Collaboration with Wikivoyage

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Wikivoyage, a free travel guide, is a Wikipedia sibling which (like other Wikimedia projects) is an openly-editable MediaWiki. Unlike Wikipedia, Wikivoyage follows a fixed format where each page is a destination (usually a city, district or region) presented as a free-format description ("Understand") followed by a series of templated lists of points of interest describing transportation ("Get in", "Get around"), attractions and activities ("See", "Do"), shopping ("Buy"), restaurants and nightlife ("Eat", "Drink"), accommodations ("Sleep") and Internet, mail or telephone access ("Connect").

Wikivoyage has made extensive use of OSM since 2013, with the bulk of the effort led by a few German-language users on behalf of Wikivoyage eV, a non-profit thematic organisation.

Wikivoyage usage of OSM data

Since 2013, OSM maps have routinely appeared in Wikivoyage in various contexts:

  • A slippy map displayed in its own browser window with Wikivoyage articles (not listings) as points of interest
  • A slippy map displayed in its own browser window with individual Wikivoyage listings for one city page as points of interest
  • A slippy map displayed inline as part of a city article, with individual Wikivoyage listings from that same page as points of interest
  • A slippy map displayed on the Special:Mapsources page for a specified (lat, long) and zoom level (using a MediaWiki extension)

For example, voy:Oswego contains an OSM locator map with just under two dozen Wikivoyage POIs.

These are generated using various templates on the English-language Wikivoyage project:

  • {{mapframe}} inserts an inline map on a city guide article. Its parameters are (lat, long), zoom level and map layer.
  • {{listing}} creates a listing for a single POI with name, address, type, contact info, hours, price and a one-paragraph description. Various other listing templates (see, do, buy, eat, drink, sleep) are merely wrappers around this. It generates a listing, a map POI and an hCard.
  • {{marker}} creates a single POI with name and co-ordinates, but without the full descriptive text. This is used in-line where a POI is mentioned in body text but not broken out as a full listing.
  • {{geo}} provides the page-level (lat, long) for the city or region. This appears as a link at the upper-right which points to Special:Mapsources, a Wikipedia-style GeoHack server or similar resource.

Names of individual templates and parameters vary between languages; the German-language {{listing}} is named {{vCard}}.

GeoJSON is supported to mark navigation traces on maps for itinerary, such as the Bertha Benz Memorial Route.

Dynamic maps, created from OSM tiles using Kartographer, are used primarily for small cities and individual city districts. Otherwise, colour-coded maps in region articles (where each coloured area identifies the area covered by one article at a lower level) are generated manually by annotating a base map using Inkscape-style editing tools. While a {{mapshape}} capability to superimpose GeoJSON-encoded subregion boundaries onto an OSM base map now exists, auto-generation of dynamic maps is rarely used for upper-level regions.

Most Wikivoyage articles have co-ordinates for the city itself; some have (lat, long) for each individual listing. The decimal co-ordinates (and not merely the civic address) are needed in listings if they are to appear on the in-line OSM Leaflet maps. Photo mapping is supported (a rarely-used image= field in Wikivoyage's listing templates will display a photo if a POI is clicked on the local map) but the photos must be uploaded to Wikimedia Commons for this to work.

As of 2015, Mapframe template on Wikivoyage is used to add dynamic maps where OSM based map from Wikimedia maps server is used as the default map.

OSM usage of Wikivoyage data

OSM is not allowed to use Wikivoyage POI's as a data source, as CC BY-SA 3.0 license used by Wikivoyage is incompatible with ODBL license used by OpenStreetMap. Any data that was coped from Wikivoyage into OSM must be deleted as soon as possible. It is unfortunate as there is substantial potential for overlap for specific POI types (restaurant, bar, hotel, tourism) where Wikivoyage may have greater detail than is on our map. Wikivoyage will not have POIs for non-tourism infrastructure such as cashpoints, filling stations, emergency services and public agencies. If there are many restaurants, Wikivoyage will list a few good options in each genre or price range - not every one - and may favour distinctive local fare over chains. If "City Hall" is listed, it's there for its landmark architecture and not its municipal role.

Third-party usage of Wikivoyage alongside OSM

Third-party mobile apps (such as the now-defunct "WikiSherpa") may include "mashups" which consolidate data from multiple free/libre sources. Some display OpenStreetMap maps with Wikivoyage city descriptions and Wikipedia's detailed descriptions of individual museums and historic landmarks. Sometimes, Wikipedia has a page on one museum, where Wikivoyage provides only city or district-level overview with a listing for each venue.

As Wikipedia and Wikivoyage are freely downloadable under a Creative Commons licence, application developers can import, bundle and repackage data relatively easily. Commercial use is permitted, but requires attribution on a "share alike" basis. OSM and Wikivoyage need to be separately identified, licensed and attributed due to the differing free licences.


The Wikivoyage and Wikidata communities are working on integrating those two projects. See:

See also

External references