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Navigate by Track

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This article was last updated in June 2024


The Navigation by track (GPX) option allows you to follow a predefined route or track on a map. It can be particularly useful for outdoor activities such as hiking, cycling, or off-road driving, where having a planned route improves safety and efficiency. If you are traveling in an organized group, this feature helps you and each member of the group have the same route information as the others.

The Navigation by track option can also be used in the everyday life. You can use a previously recorded track or share it with your family or friends instead of explaining the route to them. You can also use the routes on the OsmAnd map for navigation. How to highlight them on the map and what their colors mean is described in the Routes section of the Vector maps article.

Navigation by track screen Android

Select track to navigate​

Before using the Navigation by track option you need to create or import a GPX file, a common format used to store route data.
A GPX file usually contains a sequence of points (waypoints) that define a route. It can be recorded or created using various tools (mostly apps and online services). You can read more about GPX file format used by OsmAnd in the Trip recording plugin article.

Create and import GPX​

In the OsmAnd application, you can create a GPX file using tools such as:

Import GPX files:

  • You can learn how to import GPX files to OsmAnd in the My data / Tracks article.
  • Tracks from the OsmAnd Web portal can be downloaded on your device using OsmAnd Cloud.
  • You can find many tracks without categories in OpenStreetMap and download them - Public GPS Traces.

Start GPX navigation​

Select track to navigate Android 1 Select track to navigate Android 2

If a track has been created or imported into OsmAnd, it can be found in the track list in My places. You can select the required file from the available tracks, highlight it on the map, and then use it for navigation.

Navigation on a track can be started using the quick action button in the Track context menu (opened by selecting one of the highlighted tracks on the map or by tapping a track file in the My Places section of the Main menu) or from the navigation menu, which is opened by tapping:

Choose segments​

Segments Android

If a track consists of more than one track, when importing you can choose whether to save it in a single file or in multiple files. For navigation, if the selected track consists of multiple segments or tracks, you can select either a specific segment or the entire gpx track file.

Custom points​

Overview track context menu Android

Start / Finish point.
You can specify the start and finish point for a route other than the points used in the GPX file. In the Follow track menu, you can choose whether you want to navigate from your current location to the start point or to the nearest point on the GPX track.
Also, you can choose Navigation type that will be used when moving on and along the track.

Adding waypoints.
You can add a waypoint to any imported or created GPX track from the My Places β†’ Track List collection.

  1. Using the My Places menu:
    • Go to the My Places β†’ Tracks menu.
    • Tap the track in the list that you are interested in.
    • In the opened context menu, select Points tab β†’ bottom section Action β†’ Add Waypoint.
    • Enter the required information to the Waypoint and save.
  2. Visible tracks:
    • Tracks must first be added to the Visible on map folder (Show on map feature) in the Tracks tab.
    • Tap the selected track on the map, than Points tab β†’ bottom section Action β†’ Add Waypoint.
  3. Long-tap the map:
    • Long-tap to select a location on the map and tap Add track waypoint from the Map context menu.
    • Select the track to which you want to add a waypoint, enter the required information and save.

Intermediate destinations.
When preparing or navigating a GPX track, you cannot add locations you plan to pass through before reaching the destination (details here) between the start and finish points specified in the track. You can use the + button to add only a new destination point, then part of your route will follow the track, if possible in the recalculation, and the rest will go to the specified point.

Follow track menu​

Navigation by track screen Android

  • πŸ–‰ button near track name and info - opens it in a Plan route tool.
  • πŸ—€ Β Select another track - select another GPX file for navigation.
  • Β Reverse track direction - if enabled, the direction of movement along the track will be reversed.
  • Β Point of the track to navigate (or Navigate to in iOS) - you can choose whether you will be directed to the Start of the track or Nearest point of the track.
  • Β Navigation type - you can choose weither you will be guided to the track using Straight line or usng routing type from current profile.

Attach to roads​

Attach to the roads 1 Attach to the roads 2

When your track selected as a destination point, you can find the Attach to the roads option in the Navigation menu (only in the Android version of the app) or in the Follow track menu (both Android and iOS versions). If you tap this option, the Plan a route tool will open and OsmAnd will match each point on the track to the nearest allowed road on the map according to the chosen profile and threshold distance.

  • Threshold distance (default is 50 meters) refers to the maximum distance between a point on a GPS track and the nearest point on a road in order to attach the track to the road.
  • When you change the profile, OsmAnd automatically reattaches your track to the allowed for this profile roads. If your track consists of a big amount of points, attaching to the roads may take a long time. On the picture above, you can see the highlighted with orange status line, which indicates the progress. After the procedure of attaching to the roads is finished, the button Apply is active, and the track can be used for navigation.

After attaching your track to the roads in Route details section, you will find more precise information about your route and Voice instructions will be more detailed.


Navigation by GPX track contains the same voice instructions as route navigation. However, some turns or traffic circles may not be interpreted correctly because there is no information about road intersections in GPX, except for GPX files created by OsmAnd. To eliminate these problems, you should use the Attach to roads feature.

During navigation, you can use various options such as zooming in or out, panning the map, or switching to a different map style. If you deviate from the track, OsmAnd will automatically recalculate the route to bring you back on track. You can also adjust the speed of the track and set audible alerts for approaching points or deviations from the route.