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Topographic Maps

Topographic maps are maps that provide extensive close-up detail about a place. Now, some are available online for free.

Topographic Maps - Overview of Topographic Maps
Since the 1600s, topographic mapping has been an integral part of a country's cartography. These maps (called topo maps for short) remain among the most valuable maps for government and the public alike.

USGS Store
This USGS site provides a very user-friendly interface for browsing and purchasing topographic maps of the United States. Topographic maps can be downloaded for free in PDF format by going to the "Map Locator" on the site.

How to Read a Topographic Map
Eight simple steps to help you read a topographic map.

Topographic Map Symbols
This United States Geological Survey sites provides the key to all symbols utilized on USGS topographic maps.

Toporama provides topographic maps of Canada, courtesy of Natural Resources Canada.

TopoZone provides every USGS topographic map, orthophotomap, and aerial photograph in the entire United States online for free. Search by place name.

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