Adding longitude/latitude lines

Question: Hello. I would like add long/lat lines to a map that I have created. How do you do this?

Answer: To add a graticule to your map, see the help topic Adding a graticule.

For a map in layout view you use the Grids and Graticules Wizard to add a grid or graticule to your map.  Using this method, your grid or graticule will only draw in Layout View and it will always draw on top of all features in your data frame.

If you prefer to use a feature class instead (so the graticule does not draw on top of your map as with the method above), you can find a lat/long feature class on Esri’s Data and Maps DVD (in world folder >data folder > latlong.sdc > latlong).  Once you add this line feature class to your map you can write a definition query to select which lines of latitude and longitude you want to display (10, 15, 20, or 30 degree lines).

Formerly a Mapping Center Ask a Cartographer  Q & A.

About the author

Dr. Aileen Buckley has been making maps since she was an undergraduate student. She has a Bachelors in Geography and Spanish from Valparaiso University, a Masters in Geography from Indiana University, and a Ph.D. in Geography from Oregon State University. She is a senior product engineer on the Living Atlas team, and her work focuses on determining and sharing best practices for mapping and analysis with modern GIS. She publishes and presents world-wide on many aspects of mapping and GIS. She is a co-author of Map Use: Reading, Analysis, Interpretation, and she is a co-editor for the Atlas of Oregon. Aileen is a former president of CaGIS (the U.S. cartographic association) and is actively involved with the International Cartographic Association in which she is the lead delegate for the United States.


Next Article

Rising to the challenge: Using GIS to communicate coastal resilience

Read this article