Geotagging Photos using a Garmin Zumo

Geotagging Photos using a Garmin Zumo

See also: GPS & Sat Nav Resources

See also: Creating GPS encoded photographs for free

Add geographical locations (identification metadata) to your photographs using your Garmin Zumo satnav
By Ian Mason (

Why would you want to?…how do you do it?

Well the why is easy for example after a couple of weeks touring Europe you get home with hundreds of photographs and you can’t remember where you took them!

If a photo has been geotagged, when viewing your images using iPhoto on a Mac, Google Picasa, similar software for Windows PCs or on online photo hosting services such as or, you will be able to see exactly where you took the pictures in Google Maps.

The How is fairly simple if you have a Garmin Zumo or similar GPS SatNav system that can store tracks.

You will need Garmin’s Basecamp software
…it’s a free download from Garmin and there is a Windows and Mac version.

I would have thought it should be possible to use Garmin’s MapSource sofdtware but it doesn’t seem to work for me. (contact AndyW if anyone knows how;-)

UPDATE: Alternative to using Basecamp – since I wrote this GPS article I have found a better way to do it. I’m using GPSPhotoLinker which will bulk Geotag photos but only on a Mac I’m afraid. GPSPhotoLinker ‘how to’ (PDF doc)
For Windows PCs check out COPIKS PhotoMapper

Using Basecamp
Upload the tracks from your GPS to Basecamp (toolbar – top left hand corner ‘receive from GPS’) and then under ‘my collection’ highlight the appropriate tracks.

Now Right Click and choose ‘Match Tracks to Photos’

In the window that opens browse for the location of the photographs you want to Geotag and tick ‘Geotag photos’. Assuming the Time on your Camera and the Time on your computer are the same just click OK. If the time imprinted in the pictures EXIF data is different you can use the ‘Time shift’ function and re-geotag the pictures.

You do not need the time and date on the picture itself it is stored automatically within the image file data (see the EXIF data link above for an explanation;-)

To view any photo on the map using Google Picasa just click on the Geo-tag symbol, Picasa tool bar bottom right hand side of the Picasa window.

I find it helps to check everything is as it should be by looking at one photo which you know the exact location of where it was taken. If it’s close to but not exactly where it should be on the map, maybe within a hundred yards or so, you can adjust the time shift, as mentioned above, as appropriate.