"A new, exciting way to tell location-based stories." (Nexto)

Turning Sightseeing into an Adventure

Nexto is a startup from Slovenia turning tourist audio guides into interactive, gamified experiences through a free app. As stated in the app’s description, their mission is "to gamify world heritage and let everyone become an Indiana Jones when they enter a museum." When visiting different historical, cultural, or natural landmarks, Nexto provides basic information on the site via the audio component, but additionally employs the user’s smartphone as the gateway to a different kind of experiential learning.

For example, Nexto brings local legends, folklore, and historical figures to life through a conversational interface and AR components that provide a window into the past. Instead of simply being told that the Berlin Wall divided families and friends, Nexto allows tourists to read the correspondence of separated lovers and see them and their city as they were 45 years ago. Quizzes, quests, riddles, and puzzles are provided throughout the tour, and AR trophies are awarded as virtual souvenirs.

Recommended Experiences Based on Interests and Location

While Nexto’s app currently only features Berlin and destinations in Slovenia, they are now partnering with tourist destinations in four other countries and plan to continue expanding across Europe. In the locations that are currently featured, different guided tours exist based on the user’s interests. For example, in the city of Piran, you can take the "Historical Path," the "Religious Path," or the "Cultural Path." Each path gives a time estimate, presents a gallery of images, and explores different landmarks and locations within its identified theme. In addition to the tours, each destination includes a map identifying all the landmarks you can potentially visit, and some feature historical or legendary stories from the region.

Nexto aims to make culture and history more accessible and exciting to travelers, especially those of younger generations. With the potential to revitalize small museums and overlooked villages, Nexto might just possess the ability to transform a family’s vacation as well as an entire city’s travel industry.

Image: via Nexto