Using spatial bookmarks

A spatial bookmark identifies a particular geographic location that you want to save and reference later. For example, you might create a spatial bookmark that identifies a study area. As you pan and zoom around your map, you can easily return to the study area by accessing the bookmark. You can also use spatial bookmarks to highlight areas on your map you want others to see.

You can create a spatial bookmark at any time. As a shortcut, you can create bookmarks when you find and identify map features. Spatial bookmarks are defined for working with spatial data in Data view; they can't be defined on an area of the page in Layout view.

Using spatial bookmarks

To go to the location of a bookmark in your map display, click Bookmarks on the main menu and click the bookmark that you want to go to in your map.

Navigating to a bookmark

If your data frame has a fixed scale so that zooming in and out is disabled, choosing a bookmark from the Bookmarks menu pans to that bookmark.

Creating a bookmark

  1. Pan and zoom the data frame to your area of interest.
  2. Click Bookmarks > Create.
    Creating a new spatial bookmark for the current extent
  3. On the Spatial Bookmark dialog box, enter the name of the new bookmark and click OK.

You can create bookmarks automatically from the selected features or graphics on your map. First, select the features or graphics that you want to create bookmarks from. Now click the My Places button My Places on the Data Frame Tools toolbar and use the Add From menu button in the My Places dialog box. Then select the places in the list that you just added if they are not already selected and click Save Selected from the Save menu button. This creates a places file (.dat) that you can load into the Bookmarks Manager. When you load places into the Bookmarks Manager, they are converted into bookmarks.

Creating a bookmark using the Identify tool

When you use the Identify tool Identify to click features and display their attributes, you can create a spatial bookmark. Here are the steps:

  1. Select the Identify tool and click a feature.
  2. On the Identify window, right-click the feature for which you want to create a spatial bookmark and select Create Bookmark.
    Creating a bookmark in the Identify dialog box

This will create a bookmark with an extent that surrounds the feature and names it after the feature.

Creating a bookmark using the Find tool

When you use the Find tool Find and generate a set of matches, you can right-click one of the matches and select Create Bookmark as shown here. The bookmark is named after the feature.

Creating a bookmark using the Find tool

Managing and sharing bookmarks

Each data frame has its own list of bookmarks, which are stored in the map document. To load bookmarks into another data frame or a different map document, export the bookmarks. Bookmarks are exported to an ArcGIS Place File (.dat), which is the same file used with My Places. This allows you to save and load bookmarks into your My Places list and vice versa.

The Bookmarks Manager allows you to add, remove, rename, navigate to, save, and load spatial bookmarks. You can also organize and reorder your list of bookmarks. To open the Bookmarks Manager, click Bookmarks > Manage.

Bookmarks Manager

Saving and loading bookmarks

You can save a series of bookmarks that you have created and share them with other users, who can load them into their maps. For example, you might create a set of bookmarks for areas in your city and share them with other users.

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