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Navigate your way without a navigation system

October 11, 2011

Clouds over the city

Clouds over the city

Smart phones and tablets these days have in-built navigation systems and maps that will lead you anywhere from your current location. And some of them rely on data networks. There are cars with navigation systems, but they are expensive. What if you find yourself with low battery in your devices or no internet connection and you have to reach some place?

The author of The Natural Navigator, one of the world’s only books on natural navigation, gives tips on finding your way around naturally and never to get lost, preferably in a city.

It involves paying attention to cues that normally point in specific directions. For example, Christian churches are normally aligned west-east, with the main altar at the eastern end to face the sunrise. Also, gravestones are aligned west-east.


Similarly, satellite dishes tend to point toward the south, with some variation depending on your location. Here in Los Angeles, they point to the southeast.

If you just want to find your way to public transportation during rush hour, just follow the people. And to orient yourself so you know what direction you’re headed when you exit a subway stop, just pay attention to the direction the clouds are moving before you head underground and use that to orient yourself when you reach your destination.

Send your tips and tricks in comments on how you would find your way naturally.

Read more at: Six ways to never get lost in a city again – BBC News