Maps and atlases

The Maps and Atlas Collection at Special Collections holds 2000 maps, printed and in manuscript, and a small collection of atlases of the Netherlands and the former colonies Dutch Indonesia and Suriname.

The oldest printed maps are from the 16th and 17th century, including an interesting collection of maps of the Dutch polders. There is also a large collection of maps of the Dutch Topographical Survey (1850-now, scales 1:25,000 and 1:50,000) and thematic map series on hydrology, geology, geomorphology etc. The maps can be found in the Catalogue.

Alterra Map Database, 1945-2000

The Alterra Map Database, with maps from 1945-2000 is a separate database, which holds approximately 8000 printed maps related to the rural areas of the Netherlands. It presents data on soil science, geomorphology, groundwater, landscape, vegetation, archeology and cultural history. In 2006 some 4000 maps were made available on line as zoomable maps. A clickable map showing the Netherlands was added to the left pane. You can use this map to search for maps in a region.

Migration Alterra Map Database in 2017

This year the Alterra Map Database will be migrated to the Image Collections. If you have questtions, please send an email to