Which Apps Should You Have Downloaded When Camping

There are lots of things you should keep on hand for when you go camping. A torch, enough food to last you the trip, water, somewhere to sleep, a map, a compass, and many other useful tools. 

Things have been made a little easier in recent years though, with smartphones giving us access to lots of tools without the bulk of carrying many devices. 

Although you should have a backup of certain tools to keep you safe in an emergency, your smartphone is still more convenient as it hosts everything in one place. Apps can make it easier to find somewhere to stay, to navigate your way to your destination, and to enjoy yourself whilst camping. 

Here are some of the best things to have on your phone when you’re camping.

Finding Somewhere to Stay

Step one of camping is to find somewhere to set up your tent. There are many apps that are provided by National Parks or campsite organisations that let you see the campsites located around you. They can help you to find the nearest toilet and washing facilities and make a booking at campsites. 

Some of these apps include The AllStays Camp and Tent App, WikiCamps, and iOverlander. The latter covers most countries, while the others are focused on a few specific ones like the US and Canada. 

If you’re looking for unique spots to set up camp, apps like Tentrr and Hipcamp might be your go-to options. Tentrr has 730 “glamping” sites you can book and where you can enjoy many mod-cons, while Hipcamp is more like the “AirBnB of camping”, finding you private landowners that will let you camp on their land. 


While it is fun to switch off from the outside world and connect with nature, the weather can sometimes make this difficult. If you find yourself stuck inside your tent to avoid a sudden downpour, having some games on hand will be a good entertainment option. 

The broad range of games available on mobile apps today means that it is possible to download something to cater for just about every interest. Your options include Deal or No Deal, where you open 26 boxes, each containing a different prize value, just like the popular TV show; Brawl Stars, a cartoon styled multiplayer brawler game; or the NYTimes Crossword, that brings you the New York Times’ crossword right to your phone.


Navigation is one of the most important things if you’re going camping in nature. Navigation apps that are designed for getting around urban areas like towns and cities are not necessarily the best options for finding your way around a forest. 

BackCountry Navigator is a good option for this if you have an Android device. It displays mapping information from multiple sources, such as OpenStreetMap and Open Cycle Map and lets you set GPS waypoints to plot out your route. 

Spyglass does navigation a little differently. It uses your phone’s camera to create a heads-up display with augmented reality. You can see a compass and your map overlayed on top of the feed from your phone’s camera. 

For those planning to head up a mountain, Maps 3D Pro might be the ideal solution. It helps you to understand the elevation changes marked by contour lines on a topographic map by representing them in 3D. 

Track Your Trip

Want to remember where you have been so you can go back again? Or perhaps you want to brag on social media about how far you have hiked. Then you need one of the many apps that help you track your journey. 

MapMyHike is a free option for iOS and Android that uses your phones GPS and other sensors to track where you walk. It’ll then use this information to provide you with a map that shows your route, the distance you travelled, and the number of calories that you burned. 

Alternatives with varying features include Strava, and Fitbit. The former has many of the same features, while the latter doesn’t track your route, but will show your steps, distance, and calories burnt. 



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