Convert POI files to online map HTML bookmarks


Has there been any discussion about converting POI .csv files to online map (e.g.: HTML bookmarks?

I realize they are not "directly" convertible, but I'm wondering two things:

1. If any/some/most of the maintainers of POI files use (or equivalent) as the basis for their POI .csv files? ...but don't publish them on here because the emphasis has always been on making POI files compatible with PNDs, meaning that many in many cases the HTML bookmarks already exist.

2. Converting .csv files that have geocoordinates & description into HTML bookmarks is basically just a matter of adding the latitude & longitude to the the appropriate URL:

The first line in the "RestAreasCombined_USA" POI file is:

-87.4185 30.57584 AL,I-10,WB,BALDWIN COUNTY WELCOME CENTER, MM65.8 [RR,PT,VM,Pets,HF]|

which can easily be manually translated into this URL:°34'33.0"N+87°25'06.6"W/@30.57584,-87.420694,17z

...and the notes " AL,I-10,WB,BALDWIN COUNTY WELCOME CENTER, MM65.8 [RR,PT,VM,Pets,HF]" could be added too.

I found that google has this

After swapping the lat&long from the original .csv file, pasting them into the dialog at the link above finds the location on a map, much like
But apparently there are googlemaps APIs that can be used to provide this functionality on a more automated basis. But I'm not sure about the details.

If URLs for some/many.most of the POIs don't already exist (I'm sure that varies depending on the POI file maintainer), then is there a good, easy automated method to do this?


Looks like this is

Looks like this is close:

It has a batch mode:

But it would take a lot of manual intervention (though perhaps it could be macro driven?) to use this tool

Maybe this one
is even closer to what's needed?


Maybe a good idea, so go wild and convert them !

Nuvi 2797LMT, DriveSmart 50 LMT-HD, Using Windows 10. DashCam A108C with GPS.

Need an automated way to do it

As far as I know, that would probably take a huge amount of time. I'm looking for an automated way, unless the most of the POI maintainers already have what's needed.

Sounds labor intensive

Elvis-Buys wrote:

... 2. Converting .csv files that have geocoordinates & description into HTML bookmarks is basically just a matter of adding the latitude & longitude to the the appropriate URL:

The first line in the "RestAreasCombined_USA" POI file is:

-87.4185 30.57584 AL,I-10,WB,BALDWIN COUNTY WELCOME CENTER, MM65.8 [RR,PT,VM,Pets,HF]|

which can easily be manually translated into this URL:°34'33.0"N+87°25'06.6"W/@30.57584,-87.420694,17z

...and the notes " AL,I-10,WB,BALDWIN COUNTY WELCOME CENTER, MM65.8 [RR,PT,VM,Pets,HF]" could be added too...

Yeah, and if you're dealing with the Rest Area file, for example, all you have to do is this another two or three thousand times. Yikes! grin


"No misfortune is so bad that whining about it won't make it worse."

Actually, it turns out to be very easy after all...

Well, if I had had to do it as described in the OP, I would have automated the process using a macro/scripting program, which would be possible because the copying & pasting would be from & to consistent locations (spreadsheet & googlemaps).

But I also researched various tools that do different forms of GeoCoding & Reverse Geocoding (the latter of those being closer to what I need, although in most cases the POI files already have the addresses) to see if they had the appropriate batch capability.

Here are a few of the sites that looked promising

There are many, many others. Too many, really, making it more difficult to separate the wheat from the chaff. But none of them seemed to be able to do what is needed for this.

BUT - what follows was one of the first things I tried, but it didn't work (then) - apparently because I forgot the comma between latitude & longitude.

Turns out that this easy approach DOES work, with both and Mapquest.

1. Open a POI .csv file into Excel or other spreadsheet app.

2. Since the POI .csv files have Longitude first & Latitude next (Longitude in Column "A" & Latitude in Column "B", which is opposite from how google, mapquest, etc. do that), columns A & B have to be swapped, resulting in Latitude & Longitude in A & B. An easy way to remember this is, in North America, the negative value needs to come AFTER the positive value and the two values need to be separated by a comma, i.e: "Latitude,Longitude"

2(alt). Another way to do this, while keeping the Excel column arrangement compatible with Garmin, is to build the modified data table on a separate worksheet (e.g.: "Sheet2") in the same Excel file, leaving original worksheet (e.g.: "Sheet1") structure as is, and building Sheet2 using links to Sheet 1, which can easily be done once per column, then filling down for all rows.

3. After doing that, the rest is EASY! Just append the Latitude,Longitude values to the following URLs (inside the quotes) where the space is:
Google Maps: " "
MapQuest: " "

This can be done to the entire list at once, simply by copying & pasting three columns out of Excel as text, then copying and pasting that text into one column in the same Excel file. There are probably other ways to do this too.

Here's an example. It's one line from the Rest Area POI file:

-85.369424 33.667729 AL,I-20,WB,CLEBURNE COUNTY WELCOME CENTER, MM213 [RR,PT,VM,Pets,HF]|RV Dump,-85.369424,-85.369424

I put the URLs like those into a single column in my spreadsheet.

But google maps will find the location even if I paste the first three columns directly from Excel without even appending the Latitude,Longitude onto the end of the URL stub " "

It should be easy to convert that list to a set of bookmarks.

What I'm working on now is preserving the other POI information contained in the POI file... things like whether or not a Wal-Mart is marked as "NOP"

MS OneNote (or something similar) will probably provide a way to do that. The URL is clickable even in Excel, but reading notes on individual POIs from a line-by-line list isn't optimal.

I may be reading this wrong

If you are talking about putting POIs on Google Maps there is a very simple way:

Open on your PC. (do this on your pc signed in to Google and you can see on all your devices signed in to Google)

Before doing the Google Map instructions make ture your file is ready. Go to Excel or something that you can open your CSV file:
On line (1) put these labels
Longitude (this goes in column 1)
Latitude (this goes in column 2)
POI Name (this goes in column 3)
Address (this goes in column 4)
After you have named all four columns and saved it do the following:

Go to Google Maps on PC (not tablet or phone)
Select - Menu
Select - Your Places
Select - Maps
Go to bottom left side and select - create map
Select - import
---you can import CSV, XLSx, LML, or PGX
I use the CSV.
If your file has a problem or is too large it will not work.

You can then go to Menu, Your Places, and Maps when signed in to Google on your phone or tablet or PC and select the Map that has the POI you want.
I put three different POIs on one of my maps so I can see them at the same time and labeled it as such but most of mine I have a different map for.

You can go in and change the icon and color to whatever you want. Even self created icons.

Mary, Nuvi 2450, Garmin Viago, Honda Navigation, Nuvi 750 (gave to son)

You're not reading it wrong...

...but what you're referring to is
a.k.a.: "MyMaps"

It's not the same thing as,
specifically the mobile version of that site, which looks like this:

and (unlike the desktop site) has the button at the right that will hand off the route to the GoogleMaps/Nav app.

As you know, google's "MyMaps" allows users to import data, use it to create & save custom maps, generate driving directions between waypoints, and organize all this onto different layers. It would certainly be reasonable to assume that work could be transferred directly to other google mapping products, including their Android GoogleMaps/Nav app.

Unfortunately, and much to the consternation of many users,!topic/maps/D5_q8Hh9nYE
("Stephen Klingbyll said: Nope the navigation feature in Custom Maps is pretty pointless. So what I was able to do was create a Custom map with all the points of interest around Mt Rainier. I labeled these points as A through W; color coding them for easier identification. Using the mobile app you can load the saved map and select each point. When the point is selected the mobile app gives you the option of navigating to that point. That's it!)
(Snowbird_IL2FL said: I was putting a big hole in the wall banging my head against it ... hard head soft wall. Thanks to this tread, I know it's not me! We are snowbirds, when we use to go south in a motorhome, we used msft Streets & Trips on the laptop with the GPS locator ... could plan the trip. Now in a car, the laptop is too cumbersome. I planned the trip on google maps to bypass some cities, every time I transferred to my phone, it was back the shortest route through the cities. From what I have read here there does not seem to be an easy solution to this problem.)

...routes created in "MyMaps" can only be VIEWED in

Also, the places in "MyMaps" do not show up in the list of "starred places" that is directly accessible in the GoogleMaps/Nav app (with account synch on)

AFAIK, only way to use a route planned in "MyMaps" for navigation in the GoogleMaps/Nav app is to open "MyMaps" into, and then re-create the route by selecting the points one at a time, or start a navigation to each point, one by one.

I have tried using "MyMaps" several times in the past couple years, and its predecessor before that, which IIRC was not a separate entity like "MyMaps" is now. Prior to the introduction of the "new" google maps in early 2014, the custom map creation functionality that preceded "MyMaps" could be used directly for a navigable routing. But AFAIK, not anymore. You can SEE a "MyMaps" but navigating it in the Android GoogleMaps/Nav app requires recreating it.

The reason I was considering the bookmark approach is that search keywords and routes can be bookmarked, and bookmarks are easy to save, organize & sync across different devices.

Also, using bookmarks, I should be able to make automated location corrections, so that the bookmark ends up being google's POI locations, which have a lot of POI info that's not in the POI-Factory lists, which have info (like No Overnight Parking) that google does NOT have.