Alternative to Google Maps to draw (bike) directions?


Since Google Maps Classic no longer allows exporting directions into a KML file, I need to find an alternative to draw routes.

My requirements:

  • No brainer: A for source, B for target, add destinations after drawing a route, export to KML/GPX

  • Since I use the routing service to draw bike routes, the application should let users force the route to go through such and such way instead of following roads

  • Remember choice to show or hide bike routes; By default, Google Maps always shows them, but I don’t like it (I don’t use them, and they make the map harder to read)

Nice additions:

  • The route should show grade/elevation in color (eg. green, blue, red), so that users know visually if some route is tough and should be avoided unless they’re fit and don’t mind getting all sweaty

  • Hide buildings. They make the map harder to read, and have no value for routing. That’s why I prefer to use MapQuest instead of Mapnik

  • Provide short URLs to route for easy sharing

There’s a list of OSM-based routing services on Wikipedia. Does someone know if any of them provide the features above, and if not, if there are other sites I should check?

Thank you. perhaps

Thanks but its Track Creator doesn’t display source/destination fields

Also, it doesn’t seem to allow users to “pull” the route after it’s drawn to force it to go through other locations.

And why don’t you use the new Google Maps?

All known Routing solutions based on OSM are collected in the OSM wiki at

Please try all online and offline routers that are available quickly, and tell us what comes near your aims.

It’s not as easy to use: It first requires creating a new map, while Classic simply prompts for addresses, draws route, and provided link to KML route; and New doesn’t prompt for addresses.

Classic was just much easier and faster to use. Too bad Google made that decision.

Thanks but I do know that list, since I mentioned it in my post. It’s kind of the point of a forum to save time by checking if other people already have the answer to a question before investing one’s own time evaluating solutions.

So at this point, it looks like there’s no good alternative:

  • OSM-based solutions don’t have the same interface, and since OSM seems to often lack street numbers, it’s not much help when drawing routes in cities

  • As for Google-based solutions, there’re heavier to use than GM Classic (RideWithGPS, Endomondo, etc.)

Thank you.

Have a look at these for cycle routes (I think they are currently UK/Europe only).

I would suggest OSRM and GraphHopper, but at least OSRM has only basic car routing in it’s demo instance and therefore would require an own installation.

Thank you, they look good.

Like OSR, GraphHopper doesn’t seem to allow “pulling” the route after it’s drawn.

But at this point, OSM-based solutions aren’t as good as Google-based solutions to draw routes in urban areas because streets in OSM may/often lack numbers. I tried a few addresses, where OSM either wouldn’t find them or just point to the street but not the number where I wanted to go.

So it looks like Google Maps EngineLite, a.k.a. Google Maps New, is the least bad alternative to Google Maps Classic. looks good:

  • From/To fields

  • Allows pulling route after it’s drawn

  • Exports to GPX, but GpsBabel can convert to KML (possibly by downloading a route from the web)

  • Can share route through URL

  • Map more readable than Mapnik (but not as good as Google’s)

It’s OSM-based, so not as good as Google at pointing to actual addresses, but it’s no big deal.

My favourite online tool for planning bike trips is
It uses google maps as well as OSM for routing (walking/cycling/driving) and shows excellent altitude profiles of your route.
Exports to GPX, KML or CSV format.
Many sharing possibilities (private, public, friends only)
Multiple map options (Google, OSM, Esri, USGS)
You can also use it as app for mobile devices.