Google Street View Goes to Jerusalem, Gets LostBy: Drew Bowling - April 23, 2012
Google Maps announced a new location that was recently added to Street View and given it’s one of the oldest places in the world, this update is a fun one: Jerusalem. While most people might not consider the city “fun” because of the intense dispute that is ever-present in the area as well as it’s deeply, seriously spiritual significance to millions of religious people in the world (which is why the city’s so hotly disputed), this update is a fun trip in history, architecture, and geography. And you don’t have to go anywhere in order to see it.
To get a preview of what lies ahead in Jerusalem Street View, Google Maps put together the demo video below.
Of course, given that this swath of land in Israel is probably the most disputed and sought after territory in the world, YouTube commenters for the above video did not delay in turning the forum into a public debate about who is the rightful occupant over the holy real estate.
One of the reasons this land is so eternally disputed is because of this location here, the Dome of the Rock. It’s a religious site that’s claimed by both Jews and Muslims, which has caused the temple to be regarded as one of the most fervently contested religious locations in the world. Here you can see it as you would while standing near the Mount of Olives.
Another significant area of the land that you’ll be able to see is the Wailing Wall, or Western Wall, which is just outside of the temple seen above. It lies just to the west of the temple and is considered one of the most religiously important sites in Judaism outside of the temple itself.
Just for kicks, I found what appears to be one of the Google Street View people presumably consulting a map and even asking for directions (if you spent any time navigating the narrow corridors of the vertiginous roads in this city, you would probably need to stop for directions, too). Have a look at what appears to be the Google employee sporting a “I’m feeling lucky” t-shirt. “I’m feeling lucky,” by the way, is one of the search options you can choose when doing a search at google.com.
Some of the other geographic features you can explore with this Street View update is the Biblical Zoo, the Hanging Gardens of Haifa, and the Via Dolorosa. So kick off your slippers and go enjoy the sights of Jerusalem.