Returns the current route matches on the page. This is most useful for creating abstractions in parent layouts to get access to their child route's data.

import { useMatches } from "react-router-dom";

function SomeComponent() {
  const matches = useMatches();
  // [match1, match2, ...]

A match has the following shape:

  // route id

  // the portion of the URL the route matched

  // the data from the loader

  // the parsed params from the URL

  // the <Route handle> with any app specific data

Pairing <Route handle> with useMatches gets very powerful since you can put whatever you want on a route handle and have access to useMatches anywhere.

useMatches only works with Data Routers, since they know the full route tree up front and can provide all of the current matches. Additionally, useMatches will not match down into any descendant route trees since the router isn't aware of the descendant routes.

The proverbial use case here is adding breadcrumbs to a parent layout that uses data from the child routes.

<Route element={<Root />}>
    element={<Messages />}
      // you can put whatever you want on a route handle
      // here we use "crumb" and return some elements,
      // this is what we'll render in the breadcrumbs
      // for this route
      crumb: () => <Link to="/message">Messages</Link>,
      element={<Thread />}
        // `crumb` is your own abstraction, we decided
        // to make this one a function so we can pass
        // the data from the loader to it so that our
        // breadcrumb is made up of dynamic content
        crumb: (data) => <span>{data.threadName}</span>,

Now we can create a Breadcrumbs component that takes advantage of our home-grown crumb abstraction with useMatches and handle.

function Breadcrumbs() {
  let matches = useMatches();
  let crumbs = matches
    // first get rid of any matches that don't have handle and crumb
    .filter((match) => Boolean(match.handle?.crumb))
    // now map them into an array of elements, passing the loader
    // data to each one
    .map((match) => match.handle.crumb(match.data));

  return (
      {crumbs.map((crumb, index) => (
        <li key={index}>{crumb}</li>

Now you can render <Breadcrumbs/> anywhere you want, probably in the root component.

Docs and examples CC 4.0