Can I find the best pizza near my current location in Google Maps?
I know that on mobile devices there are all these cool apps that let you search "near you" for different types of restaurants, etc., and I know that Yelp has some slick capabilities, but I'm wondering if I can find local food, say a good pizza place, near me within Google Maps while on my laptop?
Pizza? Now you've done it! Now I want to get a nice hot slice of pizza to munch on while answering this question! Sneaky of you...
It turns out that Google Maps has quite a few capabilities, including both the ability to find your current location and then to search "near" it, which is darn helpful if you're stuck in a hotel room in some distant city and have no clue about the local eating options.
Sure, you could use Yelp, but I actually think Google Maps is easier, and since it offers lots of reviews too, it's just as helpful while being a bit less likely to be gamed by an overeager restauranteur seeking that little boost in first time visitors.
Go to Google Maps and you'll probably see a big map of the United States:
See that little circle button just above the zoom bar? I've highlighted it with a red box. Click on it and Google will try to figure out your current location. If it asks for permission to send the location info, grant it: you can always turn it off later.
It'll find you - at least, it does a great job of finding me just about everywhere I've tested it out - and show you the area around your current location:
Here's the trick: preface whatever search you then do with an asterisk and Google Maps will search for that "near the current location":
And the results:
If you move the map around a bit, you'll find that there are markers dropped for more places than it can display. I moved just a little bit east and found a marker for a place that I recall people saying was a good pizza choice, for example, and clicked on the marker icon:
See where it says "29 reviews"? Click on it and you'll get a lot more information - and user reviews - of the venue in question:
Now that's enough information to decide that a place is worth your business, eh? Certainly Pizzeria Basta looks nice from the photo and the reviews reinforce that it's a good choice for a nice, hot pizza pie...
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