Top 10 Apps for Smarter Camping

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Since Apple launched its iPhone in 2007, smartphone use has exploded around the world and is not just limited to tech-heads and teenagers. It is believed around 76 per cent of Australians now own a smartphone (, 2017).

Personally, I can’t imagine travelling around our beautiful country without one. They’re great for communicating; either by text, voice or video, but it’s not the communication alone that makes smartphones and tablets so useful; the software and the apps (applications) that run on them make the technology vital for campers.

There are millions of apps out there for both Apple and Android users – some cost money but there are hundreds of thousands of free ones as well.

Even the most technologically ignorant of us can use our smartphone or tablet to plan our holiday, help us find our way, make the drive there more pleasant, learn about our country and, yes, even occupy ourselves when we have some down time!

1. My Wheels Australia


iOS and Android


This app was developed by Crime Stoppers SA and allows you to add details about your car, caravan, boat or bike; in fact, anything that has a registration or serial number! If anything is stolen or damaged, all the information you need to notify the police or your insurer is at your fingertips. You can even file a police report from the app! No need to cart a paper file around the country containing all this information.

2. WikiCamps Australia


iOS & Android


This crowd-sourced database is an absolute must! It provides detailed information about campgrounds, caravan parks, hostels, day stops, points of interest, dump points and information centres. It’s beauty lies in the fact that sites can be added, modified and shared by WikiCamps users, making it both useful and up-to-date.

Use the camping checklist and the trip planner for your next road trip; it can even be used offline.

3. Waze


iOS & Android


Google’s Waze is the world’s largest community-based traffic and navigation app. Drive with Waze open to contribute real-time traffic information and receive reported alerts including accidents, hazards, mobile speed camera locations and road closures.

It’s particularly useful for longer drives in built-up areas that have other cars using Waze. Learn the voice commands to give instructions to the app or get a passenger to make updates as required; using a mobile phone while driving is not only dangerous, it’s also illegal!

4. LiveTrekker


iOS & Android


We all like the idea of keeping a journal while we’re travelling and LiveTrekker allows you to build a digital memory of your journeys, with your smartphone or tablet. Simply start your trek (the GPS will record your movements) and add photos, video and comments (spoken and written) along the way (and later), before publishing your journey. Can be kept private or shared with friends via Facebook, Twitter, email or SMS.

5. Fuel Map Australia


iOS & Android


This is a nifty little app from the people at WikiCamps. Fuel Map Australia is a crowd-sourced database of petrol stations and fuel prices across the country. App users update information and there’s a handy fuel log that can track your fuel purchases and economy.

6. Surface Level (iOS) or Bubble Level (Android)



It’s a simple task that creates all sorts of problems if you can’t get it right. Use Surface or Bubble Level to check the level of your caravan/camper. One less piece of equipment you need to pack! Surface Level is part of iMetal Box ($1.99), which has 8 handy tools; flashlight, spirit level, surface level, ruler, protractor, battery info, stopwatch and a handy conversion tool.

7. WiFi Map


iOS & Android


The world’s largest registry of wi-fi hotspots and the passwords required to access them. You’ll still need to connect to the wi-fi hotspot once you’re within range. An annoying feature is the ads that regularly pop up.

8. Beachsafe


iOS & Android


Find the nearest beach in seconds and check the weather, surf conditions, hazards and nearby facilities. This is an incredibly useful little app produced by Surf Life Saving Australia.

9. Wolfram Sun Exposure


iOS only


It’s not free but at this app will calculate how long you can stay in the sun without burning based on your skin type, location, time and the SPF of your sunscreen. A few other weather-related features add to its usefulness.

10. 60 Great Short Walks Tasmania


iOS only


Everything you need to know before you go for a walk in the Apple Isle; from a gentle stroll, to a physical challenge, a seaside ramble or a long day’s outing. The walks are located throughout Tasmania and can generally be accessed from major roads and include a range of environments.


Ian enjoyed caravanning with his family during the 1970’s. With adulthood, came work in the SA school sector as a teacher, school and curriculum leader, plus the odd break in his parent’s van with his wife and 4 children. Ian loved using technology in his classroom and managed state projects to promote the use of technology in schools, developed distance education curriculum and edited and wrote for various education journals. In his retirement, Ian and his wife are doing the ‘grey nomad thing’ in their hybrid camper.


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