Topographical Maps (paper): Where to get?

I’m looking for paper Topographical Maps, 1:50 000, for certain wilderness areas and general espionage. Just drove downtown Pta (smells like wee) to visit Government Printing Works only to find “No”. Hrmph.

Any advice or if anyone has digital copies and so forth…

Thanks in advance.

Specifcally “Wolkberg”

We used to buy them at a place called Trig survey in Mowbray Cape Town. Just googled trig survey and Chief Directorate survey and mapping came up so maybe they still exist


I know we used to be able to get them from the National Geo­-spatial Information in Mowbray in Cape Town. You would need the map sheet reference number and they would put them on a flash card for you. Not sure how it works these days, looks like that is now sitting under the Department of Rural Development and Land reform who have offices in Pretoria. You could try them, though they are more likely to give you a file than print something. Could then take to a print shop. There website seems pretty messy and broken though.

Last I played with Avenza maps also had SA 1:50k topos. Could either use that to find the reference (Looks like it is 2430AA SERALA) or possibly print/download.

If nothing is working out the CDNGI data portal is pretty useful. You can set it to NGI Topo in the top right then start turning on the layers you want, has a local print function just set it to 150 dpi and the scale you want.


Thanks Jaxz.
Pretty comprehensive, as always.

The lady at Governemnt Printing did give me Dept of Rural Development ph# for CT.
And yup, that is the right map…2430AA SERALA. Just managed to download one earlier today but the print quality at Jetline was sub-par, totally pixellated, wasn’t too big a file though, like 9MB in png and 12MB in tiff. I’ll check out your links!!


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Haha, yeah I’m not so great at short form answers :sweat_smile: And this being a distraction from working at home probably doesn’t help! Hope you manage to get sorted.


I’m already at the ‘being distracted from my distractions’ phase…at this point I may just tattoo the map on some calf-hide, or pigskin, weighing up the pros and cons as we speak

I have recently started using the online website / app Cape Farm Mapper to “make” maps. The app has limited functionality outside of the Western Cape, but I just checked now and it does have the 1:50K overlay for the whole of SA. Just click on “Basemap” and look for “NGI Topocadastral 1:50K”. From there you can zoom in to your location and export the map to an A4 size pdf that you can print and laminate (however you cant draw gridlines as you can with the Government issue versions). You can also add a gpx/kmz/kml files to the map before exporting to show a route. The resulting map is quite small (pretty much equivalent to one day’s hiking) but it is quite handy.

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Ah that’s interesting, will give it a look.

I have been using the free version of Caltopo for mapping out routes and print custom maps in the Cederberg. Find you can do a nice blend of the opencycle maps and satellite with my routes and gpx points marked on it. Can export georefrenced PDFs which go straight into Avenza on a phone as well.

Not sure if it will do for what you’re after @Carl but here is an example for Wolkberg for instance at 1:50k A4. You seems to be able to set scale and custom size prints, wish I could find a way to get the contour numbers on :man_shrugging: CalTopoTest.pdf (565.1 KB)

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Carl - I have the whole Database- and can send you the Tiff file.
You’ll then need to get it printed at A0 size.

Jazx said go to the Department of … and they’ll print one out for you.
Absolutely amazing department. If you want to get it laminated, take a pen and loooong ruler with you, and then manually draw in the lines of Long and Lat. before they laminate it for you.

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@Dave @Jaxz @scubafrique
Thanks for the tips gents, as it turns out the Dept of Rural Development is the way to go, the one in Mowbray. Pretoria version no physical maps.

So the maps cost R25 each, you either need to pick them up yourself or have a courier collect. They don’t post, not now at least.
The Pretoria branch will email you a small filed map, well, they did to me.

I will pm you for that, thanks!


Anyone else following - do what Jaxz says and go the building in mowbray the guys are really great and super helpful.

You can get PDF files or get them to send a hard copy