How to Use Google Earth

by Contributor

Google Earth is a free version of a program that has virtual maps of the whole planet. The program has many functions that are user-friendly. From aerial photos and satellite imagery, have a look anywhere around the world and discover other ends of the planet, or just map a route to the nearest grocery store.

Download Google Earth. There is a version available that is completely free, and can be found easily online. Check the system requirements before beginning the download.

View anywhere on the globe from above. See your school, house or workplace by simply clicking Fly To, entering the address and hitting Search. Also for larger views, type in the name of a city, state or country. Waive the mouse over the upper right corner of the image, and the zooming tool will appear next to a navigation tool.

Go on a sightseeing tour all around the whole world. Click in the Places folder on the left. Click on the blue Sightseeing option, and then press the play button below. A tour will begin, and a list of places to tour around the world appears under Sightseeing. Once a city or place is in view, click on the colored buttons on the image to see a photo of the place.

View the map three dimensionally. This does not work for cities and manmade attractions but does work well for natural terrain like the Rocky Mountains or the Grand Canyon. Click on Fly To and enter the name of the destination. Once there, use the horizontal tool above the navigational tool to tilt the view.

Get directions or map a route. Search for a destination. Once the results are found, a bubble will pop from the location with options of "To Here" or "From Here." Click on one of those and enter the other address or location. A map will appear with a line indicating the route. Save them to the My Places folder, or tour the route by selecting that option at the bottom of the directions.