Pipestone National Monument
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While passing through the Southwest corner of Minnesota earlier this summer, an unmistakable brown and white sign reserved for national monuments popped into view: Pipestone National Monument
Located in the town of Pipestone, Pipestone National Monument …

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Bingo! Road Trip Friendly iPhone Apps

Submitted by on July 8, 2010 – 8:13 pm4 Comments

The suitcases are packed, itineraries printed, crayons sharpened…our big adventure begins bright and early tomorrow morning. Some of my “friends” have been sending incessant emails with subject lines like “Are we there yet?” and “How many more minutes?” Who needs enemies, right?

In a state of panic, I sent out a distress call to the high-tech parents at Moms with Apps, a collaborative group of family-friendly developers who share best practices on making and marketing mobile apps. Behold! A collection of road-trip friendly iPhone apps designed to engage kids, break up fights, and give parents a moment alone with their thoughts (most, if not all, are educational to boot). Officially downloaded and synched to the trusty iPhone, here they are in no particular order:

Road Trip Bingo

Road Trip Bingo

Does it feel as if your trip is never going to end? Play Road Trip Bingo and start enjoying your car or bus ride! Start up the app, shake to create a bingo card and then begin watching for road signs, vehicles, animals, scenery, and more. When you get 5 in a row, you win!

Perfect for keeping the kids occupied in the car during that long weekend drive or just day to day errand-running, Road Trip Bingo features: over 40 items to find, fun shaking action to create your own personal bingo card, and cute characters to congratulate each and every “bingo”! We’ve already been playing this at home and I can see why it’s one of the most popular travel apps on iTunes.




Confession: We’ve been enjoying Tales2Go for a couple of weeks now. Perfect for kids 3 to 11, the Tales2Go library has over 1200 stories (including best sellers like Diary of a Wimpy Kid, popular favorites such as Encyclopedia Brown, and classics along the line of Alice in Wonderland).

Read patiently by soothing voices, pack some ear buds and let your kid listen, learn, and look out the window. Tales2Go is free for 30 days and then offered on a subscription basis. Much less expensive than buying the book or paying library late fees, the app is convenient and like your own personal bookmobile (Anyone else remember those?).

Bug Builder

Bug Builder

Bug Builder

Bug Builder is a portable drawing and building game for toddler artists. Children choose a shape for their bug, decorate their shape then build their bug by tapping it. The bug shape begins to transform with each tap until it hatches and comes to life onscreen. Each new bug is completely different. Bug Builder is a whimsical and fun coloring activity that’s full of surprises!

Let me just say that my kids LOVE this app. They played it nonstop on a 4th of July power road trip. Our three-year-old and four-year-old actually worked together (!) on selecting shapes and colors and shrieking over and over at the bugs they created (With 187 screen snap images of their artwork, Bug Builder was a hit in our minivan).

Dragon Checkers

Dragon Checkers

Inspired by the artwork of the StoryBoy book app, All About Dragons, Dragon Checkers is a themed twist on the traditional board game, complete with dragon checker pieces and dragon roars. The game features interesting facts about each dragon character (eight characters to choose from), the ability to play in one-player or two-player mode, and the option to undo a wrong move.

Unfortunately, I discovered too late that Dragon Checkers requires an iPad (wah!). We do have the All About Dragons book app on our iPhone and our six-year-old read it five times in a row (you can click on different “parts” of the pictures to discover fun dragon facts and other interactive surprises).

My Little Suitcase

My Little Suitcase

My Little Suitcase

Downloading as I type this, I’m excited to have the My Little Suitcase app up my virtual sleeve. Because it’s just right out of the iTunes oven, I’ll copy and past this app description: My Little Suitcase is a kids travel application created by My Busy Kit for children 2 to 6 years of age. In My Little Suitcase children pack for their family vacation and choose where to go!

My Little Suitcase begins with a bright menu of choices for a beach trip, snow trip, camp trip, or sleepover. Once the destination is chosen, kids get to pack things like mittens, camping lanterns and beach balls. One by one, they choose items to drag into the suitcase until packing is complete. Once they arrive, they get to do what kids to best – PLAY! Kites, beach balls, snowflakes and shooting stars are all part of the My Little Suitcase adventure.

Stay tune for an update on the apps: tested, tried, and true. Leave a comment if you have a road-trip friendly iPhone app suggestion of your own. Happy trails , until we meet again!


  • [...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by doubleadventure, Bright Bunny, Lorraine Akemann and others. Lorraine Akemann said: Post turned out GREAT! RT @RoadTripsFeedMe Road-Trip Friendly iPhone Apps http://bit.ly/bQaO3T [...]

  • My name is Eyal and I’m the founder of iMagine machine.
    We have developed Faces iMake-Creative Craziness!!! in conjunction with the amazing artist Hanoch Piven.
    This unique art creation app provides blank faces and you create amusing portraits by selecting from collage materials that include foods, toys, kitchen utensils, tools, school supplies, sewing accouterments and letters.
    Pick from 20 shapes then add from more then 150 objects.
    You drag the objects onto your blank face. The results are zany looking faces that you can share via e-mail, Facebook, or by saving it to your device’s photo album.

    Faces iMake-Creative Craziness!!! is free (at the moment) and is one of the top 10 free educational games all over the world.


  • Elizabeth says:

    Another great app that was just released (I’m biased, it’s my app) is Audiobooks For Your Kids.

    Here’s the link to the iTunes store: http://itunes.apple.com/app/audiobooks-for-your-kids/id409956812?mt=8

    Audiobooks For Your Kids lets you effortlessly listen to classic children’s books. No more trying to sequence chapters on the CDs from the library. You just download the stories and you are ready to go.

    The books in our app are in the public domain, allowing you to rediscover classics like Little Women, Jungle Book and Andersen’s Fairy Tales. For the first version of this app, we picked thirty of the best narrated titles from the Librivox website. You can search based on title, author, child’s age, and genre.

    Instead of planting your kids in front of the TV or DVD player, have them listen to an audiobook: it develops not only their vocabulary, but also their imagination as well as their knowledge of the world.

  • Randa Zalman says:


    I have an iPhone app that I’d like you consider featuring on your website and social media platforms.

    The “A to Z – The Road Game” is a take on the classic family vacation, road trip pastime: the Alphabet Game. The game keeps track of the target letter for multiple players as well as offer some unique game variations for more challenging play.


    The app is compatible with iPhone, iPod touch and iPad. It is $1.99 to purchase. If you would like a promotional code for one free download, please email me at info@bestroadtripgames.com.

    This app is perfect for upcoming summer road trips.

    I would be honored if you would share this with your readers. I hope they have as much with this game as I did playing it when I was a kid.

    Randa Zalman

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