Route Rendering Methods in React Router: A Comprehensive Guide

A powerful library for controlling navigation and routing in React apps is the React Router. Its ability to render components based on particular routes is one of its key characteristics. React Router provides a variety of route rendering techniques, each of which serves a different use case. We will examine the various route rendering techniques offered by React Router in this blog and learn when and how to apply them.

Prerequisites

Before we dive into route rendering methods, make sure you have a basic understanding of React and have already set up React Router in your project.

  1. Route Component Rendering

The most common method of rendering components with React Router is using the `<Route>` component. This method allows you to associate a component with a specific route using the ‘path’ prop. When the route matches the specified ‘path’, React Router renders the associated component.

Example:

Here’s an example of how to use the`<Route>` component

import React from 'react'; import { BrowserRouter as Router, Route } from 'react-router-dom'; import Home from './pages/Home'; import About from './pages/About'; const AppRouter = () => { return ( <Router> <Route exact path="/" component={Home} /> <Route path="/about" component={About} /> </Router> ); }; export default AppRouter;
Code language: JavaScript (javascript)

In this example, the `Home` component will be rendered when the route matches the root ‘/’, and the `/About` component will be rendered when the route matches ‘/about’.

2. Route Rendering with the ‘render’ Prop

The `<Route>` component also provides a `render` prop, which allows you to render an inline component instead of passing a reference to an existing component. This is useful when you need to pass additional props or perform some logic before rendering the component.

Example:

Here’s an example of using the `render` prop:

import React from 'react'; import { BrowserRouter as Router, Route, Redirect } from 'react-router-dom'; const AppRouter = () => { const isLoggedIn = true; return ( <Router> <Route exact path="/dashboard" render={() => (isLoggedIn ? <Dashboard /> : <Redirect to="/login" />)} /> {/* Other routes... */} </Router> ); }; export default AppRouter;
Code language: JavaScript (javascript)

In this example, we conditionally render the `Dashboard` component based on whether the user is logged in or not. If the user is not logged in, we redirect them to the login page.

3. Route Rendering with the `Children` Prop

The `<Route>` component also has a `children` prop, which works similarly to the `render` prop, but it gets rendered regardless of whether the current location matches the route.

import React from 'react'; import { BrowserRouter as Router, Route } from 'react-router-dom'; const AppRouter = () => { return ( <Router> <Route path="/contact" children={({ match }) => ( <div className={match ? 'active' : ''}>Contact Us</div> )} /> {/* Other routes... */} </Router> ); }; export default AppRouter;
Code language: JavaScript (javascript)

In this example, the `<div>` with the text “Contact Us” will be rendered for any route that starts with ‘/contact’, regardless of whether it’s an exact match.

4. Route Rendering with the `component` Prop and Customs Props

Sometimes, you might want to render a component and pass additional custom props to it. In such cases, using the `component` prop along with the `render` prop can be beneficial.

import React from 'react'; import { BrowserRouter as Router, Route } from 'react-router-dom'; const AppRouter = () => { const additionalProp = 'Hello, from custom prop!'; return ( <Router> <Route path="/custom" render={(props) => <CustomComponent {...props} customProp={additionalProp} />} /> {/* Other routes... */} </Router> ); }; export default AppRouter;
Code language: JavaScript (javascript)

Here, the `CustomComponent` is rendered for the ‘/custom’ route, and we pass an additional custom prop called `customProp` to it.

Conclusion

Multiple route rendering techniques are offered by React Router, each of which is flexible and suited to a particular use case. The navigation and user experience of your React applications can be considerably improved by being aware of these techniques and understanding when to apply them. React Router has you covered whether you need to render components conditionally, pass custom props, or render components regardless of the route match.

Try out these route rendering techniques in your projects, and for more in-depth explanations and advanced capabilities, consult the official React Router documentation. Happy navigating!

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