Virtual Tourism

Virtual tourism, google maps mashup, google video

Google Maps Mania: A Goolish Google Maps Halloween!

Google Maps Mania has picked up on Google's use of a witch as a cursor in Google Map's streetview (see post below). They also have a good list of ghoulish Google Maps Mashups:

Mapping Dark and macabre locations around the world!
MovieLandMarks: Halloween the Movie
MovieLandMarks: Rocky Horror Picture Show
Platial.com: Map of Unusual Deaths
Platial: Maps tagged with "Halloween"
Satellite SightSeer: Burg Frankenstein
Google Book Search: Scary Stories

To be fair to Google Maps Mania I haven't copied the links - so to visit these maps view the original post:

Google Maps Mania: A Goolish Google Maps Halloween!

The London Eye

It was a gorgeous Autumnal day today in London. I was going to shoot a video of The Monument, erected to mark those who died in the great fire of London. Unfortunately it was completely covered with scaffolding as it is currently undergoing maintenance.

So I walked along the Thames from London Bridge to Westminster Bridge where I shot this video of the London Eye instead. I would have taken a ride on the Eye but as always the queues were far too long.



See the London Eye on Google Maps

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The Haunted Google Map

streetview witch
Google Maps has been possessed by evil spirits. If you go to any of the North American cities that now has streetview on Google Maps the little man that users use to move around on the map has now become a witch.

Check it out here.

Or check out our Streetview Gallery

Les Invalides, Paris

Les Invalides
Les Invalides in Paris, France consists of a complex of buildings in the 7th arrondissement containing museums and monuments, all relating to the military history of France, as well as a hospital and a retirement home for war veterans, the building's original purpose. It is also the burial site for some of France's war heroes.

Louis XIV initiated the project by an order dated November 24, 1670, as a home and hospital for aged and unwell soldiers: the name is a shortened form of hôpital des invalides, the hospital for invalids. The architect of Les Invalides was Libéral Bruant. The selected site was suburban in the seventeenth century. By the time the enlarged project was completed in 1676, the river front measured 196 metres and the complex had fifteen courtyards, the largest being the cour d'honneur ("court of honour") for military parades.

View a video of Les Invalides on Google Maps

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Humble Pie

We have to apologise to Internet Explorer users who have been unable to play the Locate the Country game and the Capital of ...? game. A missing comma in the javascript of both games annoyed IE so much it refused to let anyone play. Firefox as always was more forgiving and allowed users of that browser to play.

The offending comma has now been inserted and you can play the game on all browsers.

Google Game Map

As well as adding a number of eastern European countries to the Locate the Country game we have created a new game called Capital of ...?.

The new game works on the same principle as the first only this time you are given a capital city and you have to click on the correct country.

Go play.

Guess the Country Game

In a shameless act of plagiarism we have stolen Pamela Fox's idea of a Guess the States game. Only in our version you have to guess the European country. The game is very much a work in progress and at the moment is a little light on countries to guess but we will be adding more tomorrow. I have now added a number of Eastern European countries which makes the game a little more challenging. At least it does for me.

Check it out here or try Pam's original game on the Official Google Maps API Blog

Official Google Maps API Blog: Clickable Polys = Old School Image Maps + Educational Games?

Worldwide Videos Update

The Royal Albert Hall
We have added four videos to the Worldwide Videos layer for Google Earth 4.2 today. The videos are:

The Tate Modern, London
The Royal Albert Hall, London
The Imperial War Museum
The Raffles Hotel, Singapore

Download the Worldwide Videos layer

The British Museum, London



The Great Court in the centre of The British Museum was opened in 2000. The court has a tessellated glass roof, designed by Foster and Partners, which covers the entire court and surrounds the original circular British Museum Reading Room in the centre.

It is the largest covered square in Europe. The glass and steel roof is made up of 1,656 pairs of glass windowpanes; each a unique shape because of the undulating nature of the roof.

Watch the video of The British Museum on Google Maps

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Google Earth Podcast Map

The Google Maps API Blog had a post today about embedding Flash in Google Earth 4.2. We have of course been embedding Flash in our Video Map layer for Google Earth but the post reminded me of a podcast map we created a long time ago for Google Maps. I seem to have deleted all copies of that map but I did think I'd have a go at seeing if I could create a Google Earth layer of playable podcasts, using a Flash player.

Here is the resulting Podcast layer for Google Earth. At the moment there are only six podcasts on it. I think it could be an area worth developing, especially if I can find podcasts that actually reflect the music of their location.

Both the Video Map layer and the Podcast layer require Google Earth 4.2. If you don't have the latest version of Google Earth you can download it by clicking on the Google Pack advert at the bottom of the column on the left.

Official Google Maps API Blog: Make your KML Flash-y!

California Fires

Reuters have created this animated map of the California fires:



Check the post below for our video map of the fires (I'll be adding more videos to the map later today).

Where in the world?

Here is the updated kml that has placemarks for all the answers to Google's 'Where in the world?' quiz.

I have added placemarks of some of the other areas in Google Earth that have received image updates. For example, you can now see the house I grew up in and my boat mooring in the UK (although I am very disappointed because Google flew over on one of the very few days I had taken the boat out, so it doesn't appear).

Google LatLong: Southern California fire imagery

Google have provided an updated image overlay for Google Earth of the areas of California that have been suffering from fires. The imagery is from October the 22nd and you can download the overlay here.

Videos of the fires can be seen in the embedded map below. Just click on the red tags.



Google LatLong: Southern California fire imagery

Where in the World is ... Answers

The Google LatLong blog has provided the answers to the Where in the World Quiz. I have to hold my hand up and admit I got one wrong. I will update the kml of the updated imagery soon.

For now here are the correct answers:

1) U.S. Route 91 turns into a much more famous stretch of road when it crosses into this town.
-- Las Vegas (The Las Vegas Strip)

2) Every year, this city plays host to the U.K.'s largest outdoor (temporary) ice rink.
-- Leeds, England (The Ice Cube)

3) Paradise: In this town you can surf or visit the world's most delicious book store, located in
an old Twinkie factory (with plenty of aging filling still in the pipes).
-- Cleveland (Anyone who watches "Anthony Bourdain: No Reservations" should have gotten that one right!)

4) The original name of this city was Terminus.
-- Atlanta, Georgia

5) The world's northernmost opera house is located in this town.
-- Umeå, Sweden

6) This major U.S. city is actually north of Canada.
-- Detroit, Michigan

7) A popular children's game show that promoted geographic knowledge was produced out of
this city.
-- Pittsburgh (Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego?)

8) Don't let the name fool you -- this lake actually fills a 4,000ft deep caldera.
-- Crater Lake, Oregon

9) You can tour the Royal Navy's first iron-hulled, armor-plated warship in this town.
-- Portsmouth, England (HMS Warrior)

10) The historic fort in this city was restored based on an 1847 map published in Darmstadt,
Germany.
-- Sacramento (Sutter's Fort)

11) As Halloween approaches, one might be interested in viewing the 'Ghost Capital of Britain.'
-- Derby, England

12) Now part of Germany, this city was once the capital of the Hanseatic League.
-- Luebeck, Germany

13) President Lincoln attended the dedication ceremony of the Soldier's National Cemetery in
this town.
-- Gettysburg, PA (President Lincoln gave the Gettysburg Address at this dedication ceremony.)

Google LatLong: Where in the world is ... (bonus edition -- Answers)

Google Earth Update

Hot on the heels of Google Earth's last image update, which was only a few weeks ago, comes yet another update.

As usual Google are teasing us with clues as to the parts of the world that have been updated. Here are the clues:

1) U.S. Route 91 turns into a much more famous stretch of road when it crosses into this town.
2) Every year, this city plays host to the U.K.'s largest outdoor (temporary) ice rink. - Answer: Leeds
3) Paradise: In this town you can surf or visit the world's most delicious book store, located in an old Twinkie factory (with plenty of aging filling still in the pipes). - Answer: Cleveland
4) The original name of this city was Terminus. - Answer: Atlanta, Georgia
5) The world's northernmost opera house is located in this town. - Answer: Tromsø, Norway more likely to be Reykjavik, Iceland
6) This major U.S. city is actually north of Canada.
7) A popular children's game show that promoted geographic knowledge was produced out of this city.
8) Don't let the name fool you -- this lake actually fills a 4,000ft deep caldera. - Answer: Crater Lake
9) You can tour the Royal Navy's first iron-hulled, armour-plated warship in this town. - Answer: Portsmouth, UK
10) The historic fort in this city was restored based on an 1847 map published in Darmstadt, Germany. - Answer: Sutter's Fort, Sacremento
11) As Halloween approaches, one might be interested in viewing the 'Ghost Capital of Britain.' - Answer: Derby, UK
12) Now part of Germany, this city was once the capital of the Hanseatic League. - Answer: Lubeck, Germany
13) President Lincoln attended the dedication ceremony of the Soldier's National Cemetery in this town. - Answer: Gettysburg

Click here to view the answers so far on Google Earth

Google LatLong: Where in the world is ... (bonus edition)

Château de Fontainebleau

Château de Fontainebleau
The Royal Château of Fontainebleau (in the Seine-et-Marne département) is one of the largest French royal châteaux. The château as it is today is the work of many French monarchs, building on a structure of Francis I. The building is ranged round a series of courts. The city of Fontainebleau has grown up around the remainder of the Forest of Fontainebleau, a former royal hunting park.

View a video of Château de Fontainebleau on Google Maps

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California Fire Maps

The Google LatLong blog has highlighted links to two maps tracking the fires raging in Southern California:

The LA Times map

&

KPBS Fire Map

Google LatLong: San Diego Fire Map

Wilanow Palace, Warsaw

Wilanow Palace in the snow
Wilanów Palace at Wilanów in Warsaw is, together with its park and other buildings, one of the most precious monuments of Polish national culture. It survived the time of partitions and wars and preserved its authentic historical qualities. It was built for the Polish king Jan III Sobieski in the last quarter of 17th century and later was enlarged by other owners.

It represents the characteristical type of baroque suburban residence entre cour et jardin (between the court and garden). Its architecture is very original – it is a merger of European art with Old-Polish building tradition and its elevation and palace interiors that, using antique symbols, glorifies the Sobieski family, especially military triumphs of the king.

View a video of Wilanow Palace on Google Maps

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Streetview Gallery

We have categorised the streetviews in the Streetview Gallery into 'vehicles', 'art', 'people' and 'other'. We think it helps in exploring the different streetviews on offer.

To add the Streetview Gallery to your Facebook account click here.

Imperial War Museum, London

Imperial War Museum
The Imperial War Museum is a museum in London featuring military vehicles, weapons, war memorabilia, an extensive library open to the public Monday to Saturday, a photographic archive, and an art collection of 20th century and later conflicts, especially those involving Britain, and the British Empire.

The Imperial War Museum houses a large collection of oral recordings of interviews with people who were affected by war in the 20th Century. The sound archive has been used for a series of radio programmes and books, called Forgotten Voices, about war in the 20th century, including Forgotten Voices of the Great War and Forgotten Voices of the Holocaust.

View a video of the Imperial War Museum in Google Maps

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Doris Salcedo's Shibboleth

Doris Salcedo is the latest artist to feature in The Tate Modern's huge Turbine Hall. Her artwork Shibboleth is a huge crack in the concrete floor and stretches the length of the hall.

According to The Tate, "in breaking open the floor of the museum, Salcedo is exposing a fracture in modernity itself. Her work encourages us to confront uncomfortable truths about our history and about ourselves with absolute candidness, and without self-deception."

I have to disagree. On my visit today no-one seemed uncomfortable with the piece, in fact it seemed to bring people nothing but joy.

See for yourself,

Piazza Navona, Rome

The Fountain of the Four Rivers
The Piazza Navona follows the plan of an ancient Roman circus, the 1st century Stadium of Domitian, where the Romans came to watch the agones ("games"): It was known as 'Circus Agonalis' (competition arena). It is believed that over time the name changed to 'in agone' to 'navone' and eventually to 'navona'.

Defined as a square in the last years of 15th century, when the city market was transferred here from the Campidoglio, Piazza Navona is now the pride of Baroque Rome. It has sculptural and architectural creations: by Gian Lorenzo Bernini, the famous Fontana dei Quattro Fiumi (Fountain of the Four Rivers, 1651) in the center; by Francesco Borromini and Girolamo Rainaldi, the church of Sant Agnese in Agone; and by Pietro da Cortona, who painted the gallery in the Pamphilj palace.

View a video of the Piazza Navona on Google Maps

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Google Maps Satellite Imagery Update

The Google Earth satellite imagery update from earlier this month has now been added to Google Maps. Some of the places now in higher definition are:

Inca ruins in Pisac
Becan, Mexico
Lagos in Niigeria
Trinity Site, White Sands Missile Range - New Mexico

Google Map Profiles

Google have today announced that users can now create their own Google Maps profile. To create your own profile simply sign in to Google Maps and click on the My Profile link in the upper right hand corner. Your profile will then be available in any 'My Maps' you have created.

If someone likes one of your 'My Maps' they will now be able to view your profile and find other maps that you have created.

Here is the now obligatory Google video introducing this new feature.



Google LatLong: Put yourself on the map

St James Park, London

St James Park covered in snow
St James's Park is the oldest of the Royal Parks of London. It stretches from Buckingham Palace at one end to Horse Guards Parade at the other. The park has a small lake, St James's Park Lake, with two islands, Duck Island (named for the lake's collection of waterfowl), and West Island.

A bridge across the lake affords a westward view of Buckingham Palace framed by trees and fountains, and a view of the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, similarly framed, to the east.

View a video of St James Park on Google Maps

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Amish Streetview

horse drawn buggy
This streetview of the Amish rush hour in Pennsylvania is today's addition to the Streetview Gallery.

A new streetview is added every day so check back regularly.

Blog Action Day

It is probably unfair to look at the ecological record of a developing country when the developed world is responsible for consuming 90% of the world's resources. However as part of the global Blog Action Day we thought we would highlight the cause of Mozambique's tropical hardwood forests.

One of the super close up satellite images recently made available on Google Maps is this beautiful coconut grove that provides shade for a small coastal village in Mozambique,




The beauty of this image provides a suitable contrast to the ugliness being left behind by the illegal logging in the country. Businesses, members of the Government and forest services are colluding to strip precious tropical hardwoods from the slow-growing forests at a rate that will exhaust the resource in 5-10 years. The timber is exported as unprocessed logs, undermining local industry, and transferring all its potential benefits from one of the poorest countries in the world to the richer countries

The impact on the economy is great, in terms of loss of employment, loss of revenues, abuse of community rights and degradation of a valuable resource.

Bloggers Unite - Blog Action Day

Safari Map Update

We have added a few more super close up satellite images to the Safari Map.

Safari Map

Following Google's release of some super close-up satellite imagery in Google Maps we have created a Safari Map that features some of the more interesting images.

Safari Map

Zoom in on Google Maps

Google has announced an update today of the satellite images in Google Maps. Google Maps now has many of the very detailed zooms that are available in Google Earth.


Here are some examples of Google's super close ups,

Camels at a well

roaming buffalo

flaming flamingoes

happy hippos

antelope?

basking seal

oryx

gazelle

Victoria Falls

floating huts

two men at a well looking up at the camera

European caravanners on holiday in Africa


cattle rancher staring up at camera


The close-ups are all available in Google Earth in the National Geographic layer under Africa Megaflyover.

Here are all the super close-ups in Madagascar. To view these in Google Maps - right click on the link and choose 'copy link location', then paste into the search bar in Google Maps. Madagascar

Google LatLong: Zoom in on Google Maps

YouTube in Google Earth - Now why didn't we think of that?

Since the release of Google Earth 4.2 it has been possible to watch videos from within Google Earth. You can view our 300 hand picked YouTube videos by downloading the Worldwide Videos KML.

Google have caught up and added a YouTube layer to Google Earth. Now any videos that have been geo-tagged in YouTube can be accessed from Google Earth. This of course means that many of the videos aren't videos of the location but were just shot there. For example a video in Google Earth that is placed on the Millennium Dome (see post below) could be a clip of a gig that was held there rather than a video of the dome. Therefore if you are looking of a video of a specific place it is probably best to use our Worldwide Videos KML in conjunction with the new YouTube layer.

Google LatLong: Now Playing: YouTube videos in Google Earth

Millennium Dome, London

The Millenium Dome from across the Thames, lit up at night.
The Millennium Dome, often simply referred to as The Dome, is the original name of a large dome-shaped building, originally used to house a major exhibition celebrating the beginning of the third millennium. The dome structure, is the largest domed structure in the world. Externally it appears as a large white marquee with 100 m-high yellow support towers, one for each month of the year, or each hour of the clock face, representing the role played by Greenwich Mean Time.

The architect of The Dome was Richard Rogers. The entire roof structure weighs less than the air contained within the building. Although referred to as a dome it is not strictly one as it is not self-supporting, but is a mast-supported, dome-shaped cable network.

View a video of the Millennium Dome on Google Maps

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More Street Views

Wrigley Field, Chicago

Crashed art?, Chicago

Oprah Winfrey Studio

Crown Fountain, Chicago

Field Museum of Natural History

More Street View Cities to Explore

Google today announced the addition of six new cities to Google Maps Streetview. The cities are Chicago, Pittsburgh, Philadelphia, Phoenix, Portland and Tucson. The images in Phoenix, Tucson and parts of Chicago are all in high resolution.

I think they may also have covered Springfield. At least that's what this streetview of a Kwik-E-Mart suggests.

Here are some of our early finds. We will of course be adding some of these streetviews to our Streetview Gallery.

Sears Tower

Buckingham Fountain, Chicago & a video of the fountain.

Itty bitty shorts, Chicago

Chicago Board of Trade Building

Museum of Science and Industry, Chicago

Who invited Google to the wedding?

Arizona State Capitol

Too lazy to walk, Chicago

Hitting the trail in Tucsan, Arizona

Small Train at Reid Park Zoo, Tucson

Betsy Ross House (said to have sewn the first American flag ), Philidelphia

Independence Hall, Phildelphia - Streetview & video

Duquesne Incline, Pittsburgh - Streetview and video.

Cathedral of Learning, Pittsburgh

Portland Arial tram in action

Google LatLong: More Street View cities to explore

Mount Vesuvius, Italy

Mount Vesuvius
Mount Vesuvius (Italian: Monte Vesuvio, Latin: Mons Vesuvius) is a volcano east of Naples, Italy. It is the only volcano on the European mainland to have erupted within the last hundred years, although it is not currently erupting. The only other two such volcanoes in Italy (Etna and Stromboli) are located on islands.

Mount Vesuvius was regarded by the Greeks and Romans as being sacred to the hero and demigod Heracles/Hercules, and the town of Herculaneum, built at its base, was named after him.

Related Pages: Pompeii, Herculaneum

View a video of Mount Vesuvius on Google Maps

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Animal Streaming Webcam Gadget

The streaming animal webcam gadget has proved very popular. We have today removed a couple of dead links and added some new animal webcams. You can now view a webcam of some flamingos and a webcam of an African Water Hole.



Be patient as some of the webcams take a while to load. To add the streaming animal webcams gadget to your iGoogle page just click on the +Google button.

George Square, Glasgow

George Square, Glasgow
George Square is the central square in the Scottish city of Glasgow. Today the east side of the square is dominated by the ornate Glasgow City Chambers, headquarters of Glasgow City Council, which opened in 1888.

On the South side are a number of buildings, including the former General Post Office, built in 1878 and currently under redevelopment, a Chicago-style office building, dating from 1924 and there is also the city's main Tourist Information Centre. The North side consists of Queen Street Station, the North British Railway Hotel (now the Millennium Hotel), which date from the 1840s, and the offices of Ernst & Young, which date from the 1970s.

View a video of George Square on Google Maps

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Red Rocks Amphitheatre

Red Rocks Amphitheatre
Red Rocks Amphitheatre is a rock structure in Red Rocks Park near Morrison, Colorado (west of Denver), where concerts are given in the open air amphitheatre. There is a large, tilted, disc-shaped rock behind the stage, a huge vertical rock angled outwards from stage right, several large boulders angled outwards from stage left and seating area for up to 9,450 people in between.

The amphitheatre is owned and operated by the City and County of Denver, Colorado. It was created by the workers of the Civilian Conservation Corps under the New Deal.

View videos of Red Rocks Amphitheatre on Google Maps

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Google Hell

I'm not sure if this is just a 'wrong' side of the Atlantic thing but I find the official videos from Google incredibly weird. Check out the latest Google Maps tour,



Every time I've watched this I have had to lie down for half an hour. Every time I've got up again I've convinced myself I'd imagined it and then watched it again. For the last four hours I have found myself in this eternal recurrence. I can't escape.

We've had Google Earth, Google Mars and Google Moon - Now We Have Google Hell.

You should check it out! (thumbs up, fake grin, cut to logo)

"OK but what about the burritos?"

Google LatLong: Now Playing: The Google Maps Video Tour

Free Burma Campaign

Free Burma!
At least 1,000 people have been arrested in Yangon in Burma alone, the majority of them monks.

There has been a flood of reports of alleged brutal killings, disappearances and arrests as the military in Myanmar stamped out the anti-government protests of the last week.

www.free-burma.org

The Shwedagon Pagoda at 98 metres in height dominates the city of Yangon and is the most sacred Buddhist pagoda for the Burmese. On September 24, 20,000 monks and nuns led 30,000 people in a peaceful anti-government march from the golden Shwedagon Pagoda in Yangon, past the offices of the opposition National League for Democracy (NLD) party.

On September 25, 2,000 people defied threats from Burma's junta and marched to Shwedagon Pagoda amid army trucks and warning of Brigadier-General Thura Myint Maung not to violate Buddhist "rules and regulations." The following morning, various prominent protesters were arrested and troops barricaded Shwedagon Pagoda and attacked the 700 people within.

View a video of the Shwedagon Pagoda on Google Maps

The Tate Modern, London

A picture of the Tate from the Millenium Bridge
I spent this afternoon shooting this video of the Tate Modern. When I arrived at the gallery I was a little disappointed because the huge turbine hall was closed.

The turbine hall, which once housed the electricity generators of the old power station (now the Tate Modern Art Gallery), is five storeys tall with 3,400 square metres of floorspace and is used to display specially-commissioned work by contemporary artists. I always find myself more impressed with the turbine hall than with any of the art on display in the gallery.

However my disappointment at the temporary closure of the turbine hall was alleviated by the reoccurrence of Louis Bourgeois' giant spider. The spider was part of the first exhibit in the turbine hall when the Tate Modern first opened. It is now on display in front of the building. If anything this a better space for this incredible sculpture.

You probably won't be suprised to find that Bourgeois' sculpture features heavily in the video.

View a video of The Tate Modern on Google Maps

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Google Earth Update

Google Earth has today updated some of its satellite imagery. As normal Google have announced a number of clues as to which areas have been updated.

Here is a Google Earth file with the answers to the questions below plotted.

1) I don't mean to "flatter," but this remote Northwestern cape is very beautiful.
Cape Flattery (Washington)

2) You can now explore the ruins of this ancient Mayan city, first discovered in 1934.
Becán, Yucatan

3) This small Peruvian village attracts many tourists each year for the Incan ruins atop nearby hills.
Pisac, Peru

4) This city claims to be the southernmost city in the world, with approximately 64,000 residents.
Ushuaia, Argentina

5) Home of the Russian Pacific Fleet, this city is also Russia's largest Pacific coast harbor.
Vladivostok

6) Named after Saint Irene, though sometimes referred to as Thera, this island is a popular Greek tourist destination.
Santorini

7) The Trojan horse from the 2004 movie Troy is visible in this city.
Canakkale, Turkey

8) This city is the second most populated metropolitan area in Africa, second to Cairo.
Lagos, Nigeria

9) For better or for worse, the testing done at this site changed the world forever. In 1965 it was declared a U.S. National Historic Landmark.
Trinity test site

10) Odessos was the original name of this large city, then a trading colony.
Probably Varna, Bulgaria.

11) This was the first port on the Shandong peninsula to be opened to the west in the 1800s.
Yen-t'ai, PRC

Google LatLong: Where in the world is...

Washington Masonic National Memorial

picture of the washington masonic national memorial
The George Washington Masonic National Memorial is a masonic lodge and memorial dedicated to the memory of George Washington, the first president of the United States of America and a Mason.

It is located in Alexandria, Virginia atop Shuter's Hill (named after a union fort on the same location) and affords views of Alexandria and Washington, D.C. to the north. The tower is fashioned after the Lighthouse of Alexandria, in part because of the town's namesake, and the masonic interest in great buildings of the ancient world.

View a video of the Washington Masonic National Memorial on Google Maps

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London Gig Guide Update

We have added a YouTube video gadget to the London Gig Guide. Now as well as being able to search for upcoming gigs in London you can also watch videos of some recent performances.

We have also added the 100 club and The Borderline to the venues covered in the gig guide.

Potsdamer Platz

Picture of Potsdamer Platz
Potsdamer Platz is an important town square and traffic intersection in the centre of Berlin, Germany, lying about one kilometre south of the Brandenburg Gate and the Reichstag, and close to the southeast corner of the Tiergarten park. It is named after the city of Potsdam, some 25 km to the south west, and marks the point where the old road from Potsdam passed through the city wall of Berlin at the Potsdam Gate.

It was totally laid waste during World War II and then left desolate during the Cold War era when the Berlin Wall bisected its former location, but since the fall of the Wall it has risen again as a glittering new heart for the city and the most visible symbol of the new Berlin. The whole area has been redeveloped and the plaza now attracts around 70,000 visitors a day.

View a video of Potsdamer Platz on Google Maps

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