New Imagery Update for Google Earth – Not an April Fools

Probably the only Google Release today that wasn’t an April Fools joke: Google Earth has new imagery! I’ve just gotten off a mountaintop from a full day of skiing. So, I don’t have all the details yet. Google has announced the update along with their usual hints in the form of little riddles. They also mention the release includes new imagery for all seven continents, touching over 86 different countries. But, no details – until tomorrow probably. One GEB reader, Barry Hunter, mentioned to me that most of Wales is now in high resolution. From the clues, I immediately recognized Mt. Fuji in Japan got an update. I’ll start a list here and update it as I get more information. If you know other areas that received an update, please leave a comment to this post.
Areas updated in this imagery release [UPDATED Apr 4th at 1345 EST]:
Google has just released the official list – read my new post with the official list here.

Now unofficial list:

  • Wales
  • Mount Fuji, Japan
  • Havana, Cuba
  • McMurdo, Antarctica
  • Three Gorges Dam, China
  • Canada: London and Guelph in Ontario; British Columbia – Wells Gray National Park, Anderson Lake, Manning Provincial Park; most of Montreal; Quebec City’s outer suburbs
  • Dayton, OH
  • Seattle, WA
  • Vancouver and Vancouver Island
  • Dallas, TX
  • Preston County, WV
  • Parts of Estonia
  • Parts of Moldova
  • Bordeaux, France
  • Bratislava, Slovakia
  • Australia: New South Wales and Western Australia, also areas NW of Melbourne
  • Southwest Pennsylvania
  • Chicago, IL
  • Guanajuato, Mexico
  • Argentina: Cerro Acncaugua, Mendoza, Rosario
  • Romania: Cara Severin, Iasi, Braila, Galati, Iasi, Ploiesti (eastern Romania), Brasov – south west
  • China – North Korea border area
  • British Columbia: Wells Gray National Park, Anderson Lake, Manning Provincial Park
  • Azores: Flores, Corvo
  • Panama: Tabogo Islan, Punta San Blas
  • Poland: near Poznan
  • Catalonia/Spain: Barcelona – MoRimini ntjuic Castle now appears (previously censored)
  • Italy: Rimini, Palermo
  • Zimbabwe – DG strips
  • Croatia: Rijeka county (mountains), Šibenik and county, Island Pašman, Zagreb
  • Kazakhstan: Some cities, and Semipalatinsk Test Site
  • Algeria: Constantine
  • Brazil: Santa Maria, Sao Francisco de Paula; Nova Petropolis; Armacao de Buzios.
  • Parts of Botswana
  • Parts of Namibia

NOTE: this list is based on input from GEB readers. I have not had time to verify every item. Some of these may turn out to be updates from earlier releases. Currently Google Maps does not yet have this imagery release, so you can verify by clicking on the “View in Google Maps” button in GE to see whether the imageery is new. Check back here later to see what other places were updated in this imagery release, and for the official report when Google releases the list.

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.

PLEASE NOTE: Google Earth Blog is no longer writing regular posts. As a result, we are not accepting new comments or questions about Google Earth. If you have a question, use the official Google Earth and Maps Forums or the Google Earth Community Forums.


  1. London, Ontario
    Dayton, OH
    Seattle, WA
    Vancouver and Vancouver Island
    Dallas, TX
    Parts of Estonia
    Parts of Moldova
    Bordeaux, France
    Bratislava, Slovakia
    some of the locations I found

  2. Frank,
    The Australian states of New South Wales and the top part of Western Australia have received base image updates. If you look at the whole of Australia you can see this clearly. Image is quite old and not good quality but it is better than what we had.

  3. A few more:
    Chicago, IL (from question 1, I think).
    Potosí, Bolivia (from question 5).
    Cerro Aconcaugua, in the Mendoza province in Argentina (from question 8).

  4. New high-resolution areas:
    Romania: Caras Severin, Iasi, Braila, Galati, Iasi, Ploiesti
    China – North Korea border

  5. Large parts of eastern Romania has been added.

  6. Sebastian says

    Some regions in British Columbia aside from Vancouver/Vancouver Island seem to have received an update as well: Wells Gray National Park, Anderson Lake, Manning Provincial Park etc.

  7. I recognized new hi-res imagery of the two western islands of the Acores: Flores and Corvo.
    Also there is some new in Panama, like Taboga Island and Punta San Blas.

  8. Rob Tesselaar says

    Around Poznan (Poland) has been updated.

  9. No updates for metropolitan Melbourne yet again, but there is a respectable amount of new imagery in areas of Country Victoria, Australia, mainly immediately north west of Melbourne along the Western and Calder Freeways. The alpine region east of Melbourne now has some new imagery inclding Marysville and one of Australia’s top ski resorts, Mount Buller. I’ll post again later if I find more significant updates

  10. Montjuïc Castle in Barcelona (Catalonia) previosly censored, now appears again. The picture is from DigitalGlobe, instead of Cartographic Institute of Catalonia (imagery for all Catalonia). Rest of censored areas in Catalonia remains censored (near Roses and near Montseny)

  11. Rimini, Italy now has new photo

  12. Adagio78 says

    Just to add the town of Portsmouth (GB).

  13. Deagu Metropolitan city area is updated too.
    And, some area is updated by SPOT image.
    You can check using

  14. I think Botswana and Namibia have received base updates. Certainly since last time I checked.
    I cant get the Pangea easter egg to work. Was it yesterday only or do I need to download the lasted version of Google earth?

  15. Zimbabwe has also a new base layer

  16. Updates in Croatia – Rijeka county (mountains), Šibenik and county, Island Pašman, Zagreb – new image

  17. GEB_reader says

    new imagiries of some cities in kazakhstan

  18. Romania: Brasov, south west region new imagery
    Russia: Semipalatinsk Test Site, part of Balapan complex

  19. Sorry about my last post, Semipalatinsk test site is in Kazakhstan, not Russia

  20. It appears that portions of NYC’s four outer boroughs have been updated, although none in their entirety: much of Queens & Brooklyn, about 1/4 of Staten Island (north end) and about 60% of the Bronx. (The new lat-long blog ‘hunt’ notwithstanding, Yankee Stadium I believe remains unchanged!) The only change to Manhattan itself as far as I can tell is at the northernmost tip where it meets and updated section of the Bronx.

  21. Italy: Palermo has new photo

  22. Constantine in Algeria, probably other parts of Algeria as well.

  23. Guelph, Ontario is now high-resolution.

  24. Guelph, Ontario, Canada

  25. Most of Montreal metro as well as Quebec City’s outer suburbs in Canada have also been updated


  27. The current Portsmouth (UK) imagery is not brand new – I noticed the update a few weeks ago (my house is covered by the Portsmouth imagery).

  28. The imagery ‘update’ for Vancouver seems to be about 5 years older than the previous imagery.

  29. Mendoza, Argentina
    Rosario, Argentina

  30. The answer to question 5 is not Potosí, Bolivia. It is Guanajuato, México. I noticed my mistake checking Google Maps.

  31. Mithgol the Webmaster says

    We now have much better image of the eastern part of Anapa (Russia, Black Sea coast of the Northern Caucasus), and the nearby town of Sukko, and the southern part of Gostagayevskaya, and the nearby villages and stanitsas and an airport.

  32. Graham Till says

    I believe Malta and Exeter UK are new

  33. edmondodantes says

    Italy: Palermo has new photo

  34. The imagery of Portsmouth (UK) has not been updated – shipping in the harbour for example is exactly in the same positions – but it is still recent and excellent quality high resolution coverage, and we are happy with it in Pompey.
    Wonderful – all of Wales at last with good quality imagery, although some old patches remain in the south. A small and distinctive country (principality to be exact) well worth a look now.
    Still no improvement in Scotland – surely the most heavily ‘censored’ country in Europe. Have a look NE of Aberdeen.

  35. Ernst M. Kofler says

    The French nuclear test site in the Sahara, the Taourite mountain, is now also in good hires. Lat 24.0465° Lon 5.03846°

  36. Montreal Island and Laval has been updated to the summer of 2007

  37. Guelph, Ontario
    Brantford, Ontario
    Peterborough, Ontario

  38. Portugal: New imagery at Almada and Seixal
    The Terrain layer was been updated in all country

  39. Cockadoodledoo says

    I may be wrong, but I think the N-S patch of land just east of Helsingborg, Sweden is new imagery.

  40. Yes I must agree with a previous post that the coverage of Scotland is quite poor, likewise across the water in Ireland there are still parts of Dublin, the capital city of Ireland that are not covered. Luckily for me Yahoo and Microsoft Virtual Earth have increased their coverage of Ireland recently. I probably use those 2 more now because I have been waiting for so long for Google to properly update Ireland and also big errors in labelling and administrative borders reported to them through there official error notification website are still showing after more than 6 months. According to the Microsoft Ireland blog the VE team are working on pushing out more birdseye imagery of Ireland to supplement the imagery released last week (which as far as I can see now covers 8 cities/towns on the island)so unless things improve on the GE front I think I will have to permanently switch allegiances from GE to VE as zooming into your country update after update to see very little change is very demoralising for those with an interest. On another point I see GE has recently done its bit for anglo-irish relations by calling the city of Londonderry, Londonderry/Derry. There is an interesting article about that at

  41. Hi, yet again Laos was ignored, last update was so long ago

  42. Namibia, Botswana and Zimbabwe are not yet on your list. They all received completely new higher rez base imagery which overflows slightly into neighboring countries such as the southern edge of Zambia.

  43. The imagery of Bordeaux, france is a few years older than the previous imagery. Quite frustrating.

  44. Almost entire North Korea in high resolution

  45. Major updates in Greece also. Unfortunately they have replaced the existing imagery of my hometown Thessaloniki with new ones, worst..
    I’m quite disappointed…

  46. Knowledgeum says

    They updated the vancouver area with much older imagery, the last update they did for the suburbs was far more recent (1 year old) the new imagery is probably about 4 years old.


  48. Dunkleosteus says

    “Still no improvement in Scotland – surely the most heavily ‘censored’ country in Europe. Have a look NE of Aberdeen.”
    True, the size of that cloud is rather obscene. However, overall coverage of Scotland is comparable that of the Nordic countries sans Denmark. Besides, it has much better height data than Finland and Iceland which were left outside the SRTM. Sweden and Norway are lucky having better terrain coverage north of 60°N (see Google Maps to see what I mean). Hopefully Google fixes this for other countries as soon as possible. Ditto for northern Canada, Greenland, Russia and others. It is frustrating that the local terrain looks flat in places where it actually is not.

  49. With the post saying Botswana having high-res, I checked Pete’s Pond (Nat.Geo. webcam), and sure enough, it’s visible now.

  50. Parts of central Slovenia have new imagery. Exactly the parts where I have spent several vacations. So I’m a happy chappy now!

  51. several new strips and squares in Colombia are new, esp. in the Quindio area, however the high res does not cover the capital Armenia.

  52. Ohh also Bermejo, Bolivia has high res images (The southernmost populated place in Bolivia)

  53. Still no updates for Jakarta area. How Come ?

  54. Chatham, Ontario is updated as well.

  55. Several hi-res updates in ex-USSR
    – part of Veliky Novgorod (Great Novgorod)
    – in Krasnodar area – places around Anapa and Temryuk
    – little area near Murmansk
    – steppe areas in Crimea
    – Sukhumi, Gagry, Novy Afon
    (from here – )

  56. Turkey, Kutahya and Adapazari provinces got detailed images.

  57. The area north of Brisbane (~50km) , Australia, also needs to be filled in with hires.
    Is there a GE “principles for sequence of hires coverage”?
    Rather than just whining, I’m prepared to pay extra for wide coverage……..

  58. Why not update Addis Ababa the capital Africa? It has not been updated since 5 years back..

  59. I love Google Earth but I don’t think they can do anything..

PLEASE NOTE: Google Earth Blog is no longer writing regular posts. As a result, we are not accepting new comments or questions about Google Earth. If you have a question, use the official Google Earth and Maps Forums or the Google Earth Community Forums.