, nation):



Yahoo! Maps (broadband version), similar to Google Maps, allows you to search for interactive satellite photos (from i-Cubed) of many cities, or street maps, or a hybrid of both. The satellite images are usually not as detailed as Google's satellite photos. To get the widest possible view, press F11 to full-screen your browser window. Yahoo! Maps for dialup modems

find a of (city, state OR city, nation):



optional: find driving directions in the US or Canada
from the location above to:
optional: and from city 2 to:
optional: and from city 3 to:
optional: and from city 4 to:


Microsoft Live Maps, similar to Google Maps, allows you to search for interactive aerial photos of cities and areas worldwide, or street maps, or a hybrid of both. The aerial images are usually not as detailed as Google's satellite photos. To get the widest possible view, press F11 to full-screen your browser window.

find this (city, state OR city, nation):



NASA's Visible Earth is "a consistently updated, central point of access to the superset of NASA's Earth science-related images, animations, and data visualizations. These images are considered to be public domain and, as such, are freely available to the interested public-at-large, the media, scientists, and educators for re-use and/or re-publication." The results include images from the Terra & Aqua earth observation satellites, and more, at last count totaling 32,120 images, over 45 gigabytes in volume.

find satellite images of:


Flash Earth is an experimental, but functional, browser app that displays satellite/aerial images from your choice of Google Maps, Microsoft Virtual Earth, Yahoo Maps, Ask.com, OpenLayers, and NASA Terra.

TerraFly provides animated "flying" over USGS aerial photos.

MultiMap provides interactive aerial photos and maps of London and other cities, mostly in England & Wales.

  Driving Directions (USA, Canada & Europe)

Google Maps displays driving directions for the US, Canada & much of Europe alongside their usual interactive map & satellite photo display:

find driving directions
from: to:



  European: Driving Directions in Europe

Via Michelin - MapQuest

  World City Street Maps

World: MapQuest - Europe: Via Michelin
Australia: Street Directory - Hong Kong: YPMap

  National Geographic Interactive Maps

The National Geographic Map Machine can find as many as 16 or more types of maps for a given location, including world road maps, maps from satellite photos, topo maps, and census maps of population. Drawbacks: the maps are rather small, and you cannot zoom in as much as you might like to. Enter a place name (city, state, or city, nation, etc.) to get a list, then click on the map you want.

find maps of:

National Geographic Store sells maps and globes, plus DVDs of their fine documentary programs, CD-ROMS, books, magazines, photography gear, VHS videos, travel products, science tools, home decor, and toys and gifts for all ages.



Microsoft Encarta World Atlas

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  Non-Interactive Printable Maps

United Nations Dept. of Cartography provides maps of many (not all) nations in .pdf format, over 100 maps in all. Select the map you need below; it will load in a new window.



USGS Printable Maps of the US can be downloaded free in .pdf or .gif formats, and include a Landsat satellite photo composite (6.32 MB .pdf), political maps including simple state maps, and more.

The CIA World Factbook provides 15 good maps of the world and world regions, in both .pdf and .html format. All are public domain.

The Perry-Castaneda Library Map Collection at the U. of Texas, Austin, has over 2400 Public Domain Maps including political, physical, topographical, economic, relief, and historical maps (all public domain), and the number is still growing.

Weller Cartographic (MapMatrix) offers good, free .pdf maps of Nicaragua, Honduras, El Salvador, Tokyo, Beijing, Rio De Janeiro, US states, much of Canada, and other locations. They request a donation if you can afford it.

The NOAA Historical Map & Chart Project is a searchable directory of free, public domain, downloadable historic maps and oceanic charts. The downloads are typically 6 to 8 MB in size.

This Dynamic Planet, from the USGS, is a 3.3 MB 9-page .pdf which include a large color world map of volcanoes, earthquakes, impact craters, and plate tectonics, and explanatory text.
RandMcNally Travel Store offers road maps and road atlases, wall maps, globes, and world atlases, GPS electronics and software, National Parks passes, luggage and other travel necessities including games and activities, and a variety of gifts.

    Printable Maps of Canada

The Atlas of Canada has free downloadable Reference Maps in .pdf and .html formats, and Map Archives of maps from 1906-1995.

find all exactly any of

the words: in:


advanced search

Natural Resources Canada:
Toporama free online topo maps
All Canada Web Map Services
Canadian Geo Name Server
Geography Network Canada
Canada CGDI Map Directory
Canadian Topo Maps & Air Photos
   fee-based

    Maps of Australia & New Zealand

Australia Highway Map, .pdf
Geoscience Australia Free Data
    GeoAus Map Interface
New Zealand Topo

    Maps of the United Kingdom

Political Map of the UK, .pdf
UK Ordnance Survey: Get-a-Map

    Interactive US Maps

USGS National Map Viewer
USGS National Atlas of the USA
USGS Geologic Map Image Library
USGS GISDATA Map Studio
Geospatial One Stop

    World WMS Web Map Servers

Cornell U. Digital Earth Project
   Interactive Java Digital Earth
ICEDS Euro Data Server
ESA Earth Observation Cubeserv
GLOBE Visualization
Geography Network by ESRI
   links to maps, data, software...
JPL WMS Global Mosaic
Geospatial Databases Search

Maps of India
Web Atlas of Sweden
Ukrainian Map Server
Maps of Mexico
Peter Loud's Maps of: Iraq
    Afghanistan - Kashmir
    Yemen & Somalia - Vietnam
    Indonesia - The Philippines
    The Bahamas - Cuba

    Map & Cartography Links

Odden's Bookmarks 13,800 links
AUS Nat'l Library: Cartographic Links
Clark U. Map Library Links
U. of Iowa Map Server Links
Physical Environment Atlas:
   Earth systems map links

    Geographic Information Services

Digital Grove GIS help & info
Intro to Geographic Info Services
NCSU Libraries GIS Info

See also:
Reference Search & Links
Current News Search
News Archives Search
Newsgroups Search
Photo & Image Search Engines
Government & Military Search
Science Search

National Geographic's Store has great gift ideas.

  Map News




  Interactive Topographic Maps

TopoZone.com has a database of USGS topographic maps of the entire US. Just enter your location, and the map is displayed.

find a map of this type of place: named: in this state:


Also try MapTech Mapserver, which has topo maps, nautical charts, & aeronautical charts.


TerraServer finds USGS topo maps and aerial photos of most places in the United States. There are topo maps, but few photos, of Alaska, and only topo maps of Hawaii. Famous Places List

TerraServer Place Name Search:

street:   city:   state:  

TerraServer Geo Coordinate Search:
Location values for this search are in decimal form, NOT minutes & seconds. All locations you can find maps or photos for in the 48 contiguous states will have a latitude above 24, and a longitude value between -66 (east coast) and -125 (west coast). The sample coordinates already entered lead to a wide view of Monthan AFB, south of Tucson, Arizona, where you might like to zoom in in photo mode and see the thousands of planes in the military aircraft "boneyard" there.

longitude:   latitude:


The US Library of Congress American Memory Map Collections: 1500-2004 include countless classic maps of the US and places around the world, many of which can be downloaded in very high resolutions. The collections are browsable by geographic locations, subjects, creators or titles, and are searchable using the form below:

find : in:

return a maximum of results

search tips


The National Archives of Japan Digital Gallery has historical maps of Japanese provinces.

The David Rumsey Map Collection has over 11,000 maps that are viewable online, primarily rare 18th and 19th century maps of North and South America, plus some of the World, Europe, Asia & Africa.

    World Wind from NASA's Ames Research Center is a freeware (totally free) 3-D virtual globe for your PC, using Landsat satellite imagery, Shuttle Radar Topography Mission data, and USGS maps & aerial ortho photos (like Topozone & Terraserver). You can zoom the image in to any place on Earth from satellite altitude. You can also view the Earth's moon, Mars, Jupiter, and other planets. World Wind 1.3.5 is a 60 MB freeware download. screenshots

    To increase your enjoyment of World Wind, you can download the Landsat images and other data as large packages (e.g., Landsat 7 Level 0 is 359 megabytes), so that the data does not have to download (and you don't need to be online) while you are viewing.

    There are also over 200 free add-ons for World Wind, which let you do things like view world maps, good maps and aerial photos of all of France, or maps of South Africa, or track your position as read from your own PC-connected GPS receiver.

    World Wind help: http://forum.worldwindcentral.com/.

    Google Earth is a free program (which has upgraded versions you must pay for) which is similar to but different from NASA World Wind. NASA World Wind has a vastly superior user interface compared to Google Earth. If you think of NASA World Wind as like riding a nice, light road bicycle, then Google Earth is like sitting in a little red wagon and pushing yourself along with a stick. Google Earth does have a useful "go to" feature, which when used is as if someone came along and gave you push in your wagon to the city you want to see--but you have to push with the stick to find what you want when you get there.
    However, Google Earth allows the viewing of closeup images of many world cities which are not available on NASA World Wind, and also displays current TeleAtlas maps of the US and Europe which are not available on World Wind.

  Acronyms

MrSID = Multi-resolution Seamless Image DB
DOQ = Digital Orthophoto Quadrangles
DOQQ = Digital Orthophoto Quarter Quad.
MDOQ = Mosaicked DOQ
GeoTIFF =Geo Tagged-Image File Format
NAIP = National Agriculture Imagery Prog.

U of Wisc Geoography: acronyms - glossary

  Sources of free US aerial photos (orthophoto imagery)

    "A conventional perspective aerial photograph contains image distortions caused by the tilting of the camera and terrain relief (topography). It does not have a uniform scale. You cannot measure distances on an aerial photograph like you can on a map. An aerial photo is not a map. The effects of tilt and relief are removed from the aerial photograph by a mathematical process called rectification. An orthophoto is a uniform-scale image. Since an orthophoto has a uniform scale, it is possible to measure directly on it like other maps. An orthophoto may serve as a base map onto which other map information may be overlain." --USGS

USGS High Resolution Orthoimagery List mostly .03 meter resolution view & download

state-by-state source list from World Wind Central
ALABAMA
Alabama Air Photo Archive statewide low-res B&W photos from 1942-1970

ARKANSAS
Fayetteville GIS City coverage, BW, 2000, ~1 foot res GeoTIFF, also MrSID, ESRI, DWG
GeoStor - On-Line Mapping NW Arkansas Orthophotography, Color 2004, GeoTIFF or MrSID,
   Pulaski County DigitalGlobe Orthophotography, 2004, GeoTIFF
SAL State Digital Database Caroll County Aerial Photos - BW, 1 foot resolution, MrSID

CALIFORNIA
Napa County GIS free reg required, 04/2002 1-foot, color orthophotos, MrSid
Calaveras County ftp:// 2002 2-foot, MrSID, color April & July 2002
Sonoma County free reg req, April & May 2000 1 & 2-foot res, BW, MrSID for entire county
Davis, CA 2001, 2003
Kern County, CA 2000

COLORADO
City of Fort Collins 1999 & 2002, 1/2 foot, color, MrSID

CONNECTICUT
Hartford area 1998, BW, MrSID
CT State Plane Digital Ortho Quads, 1995, BW, MrSID
1934 Fairchild Aerial Survey entire state, scanned & georeferenced

DELAWARE
map images from the Pomeroy & Beers Atlas 1868 Delaware Geological Survey, GeoTIFF
Geologic maps, limited state coverage, GeoTIFF
State of Delaware 1997 DOQs, 5-meter, JPEG (with ArcView World File)
April 2002 color infrared 1 Meter, must apply for 0.25 meter

FLORIDA
Department of Environmental Protection DOQQs from 1995, 1999 and 2004
Manatee County GIS 2003 1-foot color, MrSID
Lake County 1941, 1998, 2002, 2004

HAWAII
Honolulu and some Oahu coastline ftp:// MrSID, JPEG

IDADHO
Idaho Geospatial Data 1-2 meter, natural color, MrSID, NAIP

ILLINOIS
Des Plaines River Watershed Illinois NR Geospatial Data Clearinghouse 2000, MrSID, BW

INDIANA
county mosaics ftp:// & 2nd server ftp:// 2003 NAIP, 1 meter, color,
   GeoTIFF quads or MrSID (also see Indiana Spatial Data - Aerial Photos

IOWA
Iowa Geographic Map Server 2004 color, 2-meter, NAIP

KANSAS
FSA NAIP 2003/2004, 2-meter, natural color, MrSID
Sedgwick County, Kansas Geo Info Services 1997 BW GeoTIFF, 2000/2003 MrSID, color

MAINE
Maine GIS Data Catalog Spring 2003 1- and 2-foot color, MrSID for southwest Maine; May 2003 1/2 foot color, MrSID for Fort Fairfield; April 2001 1/2 foot color, MrSID for Cumberland County and part of Androscoggin County

MASSACHUSETTS
entire state early 2000s, 0.5-meter, TIFF, MrSID, B&W and color,
   plus scanned topo maps & nautical charts, and more

MINNESOTA
DNR Data Deli 2002, 2003-04 Farm Services Administration color ECW
Land Management Information Center 2002, 2003 NAIP 1-meter, color, MrSID

MISSISSIPPI
MARIS: 2004 NAIP Data 2004 natural color 1-m, MrSID, entire state

MISSOURI
Missouri NAIP Data 2003, infrared, MrSID

MONTANA
Montana State Library NR Info System 1-foot color, MrSID of various cities in Montana
   See this forum post for how to add this to World Wind
City of Missoula 1/2-foot color, MrSID

NEBRASKA
Nebraska FSA Digital Imagery July-August 2003 US Farm Agency color, 1-meter, JPEG
US Farm Agency July-August 2001, color, 2-meter, JPEG
Lancaster & Lincoln County 2002, color, 0.3-meter, JPEG

NEW JERSEY
New Jersey Image Warehouse 2002 1-foot infrared, MrSID for entire state

NEW MEXICO
Bernalillo County ftp:// 1996, 1999, 2001, 2002, 2004 MrSid, color
New Mexico Resource Geo Info older B&W digital orthoquads, 2004 1-foot color, MrSID

NORTH CAROLINA
Wake County 1999 color & BW MrSID

NORTH DAKOTA
Bismarck & Mandan April 2001, 1/2 foot BW MrSID; NAIP 2003 1-meter, color MrSID

OKLAHOMA
statewide 2003 NAIP, color, MrSID

OREGON
Corvallis 1999 & 2004, GeoTIFF, color

PENNSYLVANIA
South-Central Pennsylvania 2003, MrSID, color, 2-foot

RHODE ISLAND
GeoTIFF and MrSID, summer 2003, 1-meter, color

SOUTH DAKOTA
South Dakota Digital Data Base free reg req for 2003-2004 1-meter, color

TEXAS
10 county area around Austin 2002 2-foot, MrSID, color

UTAH
Utah Automated Geo Ref Ctr 2003 2-meter color MrSID, 2004 1-meter color MrSID

WASHINGTON
Spokane ftp:// 2003 NAIP, GeoTIFF, 2-meter, color

WEST VIRGINIA
statewide West Virginia State GIS Tech Ctr, Spring 2003, 2-foot, color, MrSID

  Free Geographic Information Service Software - GIS Freeware

Diva-GIS
    mapper, good with biodiversity data
Forestry GIS (fGIS)
   GIS viewer-query tool & shapefile editor
3DEM
   Terrain Visualization & Flyby Animation
Microdem
   display & merge digital elevation models, satellite pics, scans, GIS data...
GPSU
   manage & map your GPS info
Marplot
   NOAA-EPA mapping app for Mac & Windows
Integrated Data Viewer
   Java-based geoscience data viewer
3D Field
   contour surface plotter, 3-D viewer
ER Viewer
   multi-format viewer, pan-zoom large files
SeeMyDEnc
   chart viewer for Electronic Navigational Charts in S-57, DNC & SENC formats
Open Source GIS
   lists more software
Irfanview
   freeware image viewer & processor

Directory of Geoscience Organizations of the World lists 460 organizations in 169 countries, plus 15 international organizations. From the Geological Survey of Japan, which also provides a nice list of links to geoscience magazines.

TIME Magazine, May 23, 1949, p. 63:

THE PRESS: Geography for Everyman
    When Gilbert Hovey Grosvenor took over the National Geographic in 1899, he likes to recall, the circulation was so small (900) that "I could carry the entire issue on my back." Today, says Grosvenor, who share his magazine's passionate addiction to detail, "A single issue would form a pile more than eight miles high, or 79 piles each as tall as the Washington Monument." In its familiar yellow-bordered, arorn-decorated wrapper, this month's issue reached 2,150,000 living rooms, libraries, throne rooms and dentist's offices from Maine to Monaco.
    This week, in recognition of his responsibility for this fine growth, and in tribute to his 50 years of service, the National Geographic Society will present President and Editor Grosvenor with a special medal at a jubilee celebration in Washington's Constitution Hall.

    What Bell Wrought. At 73, Editor Grosvenor is a frail-looking, energetic man with a neat white mustache, a Phi Beta Kappa key and the manner of a Boston Brahmin. Grosvenor was born (with a twin brother now dead) in Constantinople, where his father was a professor at Robert College. Fittingly enough, from his nursery window the future geographer could see two continents.
    Soon after graduating from Amherst College, Gilbert fell in love with Elsie May Bell, daughter of Telephone Inventor Alexander Graham Bell, who was president of the National Geographic Society. When Bell offered Grosvenor a job on the Geographic, he took it (just to be near "Ellie," whom he soon married) and has been there ever since.
    The turn-of-the-century Geographic was a stodgy scientific journal, written with old-fashioned protentousness, and floundering in debt. Grosvenor stuck to the pattern for six years. One day in 1905, a packet of photographs from Tibet landed on his desk. Grosvenor was fascinated by the rugged Tibetan scenery and the Dalai Lama's palace. On an impulse, he spread the pictures across eleven pages. The issue created a sensation: almost by accident, Grosvenor had discovered how to make geography popular.

    What the Lama Brought. In subsequent issues, Editor Grosvenor has stretched his romantic, unscientific definition of geography to cover everything under (and above) the sun. To the Geographic, geography means kites and cats, ostriches and insanity, the Bagdad market and the Berlin airlift, eruptions of volcanoes, bathyspheres and the stratosphere, fishing, fine arts and the sex life of savages. Peripatetic, insatiably curious Gilbert Grosvenor has written 300 articles and taken 200 of the photographs. He was the first U.S. editor to use natural color photographs (a 24-page spread on China and Korea in 1910).
    He has built the National Geographic Society to a reserve fund of $10 million, mostly from the Geographic's tax-free earnings (it is classed as an educational institution). Besides the magazine, the society also publishes books, bulletins and maps, maintains a 20,000-volume library...
    ...Most articles and "legends" (captions) are written by the studious, well-paid editorial staff of 149. Grosvenor sets the tone, which is frequently florid, sometimes quaint, always polite. Says Grosvenor: "We prefer to print only what is of a kindly nature..."



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