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Best 5 websites for download of Free Shape Files layers

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Many times we keep searching for websites where we can get data in shape field format so that we can use for various GIS analysis and map preparation purpose. Even I have also wandered here and there looking for sources of data in shapefile format. Many Students who are studying in colleges are aware of such source. Still, I thought to pen down and bring to top five sources of Free Shapefile data layers from where we can download data like the country boundary, roads, water body, points of interest etc. Hope this will help you all students, researchers, academicians and even industry professional looking for such data.

  1. Geofabrik

Fabrik is free to download server. One can download data extracts from the server of OpenStreetMap project which gets updated regularly. You can select the continent and the country of your interests from the list below. One should be aware of osm data format before using the data. Geofabrik is a consulting and software development firm based in Karlsruhe, Germany specializing in OpenStreetMap services.


  1. Diva GIS

DivaGIS is a free source of GIS data in shapefile format of over 243 countries. One can select the country and then the category of shapefiles and Click OK to start the download of data. The various categories of data of a particular country you can find are Administrative Areas (Boundaries), Inland Water, Roads, Rail, Roads, Elevation, Land cover, population, Climate.


  1. MapCruzin:

Mapcruzin is another good source of GIS data in shapefile format where you can get data from numerous countries. All you need is to click on the of the data to need to download.


  1. GADM:

GDAM is spatial data reservoir of global administrative areas covering all countries data with boundary like provinces, taluk, counties etc. DGAM has over 250 countries data in different formats like Shapefile, package (spatial lite), R etc. The coordinate reference system of  GIS data is in longitude/latitude and the datum is WGS84.


    5 Sedac data

SEDAC, Socioeconomic Data and Application Centre, is one of GIS data tank of U.S National Aeronautics and Space Administration. You need to register before downloading of data. The data is available in zip file of ESRI File geodatabase or shapefiles, and have decimal degree geographic coordinates system with datum WGS84 (World Geodetic System spheroid of 1984).



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