If you’re planning a long-distance ride and hope to stay off the tarmac, you’ll need to know how to find off-road trails abroad. Sometimes, it can be as easy as zooming in on Google’s Street View or simply taking a detour via a dirt road you like – but for more detailed planning, there are some handy apps and sites that can be useful. Here are some of them:
Although lots of apps and open-source maps are country or continent-specific, a couple of them out there offer worldwide access. Wikiloc can be great for downloading tracks just about anywhere in the world: it’s an open-source app where travelers can track their routes and upload tracks with detailed descriptions. Having used Wikiloc extensively in Ecuador, I’m happy to report it worked a charm.
Although the site doesn’t seem to have been updated in recent months, you can still find a good library of GPX files on all five continents there. Complete with detailed descriptions and photos of the trails, ADV Tracks can be a good additional resource when planning off-road routes abroad.
Because Europe can be a little complicated when it comes to off-road access, the Trans Euro Trail website is your best bet. It’s a collection of off-road tracks all over the continent, and the best part is, it’s regularly updated, so you know the tracks are legal and open to riding. Each country also has its own linesman who you can reach out to for more information and advice.
For Africa, Tracks4Africa seems like a great resource with a live map and some tracks available from races and rallies.
In your experience, what’s the best way to find off-road trails abroad? Share the wisdom in the comments below.