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The Font is Ready! BellTopo Sans Fonts Design Complete

Map of Alaska showing the westernmost part of Alaska add the Pacific Ocean

About the BellTopo Sans Font

I designed the BellTopo Sans font, originally inspired by the typefaces on the antique U.S.G.S. maps of the late 1800s and early 1900s. To read more about the inspiration for BellTopo Sans, read the first post I wrote about it when the font was in beta. The font has undergone massive improvements, and consists of a new End User License Agreement.

BellTopo Sans Bold can be seen in the word “Sentrum” along with the labels in this map legend. BellTopo Sans Italic is seen in the hydro label “Oslofjorden.”

New Updates

The upgrades to the BellTopo Sans font as of this blog post include the following:

• Kerning improvements across all fonts

• Alternative numerals and regular numerals have been swapped so that the former alternatives are now the regular default numerals.

• New non-English letters

• New characters and glyphs, such as the degree symbol, bullet point,

• Additional alternative characters for many letters.

• An updated End User License Agreement (Yes, free to use even commercially, but please read for details because there is more to it. For example, you cannot distribute for commercial use, etc.)


By downloading this font you agree to the End User License Agreement (EULA).

Download BellTopo Sans here.

Type here for a live demo!
There is a quaint place beneath Cirque Mountain called Waxwing Valley.
Ta en tur til fjellsjøen.
¡La primavera está aquí!

Let’s Preview BellTopo Sans in the wild!

Since releasing the font beta version earlier this year, I have been delighted to see designers and cartographers using BellTopo Sans! To be clear (and as you will read in the End User License Agreement) it is not necessary to credit me when you use the font. Although, many folks have mentioned me in a post or in their work that uses the font, which allowed me to see their work. To give you a sense of BellTopo Sans, let me take a moment to show you some of these great designers’ posts along with some of my personal samples below and in the original post.

Hachure Map. Warren Davison is a very talented map designer, and all-around designer. A few months ago, he posted this map sample on Twitter, which uses the BellTopo Sans font for some map features like street and neighborhood labels.

Roasted Coffee Label. Russell Roberts had taken up coffee roasting, and designed his label using the BellTopo Sans font. The particular roast was named in honor of his gorgeous pup, Beau.

ArcGIS Online Map Viewer (Beta). (Preview in second image list below) The company Esri has included BellTopo Sans – Regular in their new font selector in the online mapping program, ArcGIS Online. Look for the latest upgrades to BellTopo Sans font in their next release, forthcoming.

Blue Ridge Mountains map. Cartographer Jerry Shannon designed this stunning map of the Blue Ridge mountains, and I am ecstatic for how the BellTopo Sans font appears in the title phrase “Placed to hike and camp.”

Campaign Donations map. Tom Fish has created this choropleth map of donations for the 2020 U.S. Presidential campaign. Tom Fish has clearly spent a lot of time in understanding the donations across these political campaign.

Kaumajet Mountains. Alex Fries is a talented cartographer who created one of the first pieces using the BellTopo Sans map that I saw. His color choices for this map are extraordinary.

Martha’s Vinyard. Washington Post cartographer, Lauren Tierney, uses the BellTopo Sans font on her Martha’s Vinyard map that she showcased on Twitter during the March 2020 #CreativeCarto online gathering of cartographers (founded by Mapbox cartographer Vanessa Knoppke-Wetzel). Follow the #CreativeCarto hashtag on Twitter and Instagram to participate in this welcoming mapping atmosphere.

Some personal examples of BellTopo Sans

BellTopo Sans Regular is seen in this stylized ‘postal rubber stamp’ designed for my presentation at the upcoming North American Cartographic information Society conference, which will be virtually held this year.
BellTopo Sans Regular (Beta) is available in the ArcGIS Online Map Viewer (Beta). Look for the latest upgrades to BellTopo Sans in Map Viewer in a forthcoming update.
Each of the four typefaces of BellTopo Sans is used across my Journey to Alaska map, 2020.
BellTopo Sans is used for the geographic features and the neighborhood labels on this Seattle, Washington map I designed for this YouTube tutorial.
An earlier preview of BellTopo Sans Regular atop a screenshot of an antique U.S.G.S topo.

Live Preview:

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