Tour the Amazon with Google Street View; No Passport Needed

Google Street View launched in 2007, giv­ing web users the abil­i­ty to tour neigh­bor­hoods with a series of 360° panoram­ic maps. The tech­nol­o­gy seemed pret­ty straight­for­ward … until peo­ple real­ized that it was­n’t. Since ‘07, techies have fig­ured out some cool and unex­pect­ed uses for the soft­ware, and Google began using it to offer vir­tu­al tours of famous his­tor­i­cal sites (Pom­peii, Stone­henge and Ver­sailles) and then inter­na­tion­al muse­ums, rang­ing from the MoMA and Met in New York City, to the Uffizi Gallery in Flo­rence, and the Van Gogh Muse­um in Ams­ter­dam. (More on that here.) And now they’re push­ing the lim­its of the tech­nol­o­gy just a bit fur­ther.

Yes­ter­day Google announced that Street View will let you expe­ri­ence the beau­ty and diver­si­ty of the Ama­zon basin. Once you enter Street View’s Ama­zon tour, you can:

Take a vir­tu­al boat ride down the main sec­tion of the Rio Negro, and float up into the small­er trib­u­taries where the for­est is flood­ed. Stroll along the paths of Tumbi­ra, the largest com­mu­ni­ty in the Reserve, or vis­it some of the oth­er com­mu­ni­ties who invit­ed us to share their lives and cul­tures. Enjoy a hike along an Ama­zon for­est trail and see where Brazil nuts are har­vest­ed. You can even see a for­est crit­ter if you look hard enough!

The video above explains how the project got start­ed and how the images were gath­ered, while also offer­ing a quick demo of the online expe­ri­ence. You can start your voy­age to the Ama­zon here, or head to Google’s blog to learn more about this project cre­at­ed in part­ner­ship with the Ama­zonas Sus­tain­able Foun­da­tion (FAS).

Note: Are you a writer inter­est­ed in edu­ca­tion­al tech­nol­o­gy and open edu­ca­tion­al resources? And, do you want to write for Open Cul­ture? Then drop us a line.

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