We’ve all seen video at some point or other of Ambrym’s awesome boiling lava lakes. But now, thanks to an intrepid team from the Google Street View project, we can descend into the heart of Marum’s fuming, roiling caldera from the comfort of your own desktop or tablet.
According to a Google spokesperson, “Street View imagery is available across 81 countries, as well as parts of the Arctic and Antarctica (featuring penguins!).
“With Street View, you can explore natural wonders and world landmarks in 360 degree imagery, covering a huge variety of places, from the temples of Angkor Wat, to the fjords of Greenland, or the underwater world of Okinawa.
“The Street View team even went indoors, for instance capturing a miniature Oktoberfest, the Grand Palais in Paris, or art exhibitions.”
Recent additions to the list of exotic attractions include underwater vistas near the Japanese island of Okinawa, Greenland highlights and selections from the West African nation of Ghana.
“Users can access Street View in a number of ways: through the Street View site, the Street View app (available both on Android and iOS), directly on Google Maps (both on desktop and mobile on Android | iOS) – and via virtual reality devices (such as Google Cardboard and Daydream View).”
Why Ambrym? Google states, “The Ambrym volcano is a spectacular site, and one of the most active volcanoes in the world.
“Our hope is that virtually visiting Vanuatu will inspire people around the world to gain a deeper appreciation for the majestic nature of Vanuatu, and the volcano’s influence on the surrounding communities and landscape.”
Asked if they were considering adding any other of Vanuatu’s globally unique attractions to Street View in the near future, the company representative responded, “We’re always keen to expand the locations covered by Street View and we’d love to continue to share the richness, beauty and historical significance of Vanuatu with a global audience, but we don’t have anything concrete to announce at this point.”
Further details and images from the project will be available in the upcoming issue of the Vanuatu Business Review, and on the Daily Post Facebook page and website in the coming days.
Links to the Street View volcano virtual tour are available on the Vanuatu Daily Post Facebook page, and will be added to the online version of this story.