Best apps for nature lovers for iOS and Android devices

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Ah, the outdoors is absolutely stunning. We should all make an effort to get out once in a while. It’s a great way to clear your mind and relax, not to mention the health benefits associated with fresh air and some light exercise.

Of course, one of the best things about being outdoors is that there’s no technology to distract you. But if you’re a nature lover, you should probably take your phone with you. App stores are full of apps for people who like to get out into nature.

We have already talked about gardening apps which are ideal if you want to get the most out of your garden and have the perfect garden space. However, if you describe yourself as a nature lover, there are a lot of things you need to know. For example, you should be able to guess the name of the plant, discover natural hiking trails that no one knows about, etc. Well, if you want to know everything and don’t know where to start, don’t worry. Here are the best apps for nature lovers for iOS and Android to get you started. let’s start!

1. iNaturalist

Ideal for discovering nature with the help of the community

iNaturalist allows the user to learn about the plants and animals around them. You can take a picture of anything that confuses you and share it in the app with other iNaturalist users. You can also download an old photo from the gallery at any time. Moreover, if you are an expert, the application also has a section exploration. You can check other people’s reviews and comment on the photos in case you know what kind of plant or tree is on display.

Best apps for nature lovers for iOS and Android devices - Android iOS

The app is free and also has a website with much more content than the app, like educational videos, teacher’s guide, etc.

Get iNaturalist for (iOS | Android)


Best for identifying plants through image

iNaturalist offers a community-based approach to identifying plant and animal details, however, if you want to know plant species right away, PlantNet is for you.

Best apps for nature lovers for iOS and Android devices - Android iOS

The UI of the app is very minimal and you can just click the camera button to start identification after opening the app. You have two options, if you are already out, you can click take a photo right away, or choose a photo from your gallery. Once downloaded, choose any part of the plant visible in the image, such as a leaf, flower, bark, fruit, etc. For example, I downloaded a photo of a bengal flower from the internet and uploaded it through the app which showed correct results within a second.

The app also has a section called Wildlife World Where you can find more information on invasive herbs and plants as well as specific plants for specific regions in detail. The app has no ads and is free, which works for me.

Get PlantNet for (iOS | Android)

3. Dictionary of herbs

Better to use medicinal herbs

Herb Dictionary is like an app that can help you harness the healing power of plants in your environment. The app contains a long and comprehensive list of medicinal herbs that you can use raw or with your traditional food. Although the user interface is not attractive, still there is a lot of information like image, botanical name, medicinal use and their properties, such as antidepressants, sedatives, antioxidants, etc. There is other useful information about the usable part of the plant because most of the time the plant is not completely edible.

Best apps for nature lovers for iOS and Android devices - Android iOS

The app is free, but to be able to take notes, mark your favorite herbs, and back up your data to the cloud, you need to purchase the premium version for $4.5.

Get Herb Dictionary for (iOS | Android)

4. Nature Notebook

Ideal for tracking seasonal changes in trees and plants

If you are a nature lover, you will surely be interested in how plants and trees change with the change of seasons. This study is also called phenology. So if you’re already keeping a close eye on things and want to capture and track that data, Nature’s Notebook app is for you.

Best apps for nature lovers for iOS and Android devices - Android iOS

To get started, you need to create a new account or you can sign in with an account you created using the website. You can consult the local phenology collection available in your area and observe with its members or you can also do it individually for places, plants and animals. You can enter new data or choose from the list provided in the application. Monitoring is very easy with this app because the date is filled in automatically and you have to choose options Yes, No and I don’t know what monitoring should be done. Tracking includes things like observed weather, leaf status, flowering or not, etc.

The app is only available in the US, so if you’re anywhere in the world, you’ll have to look for alternatives.

Get Nature’s Notebook for (iOS | Android)

5.GPS Tools

Best General Outdoor Tool

It’s a fact that most phones today have a light bulb, compass, altimeter, etc. These basic tools are usually needed when out in the wild. But the single app that has all these tools plus others like GPS alarm, weather forecast, etc. will provide a better advantage. For this, I use the GPS Tools application.

Best apps for nature lovers for iOS and Android devices - Android iOS

It’s a powerhouse for all the tools you might need. For example, it has a speedometer, in case you are on a bike path and want to keep an estimate of the maximum and minimum speed. Plus quick location feature, so you don’t need to manually open maps every time, and in case of emergency, you can just tap and share where you are and even tap the picture of the environment. Also, the app displays an air quality meter, altimeter, GPS alarm, level meter, and many other tools that can be easily activated with just a swipe.

Get GPS Tools for (iOS | Android)

6. All Trails

Best natural path finder app

If you’re planning a vacation after the COVID-19 situation subsides, researching wildlife parks and sanctuaries won’t be enough. There are important trails for everyone to follow, but you will be surprised to learn that there are dozens of smaller off-road trails to follow and discover more.

Best apps for nature lovers for iOS and Android devices - Android iOS

All Trails is one such app that has over 100,000 trails worldwide curated by app users. You need to register, which can be done quickly with your Google account. The app shows you the best trails near your area as soon as you open it. Moreover, you can also filter them by activity, such as bird watching, nature walks, etc. In case of movement restrictions, you can look for stroller tracks. Wheelchair friendly or suitable. If you try a song and like it, you can also save it to your favorites so you can check it later.

The app has both list view and map view and you can also record route direction, distance and time. The app is free, but I would suggest the pro version which costs $29 per year and allows you to save the map offline, view multiple routes, etc.

Get all courses for (iOS | Android)

7. Atmosphere

Best nature sounds app

All outdoor areas are either closed or open at very short intervals each day. However, you can still simulate part of the environment using apps that create sounds from nature. One such app is Atmosphere.

Best apps for nature lovers for iOS and Android devices - Android iOS

The application has a list of sounds so that you can touch and immediately enjoy the relaxing natural sounds. These sounds are categorized as beaches, forests, urban spaces, underwater, etc. All of these sounds are customizable, so you can add new ones to the existing ones. For example, above the forest you can add wind, raindrops, thunderstorms and many other such elements. You can also adjust the volume of these elements individually to create the sound you want.

The app is free, but you have banner ads at the bottom. Since it is an audio app, I think it can be skipped. But if you still want to remove it, you can purchase the pro version for $3.5.

Get Atmosphere for (iOS | Android)

concluding remarks

In my opinion, PlantNet offers the best way to instantly identify any plant or tree using your phone’s camera. However, if you want a more community-based experience, iNaturalist is a great app to install. Others can comment and learn more about your photos and you can do the same. Since we’re all stuck in our homes, I use Atmosphere to get closer to nature. Plus, it helps me relax and get rid of stress and anxiety.

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