Is there a high-quality free mapping service for Germany comparable to the great IGN maps of France available for free on Geoportail?

I am looking for something that can be used to plan hikes and discover new areas.

  • 4
    you might have more luck on gis.stackexchange.com ?
    – Mark Mayo
    Jan 17 '18 at 22:15
  • @MarkMayo If it's on-topic here, I'd like to keep it for a while. I can always delete and re-post on GIS.SE later.
    – Szabolcs
    Jan 17 '18 at 22:33
  • 1
    Oh I totally left it open asits still good here, just was a suggestion :D
    – Mark Mayo
    Jan 18 '18 at 10:53
  • 1
    "High quality" is open ended and opinion based. Is OpenStreetMap high quality enough? Jan 19 '18 at 10:39

Mapping is done by the federal states (Bundesländer), so you have to look at the respective land surveying office (Landesvermessungsamt).

E.g. for Bavaria, there is the Landesamt für Digitalisierung, Breitband und Vermessung Bayern, and they link to their own mapping site, the BayernAtlas.

You can find links to all Landesvermessungsämter at the end of this Wikipedia article.

An overview of the mapping sites (2013): Die Bundesländer und ihre Online-Kartendienste für topografische Karten.

  • Thanks! I think this was the key piece of information for finding good maps.
    – Szabolcs
    Jan 19 '18 at 10:01

I don't think there is something official similar in Germany. You can use Kompass, which use OSM data. I don't know where they get the elevation model from though.


As user24582 wrote, official maps are available in many places. The best freely available map data (available online, using smartphone apps or a (Garmin) GPS device) is based on Openstreetmap - crowdsourced maps. In most areas the data is by far better than other online maps, often even better than official maps which tend to be a bit outdated and not so much focused on tourists.

There are many OSM-based themed maps available, specializing on different use cases, such as hiking, car-routing or even horse riding.

For offline use (smartphone, GPS) my personal recommendation would be http://freizeitkarte-osm.de/ .

For online use I recommend https://hiking.waymarkedtrails.org/ which includes many hiking routes.

Here you can find a comparison of different OSM based maps with Google maps to get an impression of the level of detail available: http://tools.geofabrik.de/mc/#14/50.1096/8.6855&num=4&mt0=mapnik&mt1=google-map&mt2=public_transport&mt3=hike_bike

  • I am aware of OpenStreetMap, but I found it unreliable in the past, and in the remote areas where I compared various maps, it had by far the least detail. Compare OSM vs IGN. I can tell you that the IGN one has errors (I've been there), but it is still far better than OSM. I realize this may not be the case in every area. Maybe Germany has a more active OSM community.
    – Szabolcs
    Jan 19 '18 at 16:39
  • The German community is the most active one world-wide. Give it a try! It sure depends on the area of the country, but all the interesting places are mapped well, according to my experience.
    – asdfex
    Jan 19 '18 at 16:49
  • German OSM maps even cover the names of forest tracks: openstreetmap.org/#map=16/52.1322/10.5156
    – Janka
    Jan 19 '18 at 20:33

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