Many of you are now starting your summer vacation and probably don't feel like reading about education ideas for a while. Here is a list of more than 60 apps which should help give you a good start to your summer vacation. This article originally included 50 apps but I just updated it to add a few more apps that I recently discovered.
Maps (included on your device) (included)
- This is a great app which enables you to get directions and find out what is nearby. Do a seach and click on the little man to access Streetview, allowing you to see an actual 360 photo of the location.
Trip Advisor (free)
- The popular travel review website has a beautiful app which uses location based software to give you access to reviews of places around you.
- This app helps your organize your travel by keeping track of all your plans.
XE Currency Converter (free)
- With this app, you can quickly get currency conversions.
Wi-Fi Finder: (free)
- Need to know where you can access a wi-fi connection nearby or any any place you plan to visit?
- This attractive app will give you a forecast to help plan your trip.
- Don't pay a fortune to stay in touch with loved ones when on the go. Download Skype and talk on the cheap when you have access to a wi-fi connection.
- Use the location based service to find something nearby, including banks, gas stations, movie theatres, bars, hospitals, parking, coffee, hotels and pharmacies, restaurants, supermarkets and taxis. The map will help guide you to where you need to go.
- Use this app to easily find things nearby including bars, restaurants, cafes, etc.
- This app has tons of connected services to help you find things around you, including those which use augmented reality.
- This app uses your location to give you information about places nearby.
- This app is similar to Wikitude, giving you access to lots of information about places nearby.
- This is a community marketplace for people to list, discover, and book unique spaces around the world.
- A great way to find a great place to stay where you are that meets your budget, whether it be a luxurious castle or an extra room in a person's home.
- This interactive app can help guide you or you can just have fun using it to pass the time.
MotionX GPS ($2.99)
SkyScanner and Hipmunk (free)
- There are two apps available for $2.99 each. One is dedicated to driving and the other is for pretty much everything else. If you have a 3G version of your device, you can use it as a GPS navigation system.
- The app has a a great display and is very sophisticated for the price.
- Both of these apps will search multiple sites to help you find the best deals on flights.
- I personally prefer the layout of SkyScanner but both are great apps to try.
Home Away (free)
- This is the mobile version of the popular website which will help you find real homes to stay in while traveling.
Pocket Guide (Free app and costs 5 Euros for each city guide)
- There a variety of city guides for European cities which take advantage of location based software to give you an audio tour as you explore the city.
Urban Spoon (free)
- This well laid out app will help you find restaurants in your area and helps you search by type of food as well as price range.
- Once you find a place you like, you can search it on the map as well as read reviews about it.
- Also, check this great article from PC World which lists some great travel apps available for Android devices.
Traveling to a place where you don't speak the language? Here are three apps to help you communicate.
Google Translate (free)
- Communicate in virtually any language in the world with this great app.
- Similar to Google Translate, this app will help you translation text or voice into numerous languages.
Word Lens: (free for basic and paid to upgrade)
- Take a photo of a sign and have it translated (does not support many languages)
- Out in nature? Take photos of the plants you find to learn more about them.
- Geo Caching is a community where people hide objects at various locations around the world and you use clues to find them and then replace it with a new object.
- Interested in going on a Scavenger hunt of your own?
- Use a Geocaching app to use you location to find hidden objects nearby.
I suggest syncing a few videos to your iPad before you go so that you always have something to watch when not connected to the internet.
Air Video ($2.99)
- This app will let you convert your videos so that they can be watched on your device.
- There are a few free apps that will help you to find videos to watch, including YouTube, Ustream, WorldTubeHD, Showyou, Squrl and TED.
- For those living in the US, you have lots of great options, including Netflix, Hulu Plus and ABC Player and HBO GO
- Capture just about anything and sync it across all your devices.
- Here is a nice diary/journal app which you can use to document your vacation.
- Use this app to send virtual postcards to really make all your friends jealous of the wonderful places you are seeing.
Social sharing apps:
It is nice to stay in touch with others and share your experiences. Here are some apps to help you do this:
- This app helps you stay connected through Facebook.
- Keep an eye open for a soon to be released app created by Facebook. Rumors are that it will be released very soon.
- There are a few different apps for Twitter, but I prefer this one for its simplicity.
The iPad makes a great device for reading on the go. You can access thousands of books to make sure you don't run out of reading material.
- This free app from Apple lets you download books and put them on your bookshelf.
- Get access to some great audio books.
- A great collection of ebooks
- You don't need to actually have a Kindle to get access to the books.
- Get access to some great books from Barnes and Noble
- This app turns all your social media and favorite sites into an interactive magazine.
- This is your personalized magazine which gets better the more you use it and let it know what you like to read.
- A visually attractive app to view different news sources
- Get news from multiple sources
- Another great app to get information from various sources
- Another great news reader
- You can also get subscriptions to popular magazines such as Time, People, Life, National Geographic, Esquire and GQ. Have a favorite magazine, do a search on the app store and there is a good chance you will find it there.
You can always sync your iTunes library or, if you live in the US, you may be able to start streaming your music library through iCloud.
Here are some other apps to help you enjoy music on the go:
- This app lets you access great music from different genres and learns what you like as you give feedback.
Pandora (free) (not available in many countries)
- Free, personalized radio.
Sound Hound ($6.99)
- Want to know that song? This app gives you instant search and discovery.
Just for fun:
Here are a few games which are great for kids and kids at heart.
Paper Toss (free or paid)
- You could pass hours just trying to toss paper into the garbage can with this app.
Fruit Ninja: ($2.99 with free version available)
- Have fun slicing fruit with this game.
Cut the rope: ($0.99 with free version available)
- A popular game that can be addictive.
Angry birds: ($0.99 with free version available)
- This is perhaps the most popular game (app) with an estimated 1 million downloads every day.
iFish pond: ($0.99)
- If you can't go fishing for real this summer, try this fun app. You can just have fun touching the screen and making the water ripple with the free Pocket Pond app.
Pig Rush: ($0.99 with free version available)
- A fun games that kids love. Who said pigs can't fly?
Touch Physics ($1.99 with free version available)
- Fun and educational at the same time.
Frisbee: (free or paid to upgrade)
- Have fun trying to get the frisbee through the rings while hitting the stars.
Game of Life: ($0.99)
- The popular game has a beautiful app which the whole family will enjoy together. Great for those rainy days when you are stuck inside.
Doodle Buddy: (free)
- A great app that should keep your kids quiet in the back seat of the car for a while.
Drawing Pad: ($1.99)
- This app is not free but is your virtual art drawer in one app. A great way for children (or adults) to express themselves creatively.
Sky View (free), Go Sky Watch (free), Pocket Universe ($2.99) and Star Walk ($4.99)
- Camping under the stars?
- Use one of these apps to point to the sky and sound like a professional astronomer.
ICT for Eductators (FREE)
- I can't finish the list without at least trying to pitch my site.
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That is a pretty long list of apps which should help to get you started. Enjoy the vacation!