Australia Has Detailed Roads in Google Earth

Detailed Roads for Australia in Google EarthAt last! After months of waiting, Google has migrated the detailed road maps they had in Google Maps into the Google Earth layer for roads. A week or two ago, we had a clue this was coming when some GEB readers pointed out the driving directions were available for Australia – just no visible layer. Today the layer finally was released. Both Australia and New Zealand roads were added at about the same time to Google Maps last fall. Since in GE the sparse roads for New Zealand are now completely missing, I suspect New Zealand will soon have detailed roads as well.
One thing which will probably take a bit longer for this region are the other points of interest layers (like Parks, Lodging, Dining, etc.). Once they have added those layers this regions will be more on a par with the US and Europe.

About Frank Taylor

Frank Taylor started the Google Earth Blog in July, 2005 shortly after Google Earth was first released. He has worked with 3D computer graphics and VR for many years and was very impressed with this exciting product. Frank completed a 5.5 year circumnavigation of the earth by sailboat in June 2015 which you can read about at Tahina Expedition, and is a licensed pilot, backpacker, diver, and photographer.


  1. I’m glad to see the long-awaited roads are almost here, but what really spoils the view of New Zealand is the poor resolution (and often poorly georeferenced) terrain data. For example, take a look at Mt. Taranaki on the north island.
    I’d be happy if they could get something comparable to the SRTM elevation data used for the US, although at some point it would be really cool to see some high-resolution Lidar data for a few urban areas in Google Earth.

  2. Actually, I think the information for New Zealand roads is there because you can still look for directions in NZ. It’s just that the maps are only marked with the alking trails.

  3. Google Earth has turned me into a map freak. In the past I have seen absolutely amazing detailed elevation data around Queenstown (NZ) in Nasa’s Worldwind you had to install some thingy (Can’t remember) to see it but it can be done. I just can not understand why Google Earth won’t use the superior lidar data. I live in West of Auckland in the Waitakere hills. Well in Google Earth these hills look terribly flat and boring.
    With your connections. Can you tell us why Google Earth has such a poor elevation data?

  4. Following up on my previous post:
    Celebration! I discovered today that New Zealand now has hi-res elevation data for the entire country.
    Wow! This really brings the NZ maps to live. Awesome. Thanks Google!

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