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Public-images-osm logo.svg natural = sinkhole
Rax Splitterbombenloch.jpg
A natural depression or hole in the surface topography. Edit or translate this description.
Group: Natural
Used on these elements
may be used on nodesshould not be used on waysmay be used on areasshould not be used on relations
Useful combination
See also
Status: approvedPage for proposal

A  sinkhole, also known as a sink, shake hole, snake hole, swallow hole, swallet, doline, or cenote, is a natural depression or hole in the surface topography caused by the removal of soil or bedrock, often both, by water and/or by collapse of an underlying cavity. A typical form of a sinkhole is a crater. Sinkholes are abundant on  karst plateaus.

Don't mix this up with a  polje, which is much larger, or with a natural=cave_entrance. On the bottom of a sinkhole, however, there may be a cave entrance. In this case, you may wish to map both, if the sinkhole is of remarkable size; or the cave entrance only, otherwise.

Sinkholes vary in size from 1 to 600 m (3.3 to 2,000 ft) both in diameter and depth, and vary in form from soil-lined bowls to bedrock-edged chasms.

Consider also tagging any cliffs using natural=cliff

This tag can be specified using sinkhole=*, to precise the type of sinkhole; for OSM, used with anthropogenic=yes, natural=sinkhole and sinkhole=* can describe an anthropogenic sinkhole-like orifice, a cave-in for instance. Remember that natural=* doesn't necessarily designate natural features.


See also