Hey adventurers! Planning your next hiking, camping, or cycling trip and want to make sure you’ve got the best apps to make it epic? Then you’re in the right place. I’ve rounded up the top 10 best outdoor adventure apps for Android and iOS USA 2023 to be your trusty guides.
These apps put amazing tools right in your pocket, whether you need to find new trails, book campsites, navigate offline, track your fitness, identify peaks, hunt for treasure, and so much more. Seriously, they’ll level up every adventure!
Best Outdoor Adventure Apps for Android and iOS USA 2023
I’ll give you the scoop on what each one does, their standout features, and how to download them on your phone. There’s an easy comparison chart so you can see which is best for your activity.
Adventure Apps Comparison Chart:
|App||Best For||Download Links||Ratings|
|AllTrails||Hiking, trail running, mountain biking||iOS, Android||✰ (iOS), ✰✰ (Android)|
|Gaia GPS||Backcountry navigation, offline maps||iOS, Android||✰✰ (iOS), ✰✰ (Android)|
|ViewRanger||GPS tracking, wearable connectivity||iOS, Android||✰ (iOS), ✰✰ (Android)|
|REI National Parks Guide||Trip planning, national parks||iOS, Android||✰ (iOS), ✰✰ (Android)|
|PeakFinder||Peak identification, augmented reality||iOS, Android||✰ (iOS), ✰✰ (Android)|
|Geocaching||Treasure hunting, geocache logging||iOS, Android||✰ (iOS), ✰✰ (Android)|
|Roadtrippers||Road trip planning, attractions||iOS, Android||✰ (iOS), ✰✰ (Android)|
|Hipcamp||Campsite booking, glamping||iOS, Android||✰ (iOS), ✰✰ (Android)|
|TrailLink||Multi-use trail discovery||App||✰|
|Cotopaxi||Outdoor gear, adventures||iOS, Android||✰ (iOS), ✰ (Android)|
Top 10 Outdoor Adventure Apps USA 2023
If you like hiking, trail running, or mountain biking, AllTrails should be your new best friend! It’s got the largest collection of trail maps and route data around. We’re talking over 100,000 trails worldwide. Just tap where you want to go and it’ll show you every nearby option.
The best part is you can see how the trail is rated by other users, check out their photos, and read reviews. So you’ll know what to expect before lacing up your hiking boots!
Once you’re on the trail, you can easily track your hike, run, or bike ride with their handy GPS feature. It’ll record stats like distance, speed, elevation gain, and all that good stuff. And save it, so you can review your activity later. Pretty cool!
- Search over 100,000 trail maps by location
- User ratings, reviews, and photos
- Track activities via GPS
- Save routes for offline access
#2: Gaia GPS
If you really want to get hardcore with navigation, especially in the backcountry, Gaia GPS is your jam. It lets you download insanely detailed topographic maps to use completely offline. I’m talking trails through national forests, parks, public lands – everything.
You can plan out your backpacking trip ahead of time on the maps and save your routes. The app has a huge database of routes added by users all around the world, so you’ll never run out of options to explore.
And even if you wander off the beaten path, no worries. Gaia uses your phone’s GPS to track where you are on the map in real time. So you can venture deep into the wilderness but still find your way. Talk about handy!
- Detailed topographic maps for offline use
- Plan trips and share routes
- A global database of user-created routes
- Phone GPS works offline
Say hello to your new digital hiking buddy, ViewRanger! This app is all about making your outdoor adventures more interactive and fun. As you’re hiking, it’ll give you audio updates on stats like distance covered, elevation gained, and your current pace.
You can hook it up to wearables and outdoor gear to automatically sync your hike data. How cool is that? It really makes you feel connected and accomplished as you explore.
For navigation, you can access premium topo maps like USGS ones. ViewRanger also has a next-level augmented reality feature called Skyline that labels peaks when you hold up your camera. Talk about high-tech hiking!
- Audio feedback with hike stats.
- Connect to wearables to sync data.
- Premium USGS topo maps.
- Augmented reality skyline viewer.
#4: REI National Parks Guide
Calling all national park lovers! REI’s awesome app is your ultimate guide to all the U.S. national parks. It’s got interactive maps, fun trip ideas, suggested hiking challenges, and so much good info.
You can browse campgrounds and lodges to book your stay. Check out packing checklists so you know exactly what to bring. Learn all about each park’s unique history, wildlife, geology, and best times to visit.
Plus you can save and share your upcoming park adventures and bucket list with friends right in the app. It’s a total must-have for your next national park trip!
- Interactive maps, trip ideas for all U.S. national parks
- Lodging and campground directories
- Packing checklists for each park
- Infographics on wildlife, geology, history
Want to put a name to all those gorgeous mountain peaks you see? PeakFinder is for you! It uses your phone’s camera and augmented reality to instantly identify peak names and elevations.
Just point your camera at the horizon anywhere in the world, and labels will pop up showing you the peaks in view. Tap a label to see more details like height and other fun facts. How awesome is that?
You can download offline databases with over a million peaks worldwide to use in remote areas with no cell service. It’ll even show your own location, compass heading, sunrise/set times, and more. The perfect high-tech tool for your next summit adventure!
- Augmented reality identifies mountain peaks.
- Database with over 1 million peaks.
- Works offline after downloading.
- Shows location, directions, and more.
If you aren’t already obsessed with geocaching, this app will get you hooked! It opens up a world of treasure hunting adventures.
Geocaching lets you navigate to hidden containers called geocaches all around you using GPS coordinates. The geocaching community has hidden millions worldwide! Inside you’ll find small trinkets and logs to mark your discovery.
As you find caches, you can instantly log your experience in the app, see recent activity, read hints, check attributes, chat with other players, and upload pics. It brings this absolutely addicting outdoor activity to life!
- Navigate to geocaches using GPS coordinates.
- Log finds, read hints, upload pics.
- Interactive community of geocachers.
- Detailed geocache descriptions.
Let’s say you’ve got an awesome road trip on the calendar. Roadtrippers will make planning it a breeze! Just map out your route and it’ll instantly show you all kinds of cool stops and sights along the way.
We’re talking quirky roadside attractions, beautiful parks, tasty restaurants, interesting museums – you name it. You can add places to your trip plan and sync it across devices.
Roadtrippers has helpful local travel guides covering the best of what various cities and areas have to offer. And you can easily share your amazing itinerary with friends who want to caravan along. Vroom vroom!
- Discover interesting stops and attractions along your drive.
- Local city guides for the best restaurants, parks, etc.
- Sync trips and places across devices.
- Share planned road trips.
Let’s talk about camping! Hipcamp makes it super easy to book unique tent camping, RV sites, cabins, glamping options, and more across the U.S.
You can browse listings on public and private land filtered by location, amenities, price, accessibility, and more. Discover those off-the-beaten-path spots you’d never find otherwise.
Hipcamp is also great for recommendations on amazing outdoor activities everywhere you go. And you can even list your own land to host fellow nature lovers!
- Book tent camping, RV sites, cabins, glamping and more.
- Search by location, amenities, price, and accessibility.
- Local recommendations for outdoor activities.
- List your own land to host campers.
Calling all hikers, cyclists, trail runners, and anyone who loves scenic trails! TrailLink is loaded with over 40,000 multi-use trails across the U.S.
Just plug in where you are or where you want to go and start browsing trail options. You can filter by location, distance, amenities, surface type, and more to find just what you need.
Each trail has a map, directions, photos, and user reviews on conditions and experience. Planning your next outdoor workout or bike ride is a breeze. Time to find a new favorite trail!
- Database of 40,000+ multi-use trails.
- Search by location, distance, amenities, and surface type.
- Trail maps, conditions, user photos, and reviews.
Last but not least is Cotopaxi – the outdoor gear brand with a conscience. Their app lets you shop for sustainable backpacks, clothes, and gear while giving back.
You can check out reviews from fellow adventurers to help find the perfect pack or jacket for your needs. Learn about their efforts to ethically make quality products that give back.
The app also has an awesome sense of community. You can join group challenges, share your outdoor trips, and discover new adventures. Get outside and do good!
- Shop sustainable outdoor packs, clothes, gear
- Read reviews from verified owners
- Join challenges and share adventures
- Learn about sustainable manufacturing
Compare The Top Apps By Activity
Check out this handy chart to see which apps are best suited for your favorite outdoor activities:
|Hiking||AllTrails, Gaia GPS, ViewRanger|
|Camping||Hipcamp, REI National Parks|
|Cycling||AllTrails, ViewRanger, TrailLink|
|Navigation||Gaia GPS, ViewRanger|
|Trip Planning||Roadtrippers, REI National Parks|
FAQs About Outdoor Adventure Apps
Do you have questions about using these apps to make your adventures more awesome? Here are some commonly asked ones:
- What activities do the apps support besides hiking?
The apps cover camping, cycling, mountain biking, trail running, backpacking, kayaking, skiing, geocaching, and tons more outdoor fun!
- Do I need cell service or internet to use the apps?
Some features work offline, but you’ll need a connection for real-time data like weather or traffic. Download areas and maps beforehand.
- Are the apps safe for navigation?
They’re great for planning and assistance, but always bring paper backups and share your route for safety. Don’t rely solely on phone GPS in remote areas.
- Can I track my fitness progress over time?
Absolutely! Many allow tracking stats like distance, time, elevation gain, speed, calories burned, and pace across multiple activities.
- Which app is best for backcountry navigation?
Gaia GPS offers the most robust offline maps and navigation tools to confidently venture into the backcountry.
From hike-planning to camping to outdoor challenges and more, these amazing apps will take your next adventure to the next level! Browse through and grab a few to try – I’m sure you’ll find some new go-to favorites.
Let me know if you have any other questions! I’m always happy to chat more about awesome outdoor apps and gadgets. Have an amazing trip!