WikiSailing – Flying/Sailing Sightseeing Tours in Google Earth

WikiSailing flying tour in Google Earth pluginGoogle Maps Mania pointed me to WikiSailing – the english/french wiki has lots of interesting sailing information. They have information about anchorages, dive sites, windsurfing locations, parks, and more. They also have a section to be devoted to showing sailing trips. But, what is really interesting is that they have started developing a Google Earth Plugin application to give tours of sailing destinations. These tours simulate an airplane or sailboat moving along a track around the destination you select. There are a few sightseeing examples with the simulated tours on their main page. Check out the Sydney Tour for example. You start out with an airplane, select the “Run/Pause” button in the lower left and you will immediately start flying around Sydney (assuming you have the GE plugin installed). You can adjust the speed, zoom level (how close to the plane your view is), and which direction relative to the plane you view.
The application still has some rough edges. The sailboat mode is a little jerky even if you speed up the simulation speed. And, the sailboat follows the same path as the plane – including going over the ground – oops. Also, you can view from behind, left, or right. But, the view from the front doesn’t seem to work. But, I think this is an excellent idea which makes viewing locations more dynamic without requiring someone to take control of the flight/tour themselves. Although, it would be nice if you could also fly yourself! A GEB reader pointed out to me you can select “Manual” instead of “Teleport” and then you can fly it yourself using the cursor keys!

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. The view from the front does work, but in fact it’s a view FROM the nose. You can check the coloured icons which have small triangels pointing to the viewing direction.
    A very nice idea with a lot of potential, I suppose, althought it crashed my browser twice…

  2. Gary Alexander says:

    So let me get this straight.
    I am unable to download the latest version of GE, unless I agree to allow Google Updater to re-install after uninstalling it a few days ago.
    This is BS.
    I do NOT need a program running 24/7 in the background, just to occasionally give me an update.

  3. to Gary Alexander:
    No, you do not need the updater. You have to hunt for the link, but it’s possible to find one to a direct download of an installer file. My work machine refuses to let the Google Updater to connect, thusly I have to find that direct link every time.
    — BTW, NOTE!! There’s been a Street View update. Italy has Rome, Milan, and Firenze as well as Lake Como in place now.

  4. Now wikisailing has moved to . You still have a lot of information about anchorages, dive sites and nice tours in a plane using Google-arth plugin.
    Since Google-Earth 5 plugin, you can dive and drive your submarine. As examples along the California coast in the Pioneer Canyon
    If you prefer a deeper dive, visit the Mariana trench in a small sub like a shark…
    In both case use the arrow keys to drive your submarine.
    Note that at some depths the sub could disapear. It’s a bug of GE already passed to the development team.

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