If you’ve found yourself searching for a cycling route planning app, you’ll know there is no shortage of options. The best cycling apps out there can help you train by showing your speed, distance, route and other handy metrics and allow you to plot a route across unknown terrain or simply discover new places to ride. We’ve put together this article to help you choose between five of the best cycling route planning apps currently available to download.
Komoot is a popular route planning and navigation app that allows you to generate routes based on your preferences, such as ride type, terrain or rider ability. Routes can be planned and downloaded to either your cycle computer or smartphone. If you are planning a trip, you can even use your desktop to make routes at home before downloading via komoot.com/discover.
When you are ready to ride, Komoot syncs your data across all devices, for example, Apple Watch, Android wear, Wahoo or Garmin devices, to name a few.
The Komoot app is free and includes one free regional map. Users can then purchase additional regional map packages or a world pack to unlock every region globally.
Strava has earned a name for itself as one of the best cycle route planning apps. It’s easy to see why it’s so popular. The app allows you to plan routes, view previous rides and track performance metrics such as distance covered, calories burned, pace and heart rate, all from your smartphone.
Strava is a social fitness-sharing platform where you can share video clips, photos and tips with other Strava users and compare your stats on leaderboards for popular routes. Strava offers a free version, or you can subscribe to access additional features.
Ride with GPS is another app that has gained quite a following in the cycling community. The browser-based system allows you to create and find rides and then download them to your device.
RideWithGPS has two modes. The first is where you can plot your route using the interactive map, or you can choose to search for nearby routes to explore.
Once you have chosen your options, download your ride to a device for use on the road. Like other apps, RideWithGPS offers a free or paid version.
It might not be the obvious choice for cycling route planning, but Google Maps has a lot to offer. The free app is easy to use, just type in your destination, and Google Maps will show you the best routes to get there and display the estimated time, distance and live traffic updates.
Google’s real-time navigation system will also reroute you if traffic conditions change and a safer route is available. The app also has businesses you might encounter on the route saved – looking for a cafe pit stop? Just pop that into the search as a via point for a list of nearby options. Google Maps doesn’t offer a route-building option like other cycling apps, but it can certainly get you from A to B without any issues.
Bike Citizen is a great smartphone route planning app that can help you find the best routes for your ride. It has a great feature where you can input the type of bike you are riding, and it will avoid any unsuitable surfaces for your setup. The route planner also informs you of elevation profiles so you are not taken by surprise by a steep climb.
The app also lets you know about points of interest along your ride, making it a great addition to any cycling trip, especially when exploring new areas. Maps can be downloaded and used offline, or you can use the live GPS option.