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November 17, 2016updated 13 Jan 2017 11:42am

Explore Planet Earth in 3D – 5 amazing places to visit on Google Earth VR

Fly over mountains, walk the streets of Tokyo or walk the pitch at Wembley - explore the wolrd like never before with the new Google Earth VR app.

By Ellie Burns

Airplane tickets are no longer a necessity in order to fly around the world, with Google Earth embracing virtual reality in what may prove to be one of the best VR apps to date. Currently free on an exclusive basis for HTC Vive owners, Google Earth VR allows users to walk the streets of London or Tokyo, stand on mountains or fly over the Grand Canyon.

google earth vrUsing the Vive wand as a pointer and grabber, users can spin and grab a globe and zoom in and out as they wish.

Here, CBR counts down some of the most amazing places to go with Google Earth VR.




florence Google Earth VR


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Google has ensured that users do not get motion sickness when zooming and flying around – Google Engineering Lead, Dominik Kaeser said that this was a priority for user experience, with Google adding a feature called ‘tunnel vision’ which restricts what the user can see when flying around.


The Alps

alps Google Earth VR

With just a tap of the Vive wand you can transport from inside Florence Cathedral to a bird’s eye view of the city. Using the HTC Vive, you can walk and move through stadiums and landmarks which would otherwise be off-limits to tourists.


Hong Kong

hong kong Google Earth VR

The app comes with a set of pre-loaded coordinates in a simple menu interface – for those who may be in need of inspiration before jetting off. It is not just landmarks which are on offer – festivals like Burning Man and outer space locations can also be visited.



colosseum Google Earth VR

HTC Vive is the device of choice for Google as users need to be able to move around and, for now, the HTC is the best option. Although touch controllers for the Oculus Rift are due out soon, Google has made no plans as of yet to extend the app to other devices.


Hoover Dam

hoover dam Google Earth VR

Goodness knows how many hours you could waste travelling the world – for now, Google Earth VR is one of the best VR apps around. It also shows that Google is willing to invest big on VR projects beyond its own Daydream and Cardboard devices.

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