Add Image Maps



This plugin allows authors to turn areas of an image into links by implementing HTML image maps in WordPress.

Authors can set up clickable areas on the image editing page, and see them outlined on the image. Images on the public-facing pages can use the map saved with them.

The plugin can attach image maps to featured and header images as well as images attached to content. Admins can configure where the plugin looks for images with maps, and how it interacts with responsive images.

How to use

  1. Choose the image you wish to edit in the library.
  2. Open it in the attachment edit page. (From Attachment details, click on Edit more details)
  3. Click on create image map for size full’
  4. Add clickable areas, including alt text as well as links. (This is not a full GUI, but the areas are visible on the image, which is slightly greyed out when
    you edit the image maps.)
  5. Click update to save the image with the map.
  6. Either:
    • Add the image to the desire page/post, and confirm it is attached (in the attachment edit screen or media list view), or
    • Make the image the pages featured images, or
    • Set the image as a header

Configuration options

On the Admin settings page for the plugin, you can save CPU time by turning it off where you dont need it. You can also decide whether to turn off the Image Maps Resizer that makes image maps responsive, and (for images with maps) WordPresss own responsive images feature.


Image Map Resizer is David Bradshaw, and incorporated under an MIT Expat license. The cover image uses The Garden of Eden, by Jan Brueghel.



  1. Unzip into the /wp-content/plugins/ directory, or simply install through the WordPress plugins screen.
  2. Activate the plugin through the Plugins menu in WordPress
  3. Go to Settings for Image Maps to turn on the features you want.


  1. Unzip into the /wp-content/plugins/ directory, or simply install through the WordPress plugins screen.
  2. Activate the plugin through the Plugins menu in WordPress
  3. Go to Settings for Image Maps to turn on the features you want.

HTML Image Maps dont play well with responsive images; their dimensions are absolute, and they dont scale up or down when CSS resizes the image. This is a problem with the image maps themselves.

WordPress 4.4 onwards includes srcset and sizes attributes to make all images responsive. So this plugin takes a couple of steps to solve this, both of which can be turned off or on in the plugin settings page.

Firstly, it optionally turns off the responsiveness for images with maps, by deleting their srcset and sizes attributes.

Secondly, it incorporates David Bradshaws Image Map Resizer script to keep image maps the same size as their images. This is useful not just for responsive images, but for every image that is displayed in other than full size.

Add Image Maps doesnt search the page HTML to find every image (which would slow the plugin down). Instead, it asks WordPress which images are attached to the post/page (or featured, or the header). Unfortunately, depending on the editor you use, its possible to add an image to post or page content bypassing the WordPress paperwork that this plugin relies on.

These are the things to check:

Did you add the Image Map to the right instance of the image?

When you add images to a theme, as a header or an icon, WordPress sometimes creates a new cropped or shrunk image. Those copies do not appear in the media library grid screen, so theyre easy to miss. They are listed in the Add Image Maps box on the attachment edit screen, with a link to their attachment edit screen.

Is the image attached to the post/page in the WordPress database?

(Skip this if its the featured image or the header, which are checked separately.)

The Add Image Maps box tells you which post/page (if any) the image is attached to.

You can change which images are attached to which pages if, as an admin, you go to the Media Library and choose the list view.


Attached, in this context, doesnt quite mean exactly the same thing as appearing on the page.

By default, the images attached to the post are the ones uploaded whilst editing it, which is why they are listed as uploaded to this page in the post edit screen. Depending which editor you use, you can easily end up putting an image on a post without attaching it. And if you upload an image to a page, and then remove the image, it will still be attached.

You can see which images are attached to what quite clearly on the Media Library screen in List mode (jpg).


Does the site theme include the image ID in its markup?

Unfortunately, solving this involves writing something on the Text tab of the post editing screen.

Most themes, when the insert images into pages, include the images WordPress ID somewhere in the HTML. (The number on the edit screen address after post =). The most popular ways are as the value of an attribute called data-attachment-id or a series of CSS classes of the form wp-image-1234, ending in the id number.

If your theme doesnt have those, then Add Image Maps will try to recognise it by filename, but thats not guaranteed, and you might have to manually add one of those to the HTML. If you arent familiar with the text tab, this is how to do it:

  1. Go to the image edit screen, and copy the image ID number from after post= in the web address
  2. Go to the page/post edit screen
  3. Go to the text tab, and find the start of the tag.
  4. After , paste data-attachment-id="XXX", replacing XXX with the ID number

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