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Using with Mapbox

Pure JSReactOverlaidInterleaved
exampleexample interleaved with Mapbox layers

Mapbox GL JS is a popular JavaScript library from Mapbox for building web map applications.'s MapView can sync perfectly with the camera of Mapbox, at every zoom level and rotation angle.

Integration Modes

When using and Mapbox, there are three options you can choose from: interleaved, overlaid, and reverse-controlled.


The interleaved mode renders layers into the WebGL2 context created by Mapbox. If you need to mix layers with Mapbox layers, e.g. having surfaces below text labels, or objects occluding each other correctly in 3D, then you have to use this option.

Interleaving is supported by using MapboxOverlay with interleaved: true. It requires WebGL2 and therefore only works with mapbox-gl@>2.13. See compatibility and limitations.


The overlaid mode renders in a separate canvas inside the Mapbox's controls container. If your use case does not require interleaving, but you still want to use certain features of mapbox-gl, such as mapbox-gl controls (e.g. NavigationControl, Popup) or plugins (e.g. navigation directions, mapbox-gl-draw), then you should use this option.

This is supported by using MapboxOverlay with interleaved: false.

Reverse Controlled

The reverse-controlled mode renders above the Mapbox container and blocks any interaction to the base map. If your use case does not require interleaving, but you need to implement your own pointer input handling, have multiple maps or a map that does not fill the whole canvas (with Deck's multi-view feature), you need this to allow manage the map's size and camera.

You cannot use mapbox-gl controls and plugins with this option. Instead, use the components from


Example: interleaved or overlaid

Both the interleaved and the overlaid options are supported in by the module. This is recommended approach for developers coming from the Mapbox ecosystem, as it can easily switch between interleaved and overlaid rendering, as well as being compatible with other Mapbox controls and plugins.

import {MapboxOverlay} from '';
import {ScatterplotLayer} from '';
import mapboxgl from 'mapbox-gl';
import 'mapbox-gl/dist/mapbox-gl.css';

const map = new mapboxgl.Map({
container: 'map',
style: 'mapbox://styles/mapbox/light-v9',
accessToken: '<mapbox_access_token>',
center: [0.45, 51.47],
zoom: 11

map.once('load', () => {
const deckOverlay = new MapboxOverlay({
interleaved: true,
layers: [
new ScatterplotLayer({
id: 'deckgl-circle',
data: [
{position: [0.45, 51.47]}
getPosition: d => d.position,
getFillColor: [255, 0, 0, 100],
getRadius: 1000,
beforeId: 'waterway-label' // In interleaved mode render the layer under map labels


You can find full project setups in the react get-started example and pure js get-started example.

Example: reverse controlled

The reverse-controlled option is supported by the pre-built scripting bundle, and in React when used with the react-map-gl library. There is currently no easy way to do it under Vanilla JS.

<script src="^9.0.0/dist.min.js"></script>
<script src=""></script>
<link href="" rel="stylesheet" />
<script type="text/javascript">
const {DeckGL, ScatterplotLayer} = deck;

mapboxgl.accessToken = '<mapbox_access_token>';

new DeckGL({
mapStyle: 'mapbox://styles/mapbox/light-v9',
initialViewState: {
longitude: 0.45,
latitude: 51.47,
zoom: 11
controller: true,
layers: [
new ScatterplotLayer({
id: 'deckgl-circle',
data: [
{position: [0.45, 51.47]}
getPosition: d => d.position,
getFillColor: [255, 0, 0, 100],
getRadius: 1000

Additional Information


react-map-gl is a React wrapper around mapbox-gl maintained by the community. If you'd like to use together with mapbox-gl and React, this library is the recommended companion.

All the examples on this website are implemented using the React integration.

When you choose the interleaved or overlaid option, the react-map-gl Map React component acts as the root component, and MapboxOverlay is used with react-map-gl's useControl hook.

When you choose the reverse-controlled option, the DeckGL React component acts as the root component, and the react-map-gl Map is a child. In this case, Map will automatically interpret the view state (i.e. latitude, longitude, zoom etc), so that layers will render as a synchronized geospatial overlay over the underlying map.

Mapbox Token

To use Mapbox, you will need to register on their website in order to retrieve an access token required by the map component, which will be used to identify you and start serving up map tiles. The service will be free until a certain level of traffic is exceeded.

If you are using mapbox-gl without React, check out Mapbox GL JS API for how to apply the token.

If you are using react-map-gl, there are several ways to provide a token to your app:

  • Set the MapboxAccessToken environment variable. You may need to add additional set up to the bundler (example) so that process.env.MapboxAccessToken is accessible at runtime.
  • Provide it in the URL, e.g ?access_token=TOKEN
  • Pass it as a prop to the react-map-gl Map component <Map mapboxAccessToken={TOKEN} />

Alternatives to Mapbox basemap sevice

As of v2.0, Mapbox GL JS went proprietary and requires a Mapbox account to use even if you don't load tiles from the Mapbox server. If you do not wish to use the Mapbox service, you may also consider:

  • mapbox-gl v1.13, the last release before the license change. Interleaving is not supported by this version.
  • MapLibre GL JS, a community-supported WebGL map library. maplibre-gl can generally be used as a drop-in replacement of mapbox-gl, with some of its own features and APIs. More information can be found in using with MapLibre.