Sunday, March 18, 2012

Free Garmin World-Wide Basemap

World_wide_base_map_1UPDATE: Before you get too excited, read this.

As if my recent posts dissing the nuvi weren’t enough to earn me the enmity of Garmin, now I go and post this. I’ll never get a review unit now!

I saw this thread in the GpsPasSion nuvi forum the other day, showing how to get a World-Wide Garmin basemap for free. Now this isn’t from some file-sharing site; nope, this is straight from Garmin themselves. The page is actually set up to download the Garmin World Wide Basemap for iQue 3600 owners, but I beleive it will work for any Garmin GPS that can accomodate maps. I was able to easily get it on my 60CSx.

Okay, before you go off and download it, here are a few caveats:

  • Read the full thread at GpsPasSion before doing anything.
  • I’m not guaranteeing anything here. You could erase your existing basemap. You may want to change the name of this one before transferring it to your GPS, but I’m not sure that will prevent erasure of the original. (Should have tried that myself!)
  • This is version 3.01, and it bears a date of April 7, 2004.
  • It does not appear to be the same product as Garmin’s WorldMap product, which has more detail, at least in some areas. But as you can see in the screen capture, it ain’t bad.


  • Download the file and unzip it.
  • You’ll find a file named GMAPBMAP.img in the unzipped folder.
  • I used SendMap to transfer it. You can download SendMap at the bottom of this page. Using SendMap is easy. Just connect your GPS to the PC and drag and drop an .img file onto SendMap.
  • I imagine this will work in MapSource too (so that you can load multiple maps onto your GPS), but getting it in there is a little beyond the scope of this post. It’s all covered in my book though — GPS Mapping – Make Your Own Maps.

Good luck! Let me know how it goes and what you think.

Related post:

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Rich is the owner, editor and chief bottle-washer for GPS Tracklog. Connect with him on Twitter, Facebook or Google Plus.


  1. Assuming I download this map to my GPS and that deletes my current basemap and I want it back, how do I?

  2. Zack-
    I did a quick search of the Groundspeak forum ( for “Basemap” in the post title. The consensus seems to be that you can’t erase the base map, and that if you did, a hard reset might recover it. No promises though! I’ll try deleting the WorldWide basemap from my unit when I get home from the day job, and will post here whether or not the original basemap shows up.

  3. Zack,
    Thanks for your comment. Please check out my latest post…

  4. Hi all,
    I couldn’t upload my map to my Nuvi 310 using SENDMAP20. when i try to connect it always tells me GPS not found although the Nuvi is found by the computer and Web Autoupdate.
    Anybody has any idea, please ?
    Best Regards

  5. ynos,
    I don’t know what’s happening there, but I can direct you to a good place for your question — the Yahoo Map Authors message board (

  6. A combination of my stubbornness and optimism led my to try this anyway, and I was able to load this basemap onto my 60CSx. It does indeed provide more detail than the pre-installed basemap, and the auto-routing functions work properly. So — at least for me — it works exactly as advertised.
    Thank you!

  7. How can you download the world map onto a apple computer?

  8. Charlie,
    I’m not a Mac person, so I can’t hep. You might want to post and ask on the thread at GpsPasSion.


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