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Available languages — Key:place
Public-images-osm logo.svg place
The place tag is used on a single node to mark the centre of a named settlement as well as on the whole area to mark its extent.
Group: Places
Used on these elements
may be used on nodesshould not be used on waysmay be used on areasuse on relations unspecified
Documented values: 25
Useful combination
See also
Status: De facto


See also: Places

Used to indicate that a particular location is known by a particular name, to indicate what sort of "place" it is. A place tag should exist for every significant human settlements (city, town, suburb, etc.) and also for notable unpopulated, named places.

If you have a way of knowing the population of a place (from a free data source), the population=* tag typically is added to the same object the place tag appears on.


The simplest way to tag a place is to position a node Node at the recognized centre of the place, which may be location of the town hall, central square, or similar for a populated place.


You can also define a boundary for a place by creating an Area Area and tagging it with the place=* tag.

Note: as of early 2016, many areas tagged with the place=* tag do not render in the openstreetmap-carto stylesheets. This is a known issue, documented at openstreetmap-carto's GitHub project.


See below for the main tag values

Key Value Element Comment Rendering Photo

Administratively declared places

place country Node See boundary=administrative, admin_level=2
place state Node Area See boundary=administrative, admin_level=* varies; may not be used in all countries.
place region Node Area See boundary=administrative, admin_level=* varies; may not be used in all countries. For natural regions other keys should be searched.
place province Node Area See boundary=administrative, admin_level=* varies; may not be used in all countries.
place district Node Area See boundary=administrative, admin_level=* varies; may not be used in all countries.
place county Node Area See boundary=administrative, admin_level=* varies; may not be used in all countries.
place municipality Node Area See boundary=administrative, admin_level=* varies; depending on the country a collection of arbitrary hamlets, villages and towns may form an administrative unit; sometimes members of a unit reform or join with another municipality as a result of political process. Within a municipality individual settlements are a lot less connected than those within a city, where they have grown connected over time.

Populated settlements, urban

place city Node Area The largest urban settlements in the territory, normally including the national, state and provincial capitals. These are defined by charter or other governmental designation in some territories and are a matter of judgement in others. Should normally have a population of at least 100,000 people and be larger than nearby towns. See place=suburb and place=neighbourhood on how to tag divisions within a city. The outskirts of urban settlements may or may not match the administratively declared boundary of the city.
place borough Node Area See boundary=administrative, depending on the country suburbs in larger cities are often grouped into administrative units called boroughs or city districts; using the value borough avoids name confusion in countries that declare districts within their states or counties.
place suburb Node Area A distinct section of an urban settlement (city, town, etc.) with its own name and identity. e.g.
  • annexed towns or villages which were formerly independent,
  • independent (or dependent) municipalities within a city or next to a much bigger town
  • historical districts of settlements
  • industrial districts or recreation areas within a settlements with specific names.
place quarter Node Area A named part of a bigger settlement where this part is smaller than a suburb and bigger than a neighbourhood. This does not have to be an administrative entity.
The term quarter is sometimes used synonymously for neighbourhood.
place neighbourhood Node Area A named part of a place=village, a place=town or a place=city. Smaller than place=suburb and place=quarter.
The term quarter is sometimes used synonymously for neighbourhood, but may also stand for borough or suburb and hence is often avoided in OSM. See Wikipedia Quarter_(urban_subdivision)
place city_block Node Area A named city block that is part of a place=city. See Wikipedia City_block
place plot Node Area A named plot is a tract or parcel of land owned or meant to be owned by some owner.

Populated settlements, urban and rural

place town Node Area A second tier urban settlement of local importance, often with a population of 10,000 people and good range of local facilities including schools, medical facilities etc and traditionally a market. In areas of low population, towns may have significantly lower populations. See place=neighbourhood and possibly also place=suburb on how to tag divisions within a town.
place village Node Area A smaller distinct settlement, smaller than a town with few facilities available with people traveling to nearby towns to access these. Populations of villages vary widely in different territories but will nearly always be less than 10,000 people, often a lot less. See place=neighbourhood on how to tag divisions within a larger village.
place hamlet Node Area A smaller rural community typically with fewer than 100-200 inhabitants, few infrastructure.
place isolated_dwelling Node Area Smallest kind of human settlement. No more than 2 households.
place farm Node Area A farm that has its own name. If the farm is not a part of bigger settlement use place=isolated_dwelling. See also landuse=farmyard
place allotments Node Area Dacha or cottage settlement, which is located outside other inhabited locality. This value is used mainly in Russia and other countries of the former Soviet Union, where a lot of such unofficial settlements exist

Other places

place continent Node Area One of the seven continents: Africa, Antarctica, Asia, Australia, Europe, North America, South America
place archipelago Relation Identifies the relation of an archipelago, which contains several islands and islets.
place island Area Identifies the coastline of an island (> 1 km2), also consider place=islet for very small islands
place islet Node Area Identifies an islet (< 1 km2).
place locality Node Area For an unpopulated named place.
place User Defined Node Area All commonly used values according to Taginfo

Additional attributes

population Number Node Area Number of inhabitants of the place. Among other things, it might be used in selecting which name to render at a given zoom level at what font size.
name Text Node Area To define the name of a place.
postal_code Text Node Way Area When a whole place has a single postal code, it can be specified in this tag.
addr:postcode Text Node Way Area Some communities are using this tag on places, areas, street relations, according Karlsruhe Schema instead of 'postal_code' tag. This is not recommended, since it clashes with addressing.
reference_point yes Node Way Area Named landmarks used to identify locations (common in some countries).
is_in Text Node Way Area Optional. Rudimentary way to describe boundary hierarchies, e.g. place=suburb, name=Eccleshall, is_in=Sheffield,South Yorkshire,England,UK. If boundary polygons exist, it's usually not needed. Unless categorization is wrongly done by e.g. Nominatim.

This section is a wiki template with a default description in English. Editable here.

See also

  • border_type=*
  • place:ph=* - a Philippines-specific tag used on places unique in the Philippines. It is still proposed, but already used.