I'm almost completely new to QGIS.

I have a layer from a shapefile loaded up into QGIS with a few thousand zones/features. There are also multiple fields/columns in the attribute table. I need to create a heatmap (or something like this)

enter image description here

from one of those fields, let's call it X. Field X has a value for each zone/feature.

I already looked around a bit, but if I go to the layer properties --> Symbology, I don't see heatmap in the top dropdown menu.

Can anyone help me with how to create a heatmap?

  • 2
    Hi there, and welcome to GIS SE! Please make sure you take the tour to see what is expected of a high-quality, focused question. In this case, you probably ought to provide more information about the data you're working with it. You're referencing "zones/features"; does this mean you have polygons? Heatmaps are generated from point features and output as a raster. What you've linked to is a choropleth map, though. Also, what version of Q are you using? The built-in heatmap was introduced at a certain version, so that matters.
    – jcarlson
    Commented May 29, 2020 at 14:47
  • Thanks for answering! I do have polygons (I think). I have a visible map when I imported the shapefile (from .shp .dbf and .shx). It looks like this: i.imgur.com/rrT5L9b.jpg However, it's not linked to any realworld coordinates, but that's also not necessary. And I'm using QGIS version 3.12.3 Commented May 29, 2020 at 14:51

1 Answer 1


If field X has the value you would like to use for your "heatmap", you can do the following:

  1. Open the layer properties and go to the "Symbology" tab
  2. Select Graduated in the pull-down menu at the top
  3. Set the Value to X
  4. Choose the desired number of classes in Classes and press the Classify button.

    enter image description here

  5. Click on the Apply or OK button to see the result.

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