Petra, Jordan, is a city to be marveled. It's a place in harmony with nature, and it reminds us how human ingenuity can help people thrive in the most adverse conditions. Now, everyone with an Internet connection can explore this and more than 30 other sites in Jordan on Google Street View.

“Thanks to Google Street View, we can now share the rich, proud, and varied history of our country with anyone who has an Internet connection,” Her Majesty Queen Rania Al Abdullah of Jordan wrote in a blog post. “With more than 30 historical sites available to explore virtually, people all over the world now have a window into our beautiful Kingdom in the heart of the Middle East.” 

Petra is just one more addition to Google Maps Treks program, which allows users to “journey beyond the road,” according to the company's slogan. Past projects have brought people inside the Kennedy Space Center and under the water to explore the Great Barrier Reef. Many other iconic cities and spaces where roads cannot go have made their way into the Trek program from walking along the canals of Venice to climbing The Nose of El Capitan in Yosemite National Park.

It's this kind of growth and sharing in our fabric of knowledge that helps us understand our world better.

“I look at the phenomenon called Google Earth and how the Googlers have stepped up and not only used this wonderful format, Google Earth to inform people about what is happening on the land, but now to fill out the ocean,” says oceanographer Sylvia Earle.

Queen Rania Al Abdullah of Jordan believes this technology will help connect and inform millions about Jordan's past and present. “And when we understand more about each other’s stories and cultures and histories, we realize that we are more alike than we are different. That’s why we must preserve these treasures for future generations. They’re a doorway to our shared narrative.”

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Image credits:

  • NAMCHE BAZAR, NEPAL - MAY 23: Thamserku (C) is in view May 23, 2003 from Namche Bazar in the Solu Khumbu (Everest) region in Nepal. (Photo by Paula Bronstein/Getty Images)
  • French engineer Luc Vincent, in charge of all the imagery in Google's online maps, walks holding the custom-made panoramic camera that has made Google's Street View possible, on April 25, 2014, in Paris. AFP PHOTO / FRED DUFOUR (Photo credit should read FRED DUFOUR/AFP/Getty Images)
  • Elephants ford the Ewaso Nyiro river in Samburu game reserve on May 8, 2013. AFP PHOTO/Carl de Souza (Photo credit should read CARL DE SOUZA/AFP/Getty Images)

Natalie has been writing professionally for about 6 years. After graduating from Ithaca College with a degree in Feature Writing, she snagged a job at PCMag.com where she had the opportunity to review all the latest consumer gadgets. Since then she has become a writer for hire, freelancing for various websites. In her spare time, you may find her riding her motorcycle, reading YA novels, hiking, or playing video games. Follow her on Twitter: @nat_schumaker