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2. Locating the study area

First we need to locate the study area. We can use a world map, the GeoCoding plugin and online maps. In this section we'll try all.

1. Start QGIS Desktop.

2. In the coordinate field at the bottom of the window type world and press Enter.


Now you'll see a world map.

3. Zoom in to the country of your interest using  from the toolbar.

To find the location of your study area more precisely you can use the GeoCoding plugin.

4.  In the main menu go to: Plugins | Manage and Install Plugins.


5. Search for GeoCoding.


6. Click Install Plugin,

7. Click Close to close the dialogue. 

8. In the toolbar look for the GeoCoding plugin icon  and click it.

9. Type the address of the place that you're looking for. Addresses can be even street names and house numbers. Then click OK.


Sometimes you will get another window when it found multiple results.


Then choose the one you think resembles your search and click OK.

The GeoCoding plugin will add a point at that location.

To get more context it is useful to add online layers using the QuickMapServices plugin.

10. Install the QuickMapServices plugin through the main menu: Plugins | Manage and Install Plugins.


11. After installing the QuickMapServices plugin choose in the main menu: Web | QuickMapServices | Settings.

12. Choose the tab More services and click Get contributed pack. Then click Save.


13. Now you can choose for example OpenStreetMap or Google Satellite as background map,

  • OpenStreetMap: Web | QuickMapServices | OSM | OSM Standard
  • Google Satellite: Web | QuickMapServices | Google | Google Satellite

Note that these online layers are rendered pictures and not data that we can use in analysis. 

14. Uncheck the World Map layer so you can see the online layer and zoom in further to your study area.