Friday, January 31, 2014 at 1:41 PM
With the eyes of winter sports fans turning to Russia, we thought this would be a good time to add more towns, cities and picturesque sights of this sprawling country to Google Maps. From today, Street View is available in Vladivostok, Yakutsk, Irkutsk and, of course, Sochi.
Winter lovers also are treated, for the first time, to images of mountainous Slovenia. This gorgeous Central European country becomes our 55th country to launch Street View.
Map of some of the newly available areas to explore in Russia
In Russia, our drivers reached the far away corners of the world's largest country. Users can take a walk around Yakutsk, the city with the greatest seasonal temperature swings on Earth (the lowest recorded winter temperature was −64.4°C with the highest summer peak hitting 38.4°C).
Explore the city center of Yakutsk
The mapping team faced unusual challenges. When taking imagery of the Tobolsk monastery the drivers spent two days praying with the Monastery Abbot. In order to get to some remote spots, Street View cars were transported in containers on tracks and boats. There was even place for romance: while shooting Sakhalin, one driver met his future wife!
The Tobolsk Monastery in Tyumen Oblast
Congress Square, Ljubljana