Overview of Google Earth

Google Earth allows you to travel the world through a virtual globe and view satellite imagery, maps, terrain, 3D buildings, and much more. With Google Earth's rich, geographical content, you are able to experience a more realistic view of the world. You can fly to your favorite place, search for businesses and even navigate through directions.

Although the options within Google Earth are endless, here are a few things you can do:

  • Discover the Earth: Fly to any location in the world, learn about a city and it's geographic features, find local businesses, and create tours.
  • Explore the Sky: Enjoy the wonders of the heavens and learn about our solar system.
  • Dive in the Ocean: Go beneath the surface and visit the depths of the ocean and explore the planet's deepest underwater canyons. Learn about ocean observations, climate change, and endangered species. You can even discover new places to surf, dive and fish.
  • Walk on the Moon: Take tours of landing sites narrated by Apollo astronauts and view 3D models of landed spacecraft.
  • Visit Mars: Travel the Red Planet and explore NASA's latest imagery of our galactic neighbor.

Want to jump in and start having fun with Google Earth? Try any of the the following:


  1. View an image of your home, school or any place on Earth - Click Fly To. Enter the location in the input box and click the Search button Search button. In the search results (Places panel), double click the location. Google Earth flies you to this location.
  2. Tour the world - In the Places panel, open the Sightseeing Tour folder and double click Start tour here.
  3. Get driving directions from one place to another and fly (follow) the route - See Getting Directions and Touring the Route.
  4. View recent historical imagery for your favorite locations - In the 3D Viewer menu, choose the Clock button Clock button to enable Historical Imagery. Then, use the time slider to view interesting placemarks throughout recent history. See Viewing Historical Imagery for more information.
  5. View 3D terrain of a place - This is more fun with hilly or mountainous terrain, such as the Grand Canyon. Go to a location (see number 1). When the view shows the location, use the zoom slider to tilt the terrain. See Using the Navigational Controls and Tilting and Viewing Hilly Terrain for more information..