Plan your walks online
Websites now let pedestrians mark favourite walking zones, share it with friends.
Online walk planners are gaining popularity across the city. These virtual mapping devices allow pedestrians to use satellite and maps to find streets best suited for regular walks. The devises are available on websites which also several services such as calorie calculators, walking forums to aid community building and updates of walks taking place anywhere in the world.
Map My Walk
For those looking for tested venues, log on to mapmywalk.com. The website offers services from mapping one's own walk and then making it public to accessing other well-known walks in the city. Upon clicking the start walking tab, the website offers a Google map of your city. Here, you plot your daily trail or create a new one that you have discovered. Users can either choose to restrict their trail among friends or display it to the public.
To promote community building, the website also allows users to create walking groups and forums to share details about any walking event. Says Vaibhavi Parekh, yoga instructor, "I started a walking group in Goregaon and now have around 15 friends and walkers. This service helps community building and promotes a healthy lifestyle."
Log on to www. mapmywalk.com
GPS My City
Venture out on your own with a personal tour guide in the palm of your hand. Load your iPhone with a detailed city map and self-guided walking tours from GPSmyCity.com. This acts like a local guide. You can check out the city's famous monuments, landmarks, museums and specialty stores or find hidden gems.
Walking tours include Mumbai sightseeing, museums and art galleries, places of worship, a nightlife tour, a Malabar Hill tour and a shopping tour. There are two versions — Lite and Full. The Lite version includes a detailed city map, which you can use to navigate the city. Tarun Shah, banker, says, "The map is built into this application, so you don't require an Internet connection and it's not costly."
Log on to www. gpsmycity.com
Google's mapping tool suggests walking directions when you key in your start, end and intermediate destinations. One can zoom in on the satellite view to see if the streets suggested have a sidewalk or any other pedestrian safety measures. This tool only routes walkers alongside roadways and ignores pedestrian trails. The distance between each turn and the total distance is noted.
Directions printed alongside the map tell you which way to turn.
Google offers services like Satellite and Terrain/ Topo View. Says Vishal Das, student and avid trekker, "The terrain or topo view allows you to see hills, depressions, and other elevation changes giving you a fair idea about which road to take and which to avoid."
Log on to www.google . com. Click on Maps and proceed.