Sharing some basic Google Map hacks in this post. Google Map is a life saver when we travel. We do not even need to understand a foreign language to begin navigating.
Google Map can also help us to find new attractions and F&B. In some cases, we do not even need to be “online” to search our destination too (offline download is possible but the file size is huge).
We just need to understand the basics of Google Map to start exploring away, with our feet, wheels, or even from our tablets 🙂
Explore our destination virtually.. before our Holiday.
If there is one Google Map thingy which continues to baffle me, it has to be bus services. I will always go to the wrong bus stop, or I will take the longer bus detour.
I encounter the same issues in Japan and Taiwan! (but not in Singapore).
Is it just me, or can someone provide some tips for me?
Meanwhile, my preferred mode of transport is still subways, hopefully with minimum transfers.
Ok, let me try to share some common tips which I found useful. hope it will be helpful for you too.
Wishing all the adventurers out there “Happy Exploration!”
A) Search nearby attractions
We all know about Johor Legoland, but do we know about NEARBY 煮炒 zhi char or Seafood stalls?
a2)Remove Legoland, and Search “Seafood Restaurants”. NEARBY Seafood restaurants will be listed (screen below).
a3)There are a few seafood eateries along Gelang Patah (we love coconut crabs at Xin Ming Chu) . Just read the reviews of the listed restaurants and make your choice.
a4)Example if I select “Tian Lai”, the next step is to grab the GPS from Google Map.
b) GPS- Simply Right Click on “Tian Lai”, select “What’s Here”
(this does not work on mobile devices)
b1)And the GPS coordinates will appear at the bottom of page (step 1 and 2 screen below)
b2)From screenshot above, we know Restoran Tian Lai is :
-categorised as “Seafood restaurant” (Use this as search term for NEARBY )
-there are 163 reviews
-contact number and opening hours are useful for me too
b3)Add a few more GPS, and you can create your own Map and itinerary.
Taiwan example (link), we plotted all the interesting attractions around Keelung (read our 基隆 Keelung attractions post)
To make it more challenging, go to a non-English country.
I was staying at Asakusa’s K’s House Hostel.
b4)Replace “Seafood Restaurants” from step a2) with “Ramen”, “Cafe”, “Sento” or “Laundry” ( Mrs’ favourite haha) and I have a list of nearby amenities 🙂
For richer search results, you can use native language. Example search “ランドリー” instead of laundry.
Do search for Massage too (マッサージ) 🙂
Just mouse over and shortlist the attractions with consistent good reviews, and grab the GPS.
C) Get second opinions from Tripadvisor and blogs (example)
Not exactly related to Google Map, but we need to get affirmation that our shortlisted Cafes or Ramen outlets are reputable and trustworthy.
c1)We already got the GPS from earlier steps. I will be kiasu and look at the Streetview of building and nearby landmarks too. If need to, I even keep a photo so that I can reference and ask around if I am really lost.
c2)With all the tips above, I suspect many gems are still hidden from Google. Lookout for queues in nearby alleys 🙂
d)How do you capture your GPS at current location?
Have you ever wonder how you can capture a location’s GPS? I am assuming most of us do not have satellite phone.
This is useful for my future reference. I do not have a supercomputer memory.. I can then share the GPS on our blog too (you are welcome). This is especially useful for our road trips up North to Malaysia (read some driving tips here)
d1)Below image from (L-R), I use two Iphone apps to pinpoint my GPS location.
-“Compass” app captures my location in degrees “3°56’21 N 102°21’34 E”
-“DMS Convert” app convert my location from Degrees/Minutes into Decimal “3.93916, 102.359444”
You can actually use your Iphone’s Location Service to reveal your GPS on your Compass, but I am still hesitant to reveal my location to Iphone (paranoid)
Please try this Compass/DMS converter in Singapore before overseas. The compass tool does not need 4G signal to work.
Please share if you have more tips to capture latitude and longitude coordinates.
e)Bonus for those who frequent Malaysia. We found a few more gems during our recent trip to Mount Austin.
These restaurants were found by Googling “Restaurant” near our hotel.
Both restaurants are highly rated and we will definitely visit again.