Everyone wants to get more out of their vacation dollar and their precious vacation time. And, more than ever, travelers are seeking meaningful experiences that elevate their vacations above the humdrum and typical. That’s why I’m delighted that people who designed Google Field Trip, an app for your smart phone, have chosen offthebeatenpagetravel.com as one of Field Trip’s content providers.
If you follow this blog or have read my book, Off The Beaten Page: The Best Trips for Lit Lovers, Book Clubs and Girls on Getaways, you know the goal is to bring travel and literature together in a way that enrichs both experiences. Now, as you travel you can obtain “hyper-local” information from the offthebeatenpagetravel.com blog that applies to various points of interest wherever you happen to be on your trip.
Field Trip runs in the background on your smart phone, grabs your location (via cell tower, Wi-Fi or GPS) and shows you nearby points of interest. When you get close to something significant, it pops up a card with details about the location. Or, you can use the map to navigate to a specific location you’re planning to go and view cards that describe everything there from history to restaurants to bargains in local shops. Cards are grouped into categories and offthebeatenpagetravel.com information appears under “Cool and Unique.” If you have a headset or bluetooth connected, it can even read the information to you, which Slate writer Seth Stevenson said is like “having a museum audio guide for the entire world.”
So, for example, if you’re in Salem, Massachusetts, you’ll see a card linked to this blog with information about The House of Seven Gables, made famous by Nathaniel Hawthorne. Or, in Santa Monica, California, you can learn about how the famous noir crime writer Raymond Chandler gained inspiration in that town and how the famous pier is featured in his work.
I find myself more and more reliant on GPS and Google Maps as I travel because the technology makes it so much easier to find my way around new places, especially while I’m driving. Check out the Field Trip app to find another new way to make your travel easier and more interesting.
Check out the Field Trip video. You’ll want to take off.