The Google Maps Elevation API lets me pass a URL like


along with a developer key, and get a result like

   "results" : [
         "elevation" : 1608.637939453125,
         "location" : {
            "lat" : 39.73915360,
            "lng" : -104.98470340
         "resolution" : 4.771975994110107
   "status" : "OK"

My company want to use something like this, but don't have the time for their legal department to go through the license.

Is there something similar with an MIT, Apache, GPL2, or similar license?

Basically, we want to input lat/long and get back elevation.


3 Answers 3


I've been working on opentopodata.org as a free, open alternative to the Google Maps Elevation API.

Request URLs look like this:


and the response is similar to Google Maps:

  "results": [
      "elevation": 502.43035888671875, 
      "location": {
        "lat": 51.875127, 
        "lng": -3.341298
  "status": "OK"

Open Topo Data is MIT licensed. You can host it yourself or use the free public API.

The public API has a number of open DEM datasets loaded, including a 30m global dataset, the 25m EU-DEM dataset for Europe, and the 10m NED dataset for the US.


There is the Open-Elevation API (https://open-elevation.com/) that looks promising

see https://github.com/Jorl17/open-elevation/blob/master/docs/api.md for API examples

Live API sample: https://api.open-elevation.com/api/v1/lookup?locations=41.161758,-8.583933


Clockwork Micro offers an elevation API that uses the 1/3 arc-second dataset provided by the USGS. The coverage is all of the US.


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