I have a big KML file containing a list of places. I can convert it to other formats if needed.

I want to put all of these places on a world map, and share the result.


  • Free
  • Viewable without registration
  • Easily browsable on the web
  • Easily browsable on mobile. You can scroll/zoom the map, see the places, and an arrow icon shows your current position and direction using your device's GPS (CartoDB and Mapbox don't have this)
  • Usable with 100,000 places
  • Obviously, show each place's name, at its latitude/longitude
  • Bonus if users don't have to perform complex operations like downloading files etc

If there are several such webapps, the one with the less restrictions (file size, number of places, etc) wins.

  • 2
    May sound stupidly easy – but if those .csv files contain the lat/lon data: have you google'd for csv2kml to simply convert the data to "Keyhole format" (.kml), then upload the resulting .kml to some web server, and share a Google Maps link including its URL? That should work in any web browser. And the Google Maps interface should also be able to show the current position of the device. Just the first thing coming to my mind :) But of course you didn't say whether lat/lon are part of your .csv.
    – Izzy
    Commented Mar 12, 2015 at 14:35
  • 1
    Can you clarify your easily browsable on mobile requirement and showing your current position. Technically two different requirements as I read it. I know a solution just not sure if it has the "Show Your Current Position" function. So can you clarify?
    – CRSouser
    Commented Mar 12, 2015 at 15:05
  • @Izzy: Great idea, could you post as an answer?
    – Nicolas Raoul
    Commented Mar 13, 2015 at 1:36
  • @CRSouser: Is it clearer now? Thanks!
    – Nicolas Raoul
    Commented Mar 13, 2015 at 1:37
  • @NicolasRaoul Yes.. I need to research my two ideas to see if you can use do the current location thing. When you say big, you mean under a gig and a million rows right?
    – CRSouser
    Commented Mar 13, 2015 at 2:41

1 Answer 1


As my "raw idea" was declared a "worthy answer" by the OP, here it comes:

Not a specific application for either conversion or display, but a rather generic one: Assuming the .csv files contain latitude and longitude data, it shouldn't be too hard converting them to Keyhole format (.kml). A Google search on csv2kml turns up plenty of results (which I didn't check all), at least some of them offering a GUI for conversion. I'd wonder if none of them would even allow some automatic converion / batch processing.

Now, having a .kml file available, you only need a place to host it. Any web service should do, so you e.g. could even put it on your Google Drive or Dropbox and declare it "public". That done, you'd only need to share an URL to e.g. Google Maps (which would work cross-platform with most web browsers), or share the .kml directly to be used with a bunch of different apps (including Google Earth, Marble, and others). For a reference, you can check with Google's KML Documentation.

How would this solution match your requirements?

  • Free: pick a free converter, then: Yes.
  • Viewable without registration: Definitely, in all mentioned combinations.
  • Easily browsable on the web: Yes, using the Google Maps approach described.
  • Easily browsable on mobile: Yes, same as with web. Additionally, using the shared .kml file (or the URL to it), possibly even better when used with a specific app. On Android, a bunch of apps come to my mind – including Google Maps itself, Google Earth, and Locus Maps. Much more, too long a list to mention here. Most Navigation apps should do.
  • Parses for each place with name/latitude/longitude: Depends on which end to apply this condition. The client, given the .kml file, should definitely do that. For creating the .kml file, this would depend on what data the original .csv file contains. Provided it has those three columns (plus maybe some more): Yes.
  • Bonus for the ability to parse addresses as well: I've never tested this one, and am not sure which converter handles it correctly. But most "navigation apps" should be able to handle this, and the mentioned Google-Frontends as well. And yes, with the "Google Frontends" it is also possible to offer the address without coordinates, and have it calculating the coordinates itself – at least given a single POI. I'm not sure whether that works for collections as well.
  • Usable with 100,000 places: should be (I've never tested with that large a .kml/.kmz file. Depending on device power (CPU/RAM), it might put some strain on the rendering, though.
  • 1
    As a navigation map, unfortunately OsmAnd does not seem to recognize the KML format, but Google Earth accepts and show it fine. I will now test with 100,000 places, as it is a hard requirement.
    – Nicolas Raoul
    Commented Mar 16, 2015 at 8:53
  • Unfortunately with 100,000 places, Google Earth is extremely slow, taking a minute to load and being a huge pain to navigate (on a reasonably recent Android), so I will need a faster app or a different solution, maybe a solution that streams data for the place I am in, instead of trying to load and show it all.
    – Nicolas Raoul
    Commented Mar 17, 2015 at 8:55
  • That's what I've been afraid of – see "it might put some strain on the rendering". Sorry to hear.
    – Izzy
    Commented Mar 17, 2015 at 9:27

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