How to find points of interest between two destinations?
August 16, 2011 12:01 PM   Subscribe

What is the best way online to find multiple points of interest en route between point A and point B?

I use google maps but don't see any way to look something like a bookstore on the way to my home (15 miles away). I can obviously search nearby point a or point b but is there a quick and efficient website, app or add-on that can accomplish this?

Obviously, I can add multiple addresses within that route, but that is time consuming and defeats my purpose. Just wondering if I've missed something in google maps because it seems like a really obviously feature we all could use.
posted by JJkiss to Travel & Transportation (5 answers total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
I just typed bookstores and my zip code into google maps and it gave me a map of all the bookstores in the area. Seems like if you do the same with one endpoint of your commute it'll be easy enough to eyeball which bookstores are not out of your way.
posted by COD at 12:21 PM on August 16, 2011

Response by poster: I'm looking for all the bookstores near my route... not just point a or b. This is especially useful for long drives.
posted by JJkiss at 12:26 PM on August 16, 2011

I think that Google Maps does this, but you have to do it in a specific way:

1. Type in the start and destination into the directions boxes. Click "Get Directions".
2. In the search box, put in your search terms and click the search button. This should show you all of the bookstores along your route. If it doesn't ensure that the directions you just searched for are checked on the drop-down box below your map type.
posted by urbanlenny at 12:35 PM on August 16, 2011

Best answer: Here's an example between Toronto and Montréal. You'll have to do some quality control, but it should at least give you a starting point.
posted by urbanlenny at 12:36 PM on August 16, 2011

Various GPS applications, like Tomtom, can tell you the points of interest along your route - and you can filter to show only certain categories. However I am not sure they are well set up for giving you this information at the planning stage. There are also a number of iPhone/android apps that will give you information about what is worth seeing around you right now.

But from your description it sounds like what you would like is something like a route-based front end for a service like Tripadvisor. Something which would let you answer the question "I am going from A to B - what sites are there on the way that I should not miss (given my particular interests)?". Bonus points if the service was able to work out that you might be passing a great lunch spot around midday, a wonderful hotel towards the end of a day or a fascinating village market on the day when it happens to take place. I am not aware that such a service exists. Perhaps it could be built as a Google mashup - but I think that the data on where you are likely to be when needs to be worked out and made use of for the system to be working at its best.
posted by rongorongo at 11:58 PM on August 16, 2011

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