# What's the relation between packages PGFplots and TikZ?

I've constated that I can use tikzpicture even if I comment \usepackage{tikz} out, as long as I keep \usepackage{pgfplots}. Isn't tikzpicture provided by package tikz? In which situation should I load both pgfplots and tikz?

• Package pgfplots is based on tikz package. When you load it, it also load tikz. Actually it (simplified said) different axis environments to tikzpicture and simple and rich possibilities to draw graphs. – Zarko Jan 4 '16 at 14:10
• I'm guessing pgfplots is specialty use of tikz+pgf, thus it loads tikz. There is nothing wrong in loading both as latex make sure you do not accidentally loading, say, tikz twice – daleif Jan 4 '16 at 14:12