Tuesday, February 19, 2008

360 Panoramas from Rottnest Island

360 panorama from Rottnest Islandpanorama (c) Peter Watts - all rights reserved

Rottnest Island is a short distance from Perth and Freemantle off the coast of Western Australia. It is a popular tourist destination, known for it's sandy beaches, being car free and the small quokkas, marsupials the size of a large rabbit that inhabit the island. The coastline is rugged, carved of the interaction of limestone with the sea. There are now 360° panoramas from Rottnest linked to a Google map.

360° Panorama from Cape Vlamingh
360 panorama from Cape Vlamingh on Rottnest Islandpanorama (c) Peter Watts - all rights reserved

The most famous parts of the island are Cape Vlamingh, named after a Dutch explorer who mistook the quokkas for rats and so bequeathed the name to the island ('rotte' = Dutch for 'rat'). From here it is possible to see whales, dolphins, ospreys and other sea life. Some of the beaches, like Geordie Beach, are lined with holiday accomodation on the shore and pleasure boats in the water. Others are protected from both boats and fishing, and are little secluded places of rest. Among these are Mabel Cove and Little Parakeet Bay.

360° Panorama from Mabel Cove
360 panorama from Mabel Cove on Rottnest Islandpanorama (c) Peter Watts - all rights reserved

Being an island surrounded by lagoons, Rottnest has seen it's fair share of shipwrecks over time, and has 2 lighthouses to ward shipping away. On a good day it is possible to see Perth from the Bathurst Lighthouse on the eastern end of the island.

A Thousand 360 Panoramas

Marking another milestone, Panoramic Earth has now reached more than a thousand 360° panoramas linked to Google maps. The thousandth panorama is of the Inner Harbour at Dartmouth, and was taken by Malcolm Etherington, who wrote the following about the image.
  • "This attractive little harbour in the town centre is known locally as the 'Boatfloat' and is surrounded by busy shops, cafes, restaurants, and many fine Georgian buildings. It connects to the main Dartmouth estuary via lock gates under the roadway, which are currently disused, and so dries out at low tide as seen in this photo."
Malcolm has contributed a number of panoramas to Panoramic Earth, which can be found in the Malcolm Etherington Panorama Index. Some of the panoramas are also featured on EuroPanoramas.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Panoramas from the Great Ocean Road

The Great Ocean Road in Australia is about 270km starting at Torquay near Geelong in the east and ending at Warrnambool in the west in Victoria. The road was built by 3000 returned servicemen from WWI, known locally as 'Diggers', as a war memorial to the fallen. Today the Great Ocean Road is better known for the Twelve Apostles, a series of 8 limestone stacks that stand just of shore near to Port Campbell. The Twelve Apostles used to be known as the Sow and Piglets, but this was not considered good for tourism and so the name was changed. In 2005 one of the stacks collapsed into the sea leaving the 8 remaining today. Panoramic Earth now features a number of 360 panoramas taken from various points along the Great Ocean Road showing a number of the prominent formations.

Below are small versions of some of the 360 panoramas featured. Click on the image to be taken to a larger version linked to Google maps of the region where you will also find more information.

Loch Ard Gorge 360 Panorama
360 panorama of Loch Ard Gorgepanorama (c) Peter Watts - all rights reserved

The Twelve Apostles 360 Panorama
360 panorama of the Twelve Apostlespanorama (c) Peter Watts - all rights reserved

The Grotto 360 Panorama
360 panorama of The Grottopanorama (c) Peter Watts - all rights reserved

Sunday, February 10, 2008

New Zealand Seals

Seal at Shag Point, New Zealand
Shag Point in New Zealand is just one of many places where you can see seals. The point of on South Island, a little off the beaten track, so not many people visit it. Which means, that for those that do, there are not hundreds of people wandering around with cameras. The picture shown here is part of a 360 panorama of Shag Point which shows the surrounding rugged coastline and small islands just offshore where many seals can be found basking. At dusk penguins come ashore and waddle up the beach to their burrows in the sand.

New Panoramas on Panoramic Earth