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Top Places to Visit in Google Earth VR

Top Places to visit in Google Earth VR - The Best VR Christmas Presents for Family and Friends this Year

We live on a beautiful planet, and the number of places one could visit on it are certainly more than anyone could cover in a single lifetime. However, it’s only the lucky few who can manage their finances well enough to make a regular thing of globetrotting. And even these will only be able to visit a small number of the possible destinations on this incredibly diverse planet.

Yet it has suddenly become possible to see… everything

Suddenly you can travel anywhere on the planet, whenever you wish you, irrespective of time, finances, or even the weather. Walk in the metropolises of the globe, look out over the Grand Canyon, or even take a trip into orbit, all in one afternoon.

Google Earth VR, the new ‘hyperspaced’ version of the old Google Earth, makes all this possible. So raise the curtain on a new avatar of an old program, and an extremely impressive application of augmented reality.

But don’t take our word for it. See for yourself…

A decades-long journey into the future…

Google Earth was created seven years in the past, merely as an intuitive tool to help people find their way around our planet. However, in the last decade, it has been downloaded an incredible two billion times. No other related application can even come close to the widespread use Google Earth enjoys today.

Google Earth VR is just a step onward from that

It was developed in secret for four years before being launched, and adds a whole new dimension to what is, essentially, an old system. The head of the project is Dominik Kaeser, and he says that it was what Google calls a ‘twenty percent’ project. That is to say, it was a project of the sort that Google encourages employees to take on, on a secondary basis, that may be of use to the company at some point in the future.

But it’s not just Google Earth ported to virtual reality

Not at all. Google Earth VR is an experience in its own right. The ergonomics have been totally revised, and the interactions with the application redesigned. Indeed, Google Earth VR offers, among other things, flight as the preferred mode of travel between destinations.

It’s a bird. It’s a plane. No, it’s just an ordinary citizen… flying in VR.

Let’s choose a random location on the planet, and fly there. Here’s Manhattan…

Ah, too many skyscrapers? Perhaps one of the older cities on this planet would be more to your taste. So here’s Rome…

Don’t forget to focus on the Colosseum while you’re there. Or on any of the other glorious landmarks this city has to offer.

places to visit in vr

And if exquisite interiors and architecture interest you, may we suggest the Palace of the Sun King in Versailles, in France, relic of another, more decadent – yet definitely more artistic – time.

visit in vr Versailles

Or how about the wondrous city of Florence?


Do you believe that human glories pale before nature?

If so, a visit to the Great Barrier Reef near Heron Island would prove your point. Yes, the barrier reef has been mapped by Google Earth VR, and you can actually visit and explore certain sections of it.

great barrier reed

And you can follow that up with a visit to Switzerland’s exquisite Alps. We’ve done this, and it’s definitely worth experiencing. You can follow mountain rivers up from blue green lakes, as they circle through quaint valleys with little towns and villages, to finally end at some mighty dam high in the mountains.

swiss alps

If you’re feeling more austere, how about a trip to the base camp of the proudest mountain on the planet, Everest…

base camp everest

A walk around the crossroads of Shibuya in Tokyo should certainly be on your list, or exploring the glories of America’s Rocky Mountains.

Or, if your taste leads you to the historic roots of humanity, we suggest the Céide Fields in Mayo County in Ireland, where you can see Stone Age relics from humanity’s past.

Ceide Fields in Mayo County

The possibilities, fellow humans, are really endless…

Google Earth VR: The largest library of VR content… created by accident

It all started when Kaeser began to understand that Google Earth’s accumulated data from almost a decade could eventually be combined with virtual reality technologies into an unprecedented experience. Google had, in effect, accidentally created the most massive library of VR content on earth. Google now has a full-fledged team working on Google Earth VR.

The project offers more than 510 million square kilometers, allowing one to see 94% of the planetary landmass in glorious 360 degree vision, in 175 cities and an excess of 600 urban areas. Here’s a video that shows you more of what exploration in Google Earth is like…

But you’re mistaken if you think that Google Earth is limited to ‘earth’. Google has made special efforts to include, for example, the moon…

The experience also offers several modes

One can either go for a walk, or select places on a list or even access guides in prime locales via the “TOURS” option. I’ll come back to this a little later. By default, a comfort mode reduces the field of vision during the ‘flight’ to avoid “motion sickness” (feelings of nausea) associated with virtual reality. You are free to activate or deactivate this mode. Google Earth VR is already available for a range of VR headsets.

Guided tours

You can, of course, explore different locations on the planet intuitively, and at will, especially as Google has provided you with the ability to actually fly across the planet, or even ‘fly in’ from space. But for the more traditionally minded, the company offers detailed guided tours of special locations.

Additions planned to the app will allow it to even interact with users in future, allowing a whole new dimension to ‘virtual travel’ that would allow people to not only to explore their world, but to also ‘save’ their visits to different places, and share them with friends.

There’s a vast different between reading about Paris, or watching a video of it, and actually exploring its streets in virtual reality. Google Earth VR has allowed humanity to take a giant step into tomorrow… today.

NOON VR Headset Review


The NOON Virtual Reality Headset is a crucial step up from the skew of basic mobile based headsets on the market today. I might point out that the NOON is not integrally a gaming headset, but it nevertheless presents a user with many interesting possibilities that other headsets do not. For example, sight based controls allow for intuitive and effortless viewing of 3D movies. There are also attached apps that can convert conventional video into movies that can be used with the NOON VR headset.

The specifications of the NOON VR headset

The headset provides a field of view of around 120 degrees and has gyroscopic sensors. It also has a special tap control. The manufacturer claims that the lenses use a special technology that prevents fatigue to the eyes. The lenses are also supposed to be scratch resistant, which is especially good news, as scratches to the lenses can really ruin your VR experience. Apps included with the device can be used to stream the active app from a PC to the headset. This means that many PC games can be effortlessly streamed to the NOON VR headset. This feature also allows the headset to be used as an alternate to a monitor display. The streaming app is compatible with both OS X and with Windows.

Pros and Cons

Here are some of the advantages and disadvantages of the Noon VR headset.


  • The built-in apps allow direct streaming off the PC desktop to the headset.
  • The apps can convert your movie clips to VR compatible videos.
  • The headset has a futuristic design and incorporates a touch screen in the front for easy control.
  • The lenses are extremely scratch resistant and specially designed to reduce fatigue to the eyes.
  • Finally, the headset has been designed to fit a large variety of mobiles.


  • One of the most important negative points is that the headset does not support mobile devices that run Windows as an operating system.
  • Each headset can also link to a rather small range of devices.
  • Finally, the headset does not seem to support Linux.

Check out the best NOON VR PRO deals

Using the NOON VR headset

The NOON VR headset is rather unique in that it actually has an authentication process before you use the headset. This is done through an integrated app that allows you to utilize the headset. Each headset has its own activation code, and this is printed on the manual that accompanies the headset. Another copy of the code can be found on the headset itself, to the right of it, as well as underneath the headset.


One potential problem with the NOON VR headset is that it is very exclusive, and cannot be integrated with Google’s platforms. There are official iOS or Android apps that allow the headset to interface with mobile devices. The mobile itself will need to be nearly 5 inches long in order to sit comfortably and firmly inside the headset’s cradle. The app allows your phone to integrate itself with about five devices, which is really rather limited for a headset which demands you authenticate yourself just to get started. The headset does not integrate with a remote Bluetooth device, and instead uses a tap sensor that is unique to headsets manufactured by NOON.

Setting your preferences

When you first fire up the headset in VR, there’s an option that allows you to place the controls as per your own preferences. The initial menu allows you to calibrate the sensors as well, though you can always re-calibrate them whenever you wish. While this process may take a few moments, it’s well worth the time spent, as it considerably adds to the immersion of your VR experience.

The lenses tend to have no problems focusing, but there is a special focusing feature in the menu that can allow you to focus the lenses manually if necessary. The dock for the mobile opens up effortlessly, and it’s very easy to load the mobile in place and shut the doc. The mobile fits in very securely, which is always a concern with any mobile based headsets.

Firing it up

Fit the headset on to your head and adjust the straps to ensure that you have a snug fit. Choose your settings  in the initial menu, and you can get started right away. One of the best features of the NOON VR headset is that it can allow a user to use the storage capacity and processing power of a personal computer rather than the very much lesser capacity and power of a mobile phone. The fact that you can stream computer apps directly from the desktop makes this headset an extremely versatile one for either mixed reality or virtual reality. The company also has apps that can allow an entire family to watch the same movie as part of a shared experience.


The app integrated into the NOON VR headset is both an extremely positive point, as well as a slightly negative one. The positive aspect of the NOON VR app is that it allows you to integrate seamlessly with a PC, as well as to integrate different devices with the PC. The negative side of the app is that it does not allow you to access a lot of Google’s content, which those who have been Cardboard fans may not appreciate.

To be honest though, this slight drawback is completely negated by the fact that you can use PC apps seamlessly with the NOON VR headset. In fact, you use the Noon VR headset as a display device for your PC, for all practical purposes. Another very important plus point of the NOON VR headset is that its integrated tracking sensors can actually work to considerably reduce motion sickness. While the focus of the NOON VR headset seems to be geared towards playing movies, its ability to stream from a PC makes it an excellent reasonably priced choice for gamers, as well as for those who want to experiment with mixed reality.

Check out the best NOON VR PLUS deals on Amazon

The Best VR Exercise Games


Exercising and playing video games simultaneously seemed like an impossible feat for decades. The widely spread misconception that people who enjoy playing video games are physically scrubby somehow goes with the territory, so we got used to it. I personally sweat quite often even while playing non-VR games, but this is due to increased excitement or stress. Yet, this is a far cry from real exercise.

And while your physique has nothing to do with whether you’re a gamer or not, with introduction of room-scale virtual reality and motion controllers, all of a sudden games became actually physically demanding! So yeah, nowadays excelling at some virtual reality games requires literally require breaking a sweat!

Brace yourselves, fellow gamers, this is a great time to be alive! Our time has come! We can nowadays play games and exercise at the same time!

So, let’s take a look at some of the best VR exercise games!


Superhot VR is a brilliant virtual reality shooter game. For the most part, the environment is set in an all-white sterile room and you get to fight against a swarm of bad guys coming at you. Now to set things straight, you wouldn’t stand a chance if they were moving in real time, since you are heavily outnumbered and outgunned.

Fortunately, in Superhot VR, you will be fighting in slow motion. Therefore you will be able to sidestep bullets and incoming attacks, which makes you feel like you are Neo from Matrix. You have so many ways of dealing with the bad guys which ensures it doesn’t get boring. Also, they effectively drop their weapons once they’re dealt with so you can pick those up and let them taste their own remedy!

Aside from the exercise, this fun VR game will require tactical thinking as well!

DOWNLOAD: Steam | Amazon

The Thrill of the Fight

The Thrill of the Fight is an intense VR boxing simulator. Now, if you’ve ever wondered how the hell professional boxers get tired when they are pretty much just standing there, you’ve probably never tried punching a bag for more than 30 seconds. Well, now you get to experience how demanding and intense boxing is, and without the possibility you’ll actually get knocked out.

The developers did their best to bring the realism to this simulation, hence you won’t be able to knock out your virtual opponent with few simple one-two combinations. It takes literally HUNDREDS of swings, blocks and dodges to take down your adversary. The Thrill of the Fight will surely make you sweat a lot, so it’s a good idea to visit VR Cover and find a suitable product for your headset.



If you’ve never laid your eyes on Audioshield, the simplest explanation is that it is something like a VR equivalent to Guitar Hero. Basically, Audioshield gives you rhythmically fueled music workout. The idea behind it is simple. First, load your favorite music from the PC. Then, the game generates a bunch of neon paint blobs which are racing at you and your shield. You literally have to punch your way through the song. It may seem complicated but it really isn’t at all. Just check out the video below.

As you can see, the game is very simple and intuitive, and besides having fun and burning calories, you’ll also be practicing some slick dance moves!



In Holopoint, you assume the role of a Samurai archer. So how does shooting arrows feel in virtual reality? Surprisingly realistic and very, very intense! The thing is, you won’t only be shooting stationary targets, but also ninja invaders who will shoot back at you! There are two options when dealing with incoming missiles – either dodging or destroying them with your own shots in mid air. Now dodging and repeatedly shooting arrows is where the intensity of Holopoint comes from. Make sure to take breaks!

All things considered, Holopoint is very simple game but it is unlikely that you’ll get bored by it. On the contrary, you will want to replay it over and over again!


We hope that you liked our list of best VR exercise games! Game on!

Sincerely yours, VRBorg Collective