Smartphone App Makes City Sightseeing Fun for Families

Have you ever tried sightseeing with your teens or tweens? Do you find it difficult to get them to look up from their cellphones to admire the sights? Then there is a new app, Stray Boots, that is perfect for you and your family. Stray Boots is an app that requires you to look at your smartphone for directions and clues to exploring a city neighborhood. I was given a free NYC Explorer Package to try out.

I love exploring cities. Living in NYC, I often walk around the city. And our family has been on many city vacations. However, very often, while wandering aimlessly, it is so easy to miss the many cool things that might be just around the corner. Stray Boots sends you to a variety of interesting places.

Another problem with sightseeing in cities with my sons has always been that they get bored much quicker than my husband and I do. But since the Stray Boots app makes sightseeing a game where you collect points, teens and tweens may be much more apt to maybe even outlast their parents.

How does Stray Boots work?

  1. Locations – Right now it is available in 14 U.S. cities and The United Kingdom. Great for vacations or at home depending on where you live.
  2. Each city has a number of tours. Each tour costs $12 to download, although every city has one that is only $5 to make sampling the app easier. Or you can purchase all the tours for one city at a reduced price.
  3. Once you purchase a tour, it downloads in seconds. On the front page of the tour it will tell you the starting point (with a little map), how long it should take (most are approximately 2-3 hours) and recommended playing times. Just touch GO! on the page and you are ready to begin.
  4. After that, each page will give you walking directions and a question to answer (such as something on a sign). If you fill the correct answer into the app you get points. Most neighborhoods have about 18-20 challenges.
  5. There is a map in the app and you can get hints to help.
  6. After you complete the challenge, before you move on, a page comes up to give you more information about the challenge you just completed.

We tried out the Stray Boots app and had a great time. We chose one that started in the West Village and ended up in Soho. We have walked through those neighborhoods many times yet we found so many things we never noticed and had fun looking for answers. This is my husband trying on a hat in a  store we were directed to and the challenge was to take a photo.

I loved that we had direction. There was no decision-making. No should we go that way or that way. And since there was no time frame, we were able to relax and get a snack or drink along the way. For  me this is perfect because I hate tours with tour guides. I find there is too much standing still and way too much talk. I can’t wait to tour another neighborhood.

Now that the weather is getting warmer and vacation time is drawing near, you should consider getting these apps, either for a stay-at-home vacation or if you’ll be traveling. If you live in one of these cities, this could be a fun was to spend Mother’s Day. Or, if you know you will be traveling to a city this summer, get mom the Stray Boots app as a Mother’s Day present. Any mom will love a gift that involves family fun.

See also: Lego Art Exhibit Opens in NYC: Photos of Must-See ‘Art of the Brick’

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Comments

  1. Hi Jennifer,

    That is awesome! We are constantly having to take away devices while we are out roadschooling with our kids… seriously, how can they admire everything we are seeing if they won’t get their heads out of the iPad? I think this is a wonderful app to help them participate (in their own way) throughout our journey.

    Thank you for sharing,

    Victoria
    DenSchool

  2. That sounds like a lot of fun!

  3. This is neat! It’s hard getting kids these days to pay attention to the scenery when they are so involved in their phones! Great solution.

  4. What a cool app. I can no longer travel without good apps. :)

  5. Thanks for the great review, I’ll check out this app.

  6. What a great app! This looks perfect for exploring new places on vacation or near home. I’ll have to check it out for the summer.

    I’ve added this page to my StumbleUpon. :)

  7. Thanks! I am going to check it out.

  8. Mikaela Walker :

    Planning to try it this weekend. It sounds fun.

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