WikiProject Lesotho

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Lesotho, Africa
latitude: -29.6, longitude: 28.2
Browse map of Lesotho 29°36′00.00″ S, 28°12′00.00″ E
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Lesotho is a country in Africa at latitude 29°36′00.00″ South, longitude 28°12′00.00″ East. This page contains information relating to mapping activity that is specific to Lesotho.


If you have a goal that you are working towards or one that you would like to see get done (and are maybe willing to get the ball rolling) then add it to the list here, create a section where it can be coordinated and tracked, and a way of measuring progress. And then get on with it :-)

  • #MapLesotho! Part of a memorandum of understanding between the Government of Lesotho and Fingal County Council. See MapLesotho and
  • Buggy Idle is trying to map all the petrol pumps of Lesotho to build a motorist friendly app

Beware of Copyright!

Make sure you are not infringing on any copyright when contributing to OSM. In particular, note that it is not allowed to trace from copyright-protected maps. It is also not allowed to copy street names, etc. Read the FAQ and documentation carefully before you start, so that you are aware of any issues that you might not have thought about before.


Lesotho has 2 official languages, Sotho (Sesotho or Southern Sotho) and English. It is also home to several other languages, including Phuthi, Xhosa and Zulu

Use the following language codes when naming features

  • English - lang:en
  • Sesotho - lang:st
  • Phuthi - lang:ss
  • Xhosa - lang:xh
  • Zulu - lang:zu


  • Identify any facilities that might exist to enable easier translation of place names and features


Feel free to use any of the following methods to contact any of the Lesotho mappers

Tweet #MapLesotho or tweet @tshedy who is the Mapping Queen of Lesotho.

Identify yourself as a Lesotho mapper on the wiki by adding the following to your wiki user page [[Category:Users_in_Lesotho|YOUR_WIKI_USERNAME_HERE]]

See Category:Users_in_Lesotho for a list of all users


1. The Lesotho Mapathon was a global event which took place on 25th July 2014. Mapping parties were organised in Mafeteng, Dublin, London, Munster, Warsaw, and Ottowa.

2. A Lesotho Mapathon was conducted on 17th January 2015, this time involving mappers in Maseru, Dublin and Chattanooga.

3. Another #MapLesotho Mapathon was held on the 17th February 2016. The main event will be held at the Avani Maseru Hotel at 02hr00.

4. A birthday celebration involving mapping Lesotho was held at the Lesotho Embassy on the 13th August 2016

For future events, watch this space.

Mapping Tasks

Below is a list of mapping tasks set out using HOT's Tasking Manager to allow for coordinated mapping efforts. The level of task completion and validation reflects the position as at 24th July 2017. These tasks began in June 2016.

Job no. Location What to map Imagery source Task mapping status Task validation status Berea District All building, roads, rural features and nature Bing Complete 100% Underway 45% Butha-Buthe District All building, roads, rural features and nature Bing Complete 99% Underway 88% Leribe District All building, roads, rural features and nature Bing Underway 75% Underway 22% Mafeteng District All building, roads, rural features and nature Bing Underway 41% Underway 19% Maseru City All building, roads, rural features and nature Bing Complete 99% Underway 45% Maseru District All building, roads, rural features and nature Bing Underway 87% Underway 71% Mohale's Hoek District All building, roads, rural features and nature Bing Underway 90% Underway 23% Mokhotlong District All building, roads, rural features and nature Bing Underway 91% Underway 37% Qacha's Nek District All building, roads, rural features and nature Bing Complete 100% Complete 100% Quthing District All building, roads, rural features and nature Bing Complete 99% Complete 99% Thaba-Tseka District All building, roads, rural features and nature Bing Complete 99% Complete 100%

Older Tasks

This section simply outlines the history of previous efforts at mapping Lesotho. It should be acknowledged that around 20,000 nodes existed in Lesotho at the start of 2014. Predominantly these were the main highways, and tourism locations and a selection of large public buildings in Maseru City. This mapping was sporadic. The first "co-ordinated" effort to Map Lesotho started in February 2014, initially in a residential suburb called Ha Foso, which is at the north of Maseru City straddling the border with Berea district.

A pilot phase existing for a few months between March and June 2014. Here the mapping related to specific towns, and also to a cluster of rural villages to establish any issues that could arise in the future with tagging, tracing and network use in Lesotho. The following tasks existed at at time.

  • Mafeteng which was 100% done and 27% validated
  • Qacha's Nek which was 99% done and 2% validated
  • Hlotse which was 99% done and 13% validated
  • Mokhlakeng which was 99% done and 5% validated

There were four big jobs were set up for the Lesotho Mapathon basemap phase that started in July 2014. These are now archived, and the complete basemap was achieved in May 2016,

HOT Task # 597 - Urban Task Main Towns

HOT Task # 599 - Rural Main Task

HOT Task # 894 - Rural Supplemental Task

Tracking progress

Sometimes this is for competitions (among the Basotho OSM community), or sometimes for fun. There are different elements:

All time #MapLesotho contributor tracking (excludes nodes and activity prior to February 2015)

Since the beardies left is the activity after February 2016 when the three Irish OSM trainers left Lesotho.

District Progress is a #dataviz that looks at the 11 tasks that tiles that are shown separately in the 11 HOTOSM tasks.

For reference

Maseru Sateliite Map is a map showing far greater detail in Maseru, which while it can be consulted.

Land Classification Map is a electronically rendered map composed of the landuses indicated in OSM and is updated


The MapLesotho blog is a narrative of words, sounds and pictures focussed primarily on the unfolding story of mapping in Lesotho. Secondary content is about the Planning issues in Lesotho.

Road Network

Tagging schema for mapping the Lesotho road network is being done in accordance with Highway_Tag_Africa

The Classification is divided according to Urban and Rural areas.

Primary A The main artery connecting districts Yes Yes
Secondary B Shorter roads, normally paved, and connecting towns within districts Yes Yes
Tertiary C roads connecting villages from town centers Yes Yes
Residential D roads within a residential area, connected to tertiary roads Yes Yes
Unclassified D Roads connecting different Residential areas, they connect to Tertiary roads on the one end, and Residential roads on the other Yes Yes
Path D Paths not large enough for cars, normally unpaved and mainly for pedestrians, both inside and outside residential areas. Yes Yes
Track D The small roads going outside the residential areas, mainly for agricultural and forestry purposes. In general these roads do not have connecting function with other roads. No Yes

Special Lesotho Content

This section provides those special features that are there in Lesotho and not found in other countries. The table below provides those features and their tagging names as they appear in JOSM.

Khotla A place where only men and boys spend their evenings close to the kraal (Lesaka) and women and girls are not allowed to stay.

For this area no existing tags.




Motebo A small hut enclosed by a kraal in the cattle post areas used by shepherds as shelter and keeping their valuable materials. building=hut
Mophato A place and normally a small hut in the mountains where circumcision takes place. building=hut


Mokhoro A round Basotho house constructed by stones and straw roofing. building=hut


Lipatlo White zebra markings on the road allowing pedestrians to cross the street often includes a traffic calming hump. traffic_calming=table


Spaza Small shop constructed by using corrugated iron and sell informally. building=yes



Lesaka An enclosure for domestic animals usually constructed by rocks. barrier=wall


Public Transport

Infrastructure is mapped as nodes and ways. Bus stops on the ground and iron rails are mapped as such. Relations collect ways and stop nodes to create routes.

Bus Routes

Please add details on how the bus transport operates in Lesotho, for example,

  • Is there a single operator the whole country, or are there numerous smaller operators?
  • Are there specific bus stops for collection and drop off or can you get picked up anywhere?
  • Are there any existing websites or other sources that we could look to in order to import/copy information, with permission of course?


The length of the line within Lesotho, from the border bridge over the Mohokare River to the station, is 1.6 kilometres. It opened on 18 December 1905. The distance by rail from Maseru to the main line at Bloemfontein is 137 kilometres


There are a total of 28 airports in Lesotho, of which 3 have paved runways.[2] The only international airport is the Moshoeshoe I International Airport in Mazenod, a short distance southeast from Maseru. The main runway of the Moshoeshoe Airport is the only one with a runway longer than 1,523 meters; it measures at 3,200 meters.

Of the other airports, one has a paved runway between 914 and 1,523 meters in length and one a paved runway with a length of under 914 meters. Four of the airports have unpaved runways of between 914 and 1,523 meters in length, and the others have unpaved runways of less than 914 meters.[2] All of the classifications are made by the length of the longest runway on an airport.

Need information on

  • Airports
  • Airstrips

Information should include

  • Name
  • Any designations - Websites such as [1] and [2] are often helpful for finding ICAO codes. IATA codes can be obtained from the official IATA database (search by → location name).
  • Surface
  • Runway length
  • Public or private

Inland Waterways

mapping of navigable rivers. The mapping conforms with the OpenSeaMap standards where possible, with the intention of producing charts for navigation.

Background Imagery sources

Currently only Bing imagery is available. As further sources (out-of-copyright maps) become available, details will be added here

Borders and Boundaries

National & internal borders and boundaries, their admin_level and usage of relations are to be discussed at a later date. Include link to discussion.

Some boundaries are formed by the centre line of rivers, which are part of the boundary relation. Be careful when editing such rivers not to change the boundary accidentally. Do not join these segments with other river segments.


Are there specific national sports we should be looking to map in Lesotho or is it a matter of mapping soccer pitches, tennis courts etc?

Useful Resources

As always, respect copyright & licences if they are applicable to any of the following

OSM Related

  • OSMStats - Daily, weekly & monthly stats for qty of people editing, nodes added, deleted & modified
  • ITOworld - Heatmap showing 90 day activity for Lesotho area
  • New Mappers - Shows 2 day & 7 day markers for new people editing in the Lesotho area

To do,

  • add additional links
  • including rss feeds
  • add step by step on combining feeds into a single source if needed

External To OSM