Natural Earth is a public domain map dataset available at 1:10 million (1 cm = 100 km), 1:50 million, and 1:110 million map scales. It is free for public use in any type of project.
The generalized linework maintains consistent, recognizable geographic shapes at 1:10m, 1:50m, and 1:110m scales. Natural Earth was built from the ground up so all data layers align precisely with one another. For example, where rivers and country borders are one and the same, the lines are coincident.
Most data contain embedded feature names, which are ranked by relative importance. Other attributes facilitate faster map production, such as width attributes assigned to river segments for creating tapers.
There are three types of downloadable data:
- Large Scale Data, 1:10m. The most detailed, suitable for making zoomed-in maps of countries and regions
- Medium Scale Data, 1:50m. Suitable for making zoomed-out maps of countries and regions.
- Small Scale Data, 1:110m. Suitable for schematic maps of the world on a postcard or as a small locator globe.