Refill Terrain

Introducing Refill with shaded relief! We have added two terrain styles for Refill: terrain shading and terrain pattern. The default terrain styles work well for general usage with a “blush” shading treatment and we also offer high-contrast (-dark) options that increases the relief shading, useful when your overlay data is related to elevation. See below:

Refill Terrain Styles

With the v1.1 terrain update earlier in December high resolution terrain data is available in more places in Refill and Walkabout: the Arctic, Australia, Austria, Canada, Europe-wide, Mexico, New Zealand, Norway, and the United Kingdom.

Combined with the other Refill API options for theme colors, levels of detail, label steps, no-texture, and booleans for coastline, bathymetry, transit, and 3d buildings there are now more than 250,000 combinations available to remix! Support for multiple languages adds even more map variations, and fully realizes the power of vector tiles and client-side rendering. Preview all Refill combos »



To see the terrain shape underwater in the oceans and select inland water bodies, turn on the new SDK bathymetry option. Bathymetry comes in two contrast variants as well, customized for each terrain theme.

Blue-gray theme terrain with bathymetry


Colorful Terrain

Terrain is available with all color themes. See the variety of combinations for terrain on two of the light-colored themes below, Refill black and Refill blue.


Refill Black

Refill Terrain - Black Refill Terrain - Black Refill Terrain - Black Refill Terrain - Black


Refill Blue

Refill Terrain - Blue Refill Terrain - Blue Refill Terrain - Blue Refill Terrain - Blue


Dark Themes

We’ve added another color theme to our theme catalog! Inverted now has two options, with light and dark water areas. See the new inverted-dark option in John’s fire map showing the Thomas fire in southern California featuring live updates with latest available satellite observations.

Inverted Color Themes


Refill Inverted Dark

Here are the terrain combinations on the new inverted dark color theme.

Refill Terrain - Inverted Dark Refill Terrain - Inverted Dark Refill Terrain - Inverted Dark Refill Terrain - Inverted Dark


No Texture and Coastline Options

As seen from the Refill combination images above, Refill also has a no-texture option to remove all shader patterns. The no-texture option has flat areas of color instead of the variety of shader patterns. There is also a new theme option of keeping shader patterns on while removing the coastline shader only via a new API global. See Refill sepia with these options below.

Refill Sepia with no texture and no coastline


Overall Improvements

Several improvements have been made to improve the legibility of labels for all the variations of terrain and color themes. Labels have been adjusted to have a 75% halo opacity. See San Francisco in gray-gold below.

San Francisco Labels

Regional borders are now dashed beginning at zoom level 7.

Regional Borders

Rivers and streams colors and widths have been adjusted to work on all combinations of terrain. See rivers and streams in Shasta Lake area in California below.

Shasta Lake area rivers and streams


Levels of Detail

Play with combinations of label steps and levels of detail. Below are a few combinations on Refill inverted-dark.

Levels of Detail and Labels Steps on Inverted Dark theme


Importing Terrain

The example below imports Refill, adds Blue as a color theme, shows more labels, and adds terrain shading. Bathymetry is also enabled via a global.

Order matters: import the terrain themes after all other themes.


    sdk_bathymetry: true
#    sdk_coastline: false


Migrating to Refill terrain, inverted-dark, and no-texture

The following Mapzen basemap versions introduce terrain themes and related options:

  • Refill: 10.0.0