When working with a spatial database, it is often convenient to make a sanity check for a location of a point by viewing it on Google Maps (or any other online mapping service).

Copying the lat/lon is tedious - it requires me to manually copy-paste data from the console to the browser, and since st_asText order (lon, lat) is the opposite of Google (lat, lon) I have to do it twice and add a comma in between. Impractical for fast checking a dozen or so points.

How do I generate a valid Google Maps or a Bing map link from a PostGIS geometry?

1 Answer 1


PostGIS lat-lon

This problem agonized me for a while, so I wrote PostGIS lat-lon. It converts any geometry to a lat-lon pair, a TSV tuple or a Google / Bing Link.

In OSX console, links are clickable, so no copy-paste is required.

Usage Example:

SELECT latlon(geom),
FROM (SELECT st_geomFromText('POINT(2.294609 48.85835)', 4326) as geom) sq;

-[ RECORD 1 ]-+---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
latlon        | 48.8583500, 2.2946090
latlon_parens | (48.8583500, 2.2946090)
latlon_tab    | 48.8583500      2.2946090
latlon_google | https://maps.google.com/maps?q=48.8583500,2.2946090&ll=48.8583500,2.2946090&z=17
latlon_osm    | https://www.openstreetmap.org/?mlat=48.8583500&mlon=2.2946090#map=18/48.8583500/2.2946090
latlon_bing   | https://www.bing.com/maps/?v=2&cp=48.8583500~2.2946090&lvl=18&style=r&sp=point.48.8583500_2.2946090_geom

Please Contribute! If you have any time-saving PostGIS functions, I will be happy to accept any pull requests.

  • Personally, I just use a spatial view (cast to EPSG:3857 or EPSG:4326) in QGIS with the OpenLayers plugin to overlay an OpenStreetMaps or Google satellite imagery basemap. That's an easier way to sanity-check polygons and lines. Mar 7, 2016 at 18:45
  • True, and it's a very useful tool indeed. But sometimes a link is handy. For instance, SELECT name, latlon_google(geom) FROM places will give me a quick link to see where a certain place is by its name. In QGis I will have to start filtering.
    – Adam Matan
    Mar 7, 2016 at 18:47

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