IELTS Map Listening Practice

This lesson is to practice map completion for IELTS listening. First, there is some sentence completion and then you must do the map completion exercise.

Tips for Maps

  1. Check the location of each number on your map
  2. Think of language that might be used to describe that location
  3. Look for any arrows on the map
  4. Answers to questions will come in order (the answer for question 1 will come before the answer for question 2 in the recording)
  5. Most map recordings are similar to a guided tour which follows a logical order
  6. Don’t be distracted by extra information
  7. Don’t forget to make notes – you can write all over your question paper
    1. when you make notes, avoid writing long words – just use abbreviations or simple letters

Map Listening Practice: The Taj Mahal 

Questions 1-2

Complete the sentences below using no more than one word and/or a number.

  1. The Taj Mahal was completed in ……………..
  2. Around ………… labourers were used in its creation.

Questions 3-7

Label the map below using no more than two words and/or a number.

building map ielts listening



Welcome to the Taj Mahal. This is one of the most famous monuments to love in the world. It was built between 1631 and 1653 in the city of Agra by the Mughal Emperor Shah as a mausoleum for his wife. The construction involved some 20,000 workers and incorporated materials from China, Tibet, Sri Lanka and Arabia.

We are here at the Outer Gate and directly in front of us is the forecourt. On the left hand side of the forecourt, you will see some subsidiary tombs and opposite that are the tomb attendants’ quarters. If you go straight ahead, you will come to the Great Gate and beyond that is the formal gardens. The gardens are divided into 4 sections by paths which represent the 4 rivers of paradise. Midway, where the paths intersect, is a marble pond, in which the mausoleum is beautifully reflected. Walking through the gardens, past the pond, you will come to the mausoleum itself which has a marble dome, 35m high. Each side of the building has archways which are framed by carefully chosen verses from the Qur’an in beautifully stylised calligraphy. To the left of this, is the mosque and to the right you can find a guesthouse. Now I’ll give you some time to wander round and see this marvel for yourself.

  1. 1653
  2. 20,000
  3. forecourt (you must have the correct spelling)
  4. Great Gate (capital letters not important – see IELTS Exam FAQ page)
  5. pond / marble pond
  6. mausoleum
  7. guesthouse / guest house


IELTS Listening: Free Practice and Tips

Click to see IELTS Listening Tips 

Map Completion for IELTS Listening

You may have to fill in points on a map in IELTS listening section2. This means you will be given a picture of a map to complete. When you must decide the answers to numbers on a map, the answer will come in order but that doesn’t mean it will be simple.

Always prepare the map by looking at the locations of each number and predicting what language you might hear to find the answers. Make sure you check the title of the map to help you predict answers and language.

Map Completion

Complete the map below using no more than two words for each question.

Bedford Surgery

Map Building Plan


Welcome to the Bedford Doctor’s Surgery. As you are a new patient, please listen to the information about our practice to learn about our surgery and the facilities available. To enter our surgery you will need to go up the stairs to the first floor so if you are disabled and need wheelchair access, you will need to call us to organize this. Once you enter the surgery, please go straight to the reception room on the left and sign in with our receptionist. You’ll also be able to wait for the doctor here. If you need the toilets, you’ll have to go back down to the ground floor which isn’t shown on the map and belong to the company renting that floor. If you have a large bag or a coat, you may want to leave them in the cloakroom which is located at the other end of the building. For the cloakroom, turn right once you get up the stairs and go straight ahead, it’s a small room at the end of the corridor.

The two doctor’s surgeries are situated just to the right of the stairs both with a lovely view over the town, one of them used to be the old waiting room. We also have a radiology unit which is next to the cloakroom and a laboratory for blood work just beyond the radiology unit. For patients who will be traveling by bus, there’s a bus stop just a few doors away from the surgery and for those of you coming by car, please park outside our main doors.

1. reception / reception room (left of the stairs)
2. cloakroom (right of the stairs at the end. You must spell this correctly to get the answer)
3. surgery (directly right of the stairs – the speakers says two surgeries so this is for number 4 as well. The speaker said that one of them used to be a waiting room – this is in the past, not now – a typical IELTS trap).
4. surgery
5. radiology unit (next to the cloakroom – if you didn’t get cloakroom, then you will have a problem to get this correct. You will need both words for a correct answer)
6. laboratory (next to the radiology unit)


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