How to use technology to make the most of your trip into nature?
Renting a campervan and taking to the open road is the perfect way to enjoy the sunny spring days. While some prefer to leave technology behind on their road trip, phone apps can be undeniably useful on a campervan adventure. From finding yourself a parking space to identifying wildflowers, there’s a way to make everything easier with your phone. Save yourself some stress on your next road trip by downloading these helpful apps before you leave.
The best apps to use when planning your road trip
If you want a hand in planning out your route, the Roadtrippers app is a convenient way to map out your itinerary. Simply add in your list of destinations and Roadtrippers will do the navigating for you. You can even browse through the app’s selection of popular attractions, nature parks, recommended restaurants, and everything else that you could find along your drive.
If you’re planning on going out into the country and are worried you might get lost with no phone reception to help guide you back, then try downloading the maps you will need from Maps.me . This very helpful app allows you to obtain detailed maps in advance that you can access when offline to help pinpoint your location. You can even add in your own points of interest to help you find your way back to a stunning view or a scenic hike on your next trip.
ParkMobile is a great app that lets you look up parking spaces in over 3,000 locations across the US. You can also reserve, pay for, and extend your parking stay, all from your device. Don’t waste any more time roaming the streets for a free space, when you can find one instantly on ParkMobile. The app also helps you locate your vehicle so you never have to forget where you parked again.
An unexpectedly useful app that you might want to have on hand is the Flush – Toilet Finder app. As the name suggests, this app helps you locate all the public restrooms which are available in your area. Although a lot of camping vehicles come with an onboard bathroom, a lot will not have the space for these facilities and you won’t be spending all day at your chosen campsite. Whether you’re in a city or on the road, Flush will guide you to the nearest bathroom so you don’t have to awkwardly find a polite local to ask.
Technology that helps you appreciate nature
Every weekend could be another chance to escape into the great outdoors. The world is overflowing with incredible creatures and fascinating plants but some of nature’s wonderful secrets are easy to miss if you don’t know what to look for.
Any budding explorer who wants to learn the difference between a poppy and a peony out in the field should download a plant identifier app. One of the best free plant identifying tools available right now is PlantNet. This handy program allows users to upload a photo of flowers, trees, cacti, or any other type of vegetation, and the algorithm works to give you the name of that species. PlantNet boasts over 20,000 plants in its database and the app even helps scientists study a region’s biodiversity using users’ anonymous photos.
Bird watching is becoming increasingly popular as more people are bringing their binoculars on their peaceful countryside walks. If you enjoy bird watching but can never seem to identify the species you just saw, then there are many great apps that might really help you out. Merlin Bird ID is a free app that offers users the chance to figure out a bird’s species using photos or sound recordings and keep track of their sightings. Any decent picture or clear recording of a bird call should be enough to identify that bird, but if you only got a quick look before it flew away, you can also answer some simple questions to help narrow down the list or even look up regional species to see if the answer is there. The Audubon Bird Guide also identifies birds using photos, recordings, or questions and is focused on North American birds.
If you want to learn to read the actions of the animals around you then the amazing iNaturalist app is what you need. This useful app is designed to spread awareness of nature’s awesome biodiversity and information added to the app by users helps researchers keep track of the flora and fauna of the world. As well as identifying plants, the experts and locals using iNaturalist can help you identify an animal from pictures of that animal, its tracks, or its droppings.
And finally, anyone heading into one of America’s astonishing national parks should download the official National Park Service app. This app covers over 400 parks across the states and contains everything you need when visiting one of these great wild places. Not only can you find information on all the wildlife and wildflowers found around a park, but you can also find up-to-date maps, trail guides, and other park information to peruse as you explore.
Don’t forget your entertainment
While the main purpose of a camping trip is to lose yourself to nature, spending a few hours getting there on the highway can start to get dull. Remember to spice up your day with some epic driving music, which you can download in advance using Spotify, Apple Music, YouTube Premium, or a number of other music apps.
In the evenings, you may prefer to sit around the campfire as you gaze up at the stars. But when the cold starts to set in, there’s nothing wrong with getting under the covers and watching some shows. If you won’t have internet access at night, make sure you download your favorite episodes on Netflix, Prime Video, HBO Max, or whichever streaming platform you enjoy.
So, there are all the useful apps you’ll need for your next big adventure into the great outdoors. If you’re desperate for your next road trip but don’t have your own campervan, simply browse our collection of comfortable and affordable camping vehicles and start planning your next drive. If you own a campervan and aren’t using it at the moment, then you could earn some passive income by renting out your campervan to other adventurers on our website. Join us here this Friday to read about all the best places to visit to see the wonderful wildlife of California.