A Map Layer is the cartographic layer you can select in the map parts of the RouteViewer and the RoutePlanner. The Map Layer just represents a rastermap (a picture) representing the world.
There are different flavours of that map-representation such as
Each of these maps represent the world in their own (cartographic) way.
Important to know is that he cartographic layer is independent from the Routing layer. This means that you can use a Topographic map but use the routing of OSM (or vv).
In the RoutePlanner you can select at the top Map Layers, via the option Select Map.
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