Open spatial data

There is a lot of spatial data available on the Internet, here you can find a lot of links to most important services in Finland and internationally.


Finnish spatial data

  • National Land Survey's Map window can be used to view maps and browse geographic information.
  • Paikkatietohakemisto metadata search can be used to search for information about spatial data sets and geographic information services



International services

Metadata services

  • European commission, INSPIRE Geoportal
  • ESA, Earth online
  • USGS, Data catalogue
  • European Environment Agency, Data and Maps, a lot of data related to environment from all Europe, for example: Natura areas, CORINE land cover, drainage basins, digital elevation model, data about water and air quality etc.
  • FAO, GeoNetwork.
  • Robin Wilson, Free GIS Data, a very long list of open GIS data, at the end also country specific lists.
  • Pangea, Open Access library aimed at archiving, publishing and distributing georeferenced data from earth system research. PANGAEA also allows data to be published as supplements to science articles (example) or as citable data collections in combination with data journals.


Data download services

General vector data

  • OpenStreetMap, please be careful with the free data in Shape format. It does not include all features and has limited support for big or complicated polygons. For example all big lakes are missing and likely all holes in polygons are missing. Use rather data in pbf format. For changing format you may use QGIS or OGR (look for examples here).
  • Natural Earth, general vector data: coast lines, contours, rivers and lakes, glaciers, country borders etc. There are available also designed raster maps suitable to be used as background maps. The map scale is 1:10 000 000.
  • EuroGeographics,  EuroGlobalMap (1:1 000 000).
  • NGA (National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency), VMAP, general vector data produced in 1991-93. VMAP0 data is in scale 1:1 000 000 and is available globally. VMAP1 is in scale 1:1:250 000 and is for free available only from certain parts of world, for example from USA and Russia. More information may be found from Wikipedia. The data is originally in VPF format, in more practical shape format the data can be downloaded from GIS-Lab pages: VMAP0 and VMAP1.
  • WWF, Global Lakes and Wetlands Database (GLWD), lakes, rivers and wetlands. 2004. Map scale: 1:1 000 000 to 1:3 000 000.
  • NOAA, GSHHG, global coastlines, rivers, lakes and country borders, 2013.
  • GeoNames. A database of place names.


Administrative borders


Satellite images

  • ESA:
    • Sentinel images. Sentinel2 images: resolution 10-60m, revisit time: 5 days, number of channels 12, available from Copernicus Open Access Hub. 2015 ->
    • PROBA-V, multispectral images for vegetation cover analysis. Resolution: 100-1000m, revisit time: 1-2 days. 2013 -> Open access to images older than 1 month, from here.
    • Landsat, resolution: 15-120m, revisit time 8 days or more, 7-11 channels, 1972 ->
      • GLS, Global Land Survey, selection of Landsat images from years: 1975, 1990, 2000, 2005 ja 2010.
    • MODIS provides continuous global coverage every one to two days, and collects data from 36 spectral bands. Resolution: 250-1000m. 1999 ->
    • EO-1, 10- to 30-meter multispectral and hyperspectral data, 2000-2017. Unregular capture times.
    • ASTER, resolution: 15, 30, 90m, 14 channels. Unregular capture times.
    • And many other thematic sensors.
    • These and other datasets can be downloaded from several services:
  • AWS Public Data Sets: Sentinel, Landsat, GLS, MODIS and more. Download of most images if for free for users, but for some (inc. Sentinel) download is on Requestor pays basis, ie downloading costs a little bit.

Satellite mosaics:

  • JRC, Image2000, CORINE land cover project's satellite image mosaic.

Digital Elevation Models

  • ESA, EU-DEM, only Europe, 25m.
  • JAXA, ALOS DEM, 30m, 2018.
  • Jonathan de Ferranti, resolution3'' (90m), Based on STRM data, but has been corrected and filled, if the original data has been missing or is wrong.
  • NASA and NGA, SRTM, resolution 1'' (30m), 2000. Available only for: 56° S ... 60° N, for Finland only southern coast is available.
  • USGS, GMTED2010, resolution: 30'', 15'' ja 7.5''.
  • ASTER GDEM, resolution 1'' (30m), 2009. Available for: 83° S ... 83° N. 


Digital Elevation Models including oceans
  • Columbia University, GMRT, is based on several sources, inc. ASTER GDEM ja Multibeam swath bathymetry data (100-m resolution). resolution: 1'' ja 100m (water).
  • NOAA, ETOPO1, two versions: according to bedrock or including also glaciers. Grid resolution: 1'. Includes also water areas.
  • Tom Patterson, CleanTOPO2, resolution: 4,9km.
  • BODC, GEBCO, bathymetry for the world's oceans. Grid resolution: 1' and 30''. 2008.

Land cover / vegetation





  • WorldClim, global weather dataset includes monthly minimum, maximum and average air temperature, precipitation and bioclim. Data is available in grid resolutions 30 arc seconds (about 1x1 km) and 2.5, 5 and10 arc minutes. There are available also modeled data sets about past and future.