Free GPS hiking app?

Does anyone know of a free GPS hiking app that works when you are offline?

A friend of mine uses Viewranger. He maps routes and it works offline. I haven’t personally used it but it works perfectly for him.

You can download maps for Viewranger and view them offline. Has become my go to. I use Caltopo to plot routes on a computer and then you can move the GPX files to use while hiking, take some learning but an amazing piece of software. Avenza maps works offline and is a nice resource for free topo maps, I tend to use it as a backup.

And when I’m mixing and matching with physical maps like the Slingsby set, I find GPS essentials really great. You can create a quick dashboard that just has what I need to know quickly (Lat/long, altitude, bearing, sunrise/sunset etc) all on one page. Weird how difficult it is just to get your lat/long with most mapping software.

Those have all worked out well for me without spending a cent, which feels a little crazy to be honest :sweat_smile:

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I have used Locus Maps quite successfully. You can download offline maps.


I am a hardcore fan of Avenza Maps, you cant go wrong with the Government issue 1:50000 maps as an overlay. It doesnt have all trails on it though, so I use it in conjunction with Maps.ME. Will definitely check out Viewranger as recommended by others.

I am a big fan of using Komoot when I hike, great tracking and accurate use for hiking and MTB trails. low power consumption and useful for exploring.

I can also recommend Komoot. See
I use a Garmin vívosport® tracker and this syncs with both Komoot & Strava, which I use for hiking & trail running.
When I have issues with my Garmin vívosport®, or I’m doing a long hike, run, then I use Komoot on my mobile phone. You can download routes, which can be used offline.

I use Oruxmaps. I collar cropped and converted all the latest RSA 1:50000 topo maps to Orux format. Oruxmaps free was kicked off the playstore for violating Google ad policy. Orux doesnt have any adverts or allow any adverts. Free version is available on their website. If youve used it for a while you will want to take the paid app. If you want maps let me know. Works offline, you can use old phone as a gps no sim no internet, best there is and no ads. Oh and free app is identical to paid version just one version older.

Thanks Ruth for pointing out Locus Maps, it looks like the paid version allows you to georeference maps in it. Which is really great, as that means I should be able to use digital versions of the slingsby maps as a baselayer to navigate on. Have really wanted that in the Cederberg for ages, having the map I’m navigating on also telling me where the water sources are :sweat_smile:

First android one I have bumped into that will let you do that without a subscription.

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Yeah, I liked the free version of Locus Maps so much that I bought the paid version just to support them :grin:

I think this depends on what you’re looking for in an app.

  • If your mapreading skills are on point and you love a classic 1:50 000, then I’d agree with @Gerrienel that Avenza is a great app to have on your phone.

  • If you want sheer number of trails but are happy to sacrifice some accuracy (open-source data can be riddled with inaccuracies in places but often not to the untrained eye) and functionality, then Maps.Me is a great bet.

  • Komoot looks amazing but I’ve not used it.

  • If you are keen on ultra-accurate maps with detailed info behind the data but are happy to sacrifice on limited coverage, locally-made Forge is a good bet.

Hello ,
as I may mention from European view. Komoot works most easily and also offline, actually promoted by the gravel union website ( love it for offroadcycling and hiking). But you have to pay for full functionality…
Kind regards