There are many mobile applications on both the App Store and Google Play that will make life easier for those who enjoy outdoor activities. In this list, we’ve brought together the best hiking apps for iPhone and Android that you can use for things like navigating nature, and recording and sharing activities and routes.
The Best Hiking Apps
- Gaia GPS
- Star Walk 2
- Seek by iNaturalist
- FarOut Guides
- Hiking Project
As one of the best GPS apps for hiking, AllTrails allows you to explore more than 400,000 hand-curated trail maps plus reviews and photos crowdsourced from hikers and trail runners worldwide. Using the app, you can further customize your trail search by length, difficulty, elevation gain, route type, and amount of trail traffic, or find trails with waterfalls or hot springs.
You can also easily share your hiking activities on social media such as Instagram and Facebook on AllTrails, where you can add the routes you want to your favorites, plan your own route, and stay true to your planned route. The app also allows you to communicate with other hikers.
Gaia GPS is one of the best GPS apps for hiking, with advanced navigation features allowing you to find your next hiking trail, create your own tracks, or explore camping options along the way. It is a robust app packed with pre-existing roadmaps, terrain maps, topographic data, and live weather information.
Gaia GPS hosts hundreds of professional maps including Nat Geo Trails Illustrated, USFS and high resolution satellite images, and you can easily find your way back by leaving a breadcrumb on the map.
Also Read: The Best Weather Apps for Android
Also Read: The Best Weather Apps for iOS
Star Walk 2
Using the stargazing app Star Walk 2, you can explore celestial bodies, see how they move in the sky, and figure out where to look for the stars or planets you want to see while hiking. The app offers a real-time sky map, 3D constellation models, deep sky objects, and even a section for astronomical news.
The star map on your phone follows your movements when you raise it and point it toward the sky, utilizing the gyroscope built into the device to align the map on the screen with the stars visible from your position.
Seek by iNaturalist
Next on our list of the best hiking apps is Seek by iNaturalist, an app helping you identify wildlife, plants, fungi, and even the organisms all around you that you notice while going on an adventure. iNaturalist is an initiative of the California Academy of Sciences and the National Geographic Society. The revamped interface and the ability to earn badges for finding different types of birds, amphibians, plants, and fungi make this a serious upgrade.
No registration is required, Seek is also a good option for everyone who wants to learn more about the world around them and for families who want to spend more time together.
Also Read: The 10 Best Apps for Cyclists
Ramblr is one of the best trail apps designed for outdoor types, hikes, and mountaineering trips, for the ones who want to document and log everything related to their trips. The app allows users to record everything from their route, along with stats like average speed, distance traveled, and the highest point, as well as geo-tagged audio, video, images, and text.
Additional features include built-in mapping, and the ability to upload and share your trips or check where other Ramblr users are going.
As one of the best trail apps, Komoot allows you to plan the perfect root for your hiking adventure. Using the app, users can set routes, view surface conditions, difficulty, distance and altitude. Komoot also comes with offline map support, and free users can download one detailed map region for free, unlocking more maps and features with in-app purchases.
Turn-by-turn voice navigation, an accurate vocal navigator that doesn’t divert your attention from your surroundings, is another significant feature of the hiking app.
Also Read: The 5 Best Budget Apps
Outdooractive, one of the best hiking apps for Android and iPhone, allows you to browse through route suggestions for hiking, plan and create routes based on your preferences, and record your own tracks to include duration, distance, altitudes and an interactive altitude profile.
In the app, which also has Apple Watch and Wear OS support, you can save offline maps and continue to follow them as a standalone on your smartwatch. Using the latest vector technology, Outdooractive says that you can enjoy the high-resolution image of all maps and at all zoom levels, and increase your hiking experience.
Outdooractive on the App Store
A highly reliable navigation guide app for long-distance exploration, FarOut offers more than 200 hiking, biking, whitewater rafting, and rowing navigation guides worldwide. The app includes guides in popular long-distance hiking routes worldwide, such as the US, the UK, Europe, the Middle East, and South America.
With FarOut’s Check-in function, you can let your loved ones know precisely where you are, giving you and your family peace of mind.
FarOut Guides on the App Store
Also Read: The Best Apps That Pay You to Walk
Hiking Project, which includes more than 74,000 miles of trail to hike and regularly adds new trails to its database, is among the best hiking apps for both iPhone and Android users. The app, which you can use to download the trails to use offline, also suggests the best hikes close to your location or the places you are looking for.
Hiking Project on the App Store
If you are looking for an app that will take care of your safety while hiking, it would be useful to take a look at Cairn. The security measures offered by the application include showing your contacts your GPS location during your hike, sending notifications to your contacts when you are past due, and sending rescue advice to your contacts that will enable them to make quick decisions in case of a rescue.
Offering ETA, live distance, and elevation gain statistics for more than 4000 hiking routes, Carn also allows you to customize, record and save your ETA statistics.
Also Read: The Best Health Apps for Android
Also Read: The Best Health Apps for Apple Watch