If you’re not a beach lover, and you don’t consider trawling through bustling city streets as the ideal getaway. There’s a good chance that you’ve succumbed to that ancient urge to get out and see the countryside, walk amongst the tree’s, along river banks, hiking up hills and maybe even pitching a tent and indulging in a spot of camping!
If that sounds like you, and you plan to take your smartphone with you, I have searched high and low for the best iOS and Android apps, which could be of use to you while on your adventure. So, take a look and find out which apps may meet your needs.
(Have a look at our article on the Best Gadgets for Hiking and Camping)
goTenna the Hiking app
Most people love to hike and camp because it gives them the feeling of being off grid, sufficiently far enough away from civilisation to get a Bear Grills mentality. However, what if you’re not alone and need to communicate with a group member, what if there’s no WiFi or phone service anywhere near you?
That’s where the goTenna app and its companion device could come in and give you the ability to communicate via text messages. Available on and compatible with a minimum of Android 4.3/iOS 8.4 and higher, the app works alongside the goTenna device via Bluetooth pairing and requires no Satellite signal, Wi-Fi or even phone service to enable communication and the sharing of maps and location information.
All you need to do before going off the grid is download some maps, which are available for free and then you can share your location, request the location of others and share points of interest all via GPS. Features of the app include: Send & receive messages for free, Share locations on offline maps for free, Instant message transmission if within range. Plus there is delivery confirmation and automatic message retry for one-on-one messaging. Individual and group messaging, send “Shout” broadcasts to persons within range, interoperable with iOS and Android devices.
Planning a trip can be time-consuming and frustrating especially if one person is doing the work for an entire group. So to make things easier, the Camping Checklist app does what its name suggests and can save you valuable time and frustration at a later date.
So if you want to make sure that you’ve forgotten anything before setting off on your trip. Take advantage of this app’s ability to enable you to create your own equipment checklists for which you can manually tick off each item as you have it. Or share the list with your group/partner and choose from a variety of preinstalled checklist templates that list everything you need to get you on your way.
Benefits of using this app include a simple, clean, easy to use application that keeps you and your groups planning on track. Plus it allows you to stay productive pre-trip by noting down what’s important and anything you think you may have missed. In fact, the app does not try to reinvent the wheel; it is just a way to keep manual track of what’s needed and enables the use of other people’s list templates.
Need some inspiration? The Yonder app can help you with this by connecting you with people, places, and experiences that can give you the inspiration required to plan a great adventure. Whether you want to go hiking, rock climbing, kayaking, biking or take part in other outdoor pursuits. Yonder will show you where you can find it and allows you to share your own experiences with other the world over.
However, it is not just a socially orientated app; it also features preinstalled maps with locations of interest and things to do. So whether you’re a back garden explorer or an outback adventurer this app has something for you.
Features and benefits of the app include the ability to discover thousands of geo-located images and videos around the world. Share memories of your trip through photos and videos, search and browse a database of over 20,000 destinations and experiences. Plus explore and follow others who are taking part in over 25 exciting activities such as biking, climbing, skiing, hiking and more.
When it comes to doing almost anything outdoors in the UK, this app from the Ordnance Survey is probably one of, if not the best apps available for hikers, ramblers, cyclists and more. It allows a user to track their location using a smartphone’s GPS and search for sites on a 1:250 000 scale road map by place name or postcode while offline.
And if that scale is not enough, you can purchase OS Landranger (1:50 000) and OS Explorer (1:25 000) close-up maps of the places you would like to visit. And once you have them those maps will always be available on your device to use when you see fit. Planning your trip with OS MAPFINDER is easy too, as it allows you to think ahead and discover historic sites and areas of outstanding natural beauty, all-in-all this is an excellent app for adventurers. As it makes it easy to learn more about what the British countryside has to offer.
If you love climbing mountains or just like to look at them, PeakFinder is the app that will keep you informed as to what you are seeing. All you have to do is pick up your smartphone and point its camera towards a point of interest, and it will then allow you to learn about the landscape.
Again this is another app, which works perfectly outdoors as it can make use of the GPS functionality of your handset, so no internet connection is required anywhere you care to use it. And you’ll never find a peak or hill that is not in the apps database because with over 250,000 installed, and everything you need to know about them at your fingertips it’s the perfect explorer’s companion.
Features of the app include – Quick rendering of the surrounding countryside up to a range of 300km/200miles, Works offline anywhere in the world and can give information on more than 250,000 peaks and points of interest. Plus you can make use of its digital binocular view, to select locations slightly out of view. Other useful features include the ‘Show me’ function for visible peaks, make use of GPS to get your current location. And the ability to use maps (online) for viewpoint selection, and finally you can enter your coordinates manually to gain more precise detail.
This app is aimed at those who love to hike and claims to offer an entirely new experience by providing the features required to track and record hikes. Making use of GPS tracking, the apps developers regard the safety of its users as their highest priority and have included features within the app that can assure that. Along with tracking, there is a permanent geolocation feature, plus a record chart and the choice to create a journal that a user can share with family and friends.
Also, Quechua Tracking gives you the ability to send a text message or a screenshot of your position to emergency services via MMS. However, this could be limited due to poor network coverage and as such it is recommended that users purchase and download a map to their device for future use.
The main features of the app include the ability to track your position via GPS and then share that position via text or MMS. Plus it records elevation, places visited and has a Mountain record chart. All of which can be shared with family and friends or added to a hiking journal documenting the excitement of the experience.
This app is available on Android for free