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Maps & Atlases

Information and resources about the UBC map collection.

Vancouver and British Columbia Maps

The UBC Library Map Collection has a large collection of print maps related to Vancouver and British Columbia. You can also find online resources in this guide.


 British Columbia

BC Fire Insurance Maps are detailed maps of cities and municipalities that indicate which buildings were insured. The following guide helps users find the BC fire insurance maps in the Library's collection.

Topographic Maps of Canada

The UBC Library has an extensive collection of Canadian Topographic Maps produced by Natural Resources Canada. For information on what topographic maps are, see the Types of Map section (LINK).

The National Topographic System (NTS) of Canada uses a standard numbering system to make the map sheets in the series easily identifiable. These are known as NTS numbers. If you know the NTS number of the geographical area you're looking for, you can find the map sheet quickly as well as identify adjacent map sheets. To find the NTS number, consult an index map or the NTS website below.

There are two standard scales: 1:50,000 and 1:250,000. Other topographic map scales include 1:25,000, 1:100,000, 1:125,000, and 1:500,000.

Indigenous Collection

UBC Library has a particular focus on Indigenous people of British Columbia. Indigenous maps and atlases can be found in the Xwi7xwa Library, Rare Books and Special Collections, and in Koerner Library.

Some of the resources available in the Map Collection in Koerner include:

The following research guides can help you find more Indigenous resources, both online and in the UBC Library's collection:

Natural Resources

The UBC Library map collection includes maps related to natural resources, especially related to BC and Canada. These maps can often be found in the thematic maps section, and can include topics such as water use, land use, mining, foresty, fishing, agriculture, soil, geology, and environmental impact.

Some example subject headings include:

There are also a number of online resources on these topics. Start by browsing the online resources for the location you're interested in.

Navigation Resources

The UBC Library collection also has print copies of star charts, nautical charts, aeronautical maps, and other resources related to navigation. You can also find online resources in this guide.

To find these items in the Library, use a keyword search in the UBC Library Online Catalogue, or try browsing some of the following examples of subject headings:

You can also browse the charts in the Map Collection in Koerner Library, or try searching some of the collections in the series in the inventory spreadsheets, such as Canada Aeronautical and Air Navigation Charts and World Aeronautical Charts. Please note that the UBC Library's nautical charts may not be the most recent editions.


Hover over the title for a description of the following atlases in the UBC Library collection.

Books on Mapping

Hover over the titles for more information on these additional resources related to maps.