Google Street View Reaches Hawaii Landmarks

The Honolulu Zoo, Iolani Palace and Wet ‘N’ Wild Hawaii can now be explored thanks to Google’s Street View Trike.

Google's Street View Trike in action.

photo: courtesy google inc.

It started in 2007 with only five cities, but since then, Google’s Street View has photographed the streets of 39 countries, including Hawaii and areas of Antarctica. This technology allows users to tour the world virtually in 360 degrees at street level. Google has typically captured these images using its now famous Street View car, but until recently was unable to enter smaller areas: universities, walkways, parks and other pedestrian-oriented locations.

In 2009, the Street View Trike, a pedicab with a high-tech, 15-lens camera mounted on top, was born. Along with the pedicab, the company also created snowmobile and trolley systems, both mounted with their cutting-edge camera technology. Google is always expanding the depth and range of its interactive world map, constantly developing new ways to capture formerly untouchable areas, including underwater locations.

In their original blog post about Hawaii’s Street View, Google notes that history buffs will be able to see Iolani Palace in high resolution from the street. Now Iolani Palace, along with the Honolulu Zoo and Wet ‘N’ Wild Hawaii, are the first spots in Hawaii to use the Street View Trike. Both tourists and residents are now able to explore these locations in vivid, 360-degree panoramas. Suddenly people from around the world are able to walk through the zoo, determining which exhibits are must-see during their summer trips to Oahu.

Google says that many more Hawaii destinations are on the way, but it’s not saying which ones, exactly. For now, we’re simply excited to see the world becoming much more interconnected, one street or landmark at a time.

Do you have a business you’d like mapped? There’s no charge to have Google capture your museum or retail business, only an application is required, but be prepared for competition. The process can take several months from beginning to end, and the company has plenty of applicants.

For more information on Google’s latest mapping adventures, visit the blog of the Google Maps and Google Earth team.