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Getting There By Car, Boat, Or Plane: A Guide To Maps

Cartography is the science and art of making and reading maps. According to official records, maps were first used around 2,300BC. The countries where cartography first began include Babylon, Greece and Asia. Traditional cartography was used in ancient times and they looked like simple drawings on papers. Today, cartography has gone digital, even on the Internet to help derive more applications and advantages from the study of cartography.


  • Map reading for kids: The site is great for kids to learn a lot about map reading. Subjects such as latitude and longitude can be learnt with ease.
  •  Elements of cartography: The site contains the basics of every map.
  • Glossary: The site has a compilation of defined cartographic terms.
  • General maps: The site contains several general maps arranged under categories/regions.


  • History of maps and cartography: The earliest maps were created around 2,300 BC. This implies that cartography would have started around then.
  • Cartographic history: The first record of map science can be traced back to the time when Africa (particularly the River Nile) was explored.
  • History of cartography: This site discusses the history of cartography based on certain regions such as China and Rome   
  • The history of cartography: This site focuses on the development of early maps such as the Babylonian map of the world and The Catal-Hyük map.
  • History of map making: Map making can be said to have evolved independently in different parts of the world such as China and the Middle East.




  • Types of maps: The types of maps explained on this site are the proportional symbol map. There are also links to other kinds of maps such as Choropleth Maps, Cartograms and Isarithm Maps.
  • Tools of the geographer: One of the basic tools of the geographer is the map. The geographer has to understand the different kinds of maps such as the dot map, reference map and thematic map.
  • Map types: Other types of maps include the plat map, interment maps and more.
  • Thematic maps: Thematic maps are specifically used in statistics. This site has several examples of thematic maps.
  • Topographic maps: Topographic maps are used to learn the earth’s features. Hence, they are used in camping, canoeing or hunting.
  • Weather maps: Weather maps are used to show temperature, precipitation, fronts and air masses of a region.
  • Interpreting weather maps: This site explains some symbols used in making weather maps.


  • Basics for map design: While designing maps, it is important to consider the following: the audience, simplicity of the map and more.
  • Making maps: Map design involves understanding the basic tools, the layout, type on maps and other important factors.  
  • Map design: This site explains some basic points to know before starting a map design.
  • Map symbols: This site discusses three symbols used in map design, namely: Cuttings and Embankments; Visual Clutter in the Topographic Base of Geological Maps and Color vs. Visual Texture for Area Symbols.
  • Tips for making vector maps: Very important points such as editing, coloring and resizing a vector map are discussed on the site.