Central Melbourne is a warren of 19th-century arcades and gritty-turned-hip cobbled blue- stone laneways featuring street art, basement restaurants, boutiques and bars. Start your tour by dropping onto street view at Degraves Place, an archetypal Melbourne lane lined with interesting shops, cafes and street art. Head north from Degraves Place to Flinders Lane, return to map view and explore the nearby Centre Place, a bustling hub of cafes and bars, using its photo spheres. Return to map and drop back onto Flinders Lane, head west, and then make a right hand turn onto Elizabeth Street. Continue north until you reach the Block Arcade. Built in 1892 and featuring ornate plasterwork and mosaic floors, it’s based on Milan’s Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II arcade. Return to map view and drop onto one of the arcades photo spheres to take a look.
Return to Elizabeth Street using street view, and navigate north, turning right at Little Collins Street. Navigating east along the street you’ll find the wonderfully ornate Royal Arcade on your left. Return to map view, and drop down onto the arcades photo sphere to look around. Return to Little Collins Street on street view, and continue east until you find a turning on your left to Union Lane Graffiti. Spend some time on its photo spheres to soak in the urban art. Return to Little Collins Street again on street view, continue east, and turn right onto Swanston Street. Move south, until you reach Melbourne Town Hall on your left. Drop onto a photo sphere in front of the hall and admire its impressive facade.
Return to map view, and drop onto Collins Street next to the town hall. Continue east along the street, and then turn right onto Russell Street. Continue south, and then turn left onto Flinders Lane. Continue east along the lane, and you’ll reach Duckboard Place on your right. Wander around using street view, taking in the plentiful urban art. Return to map view, and drop down to end the tour on Hosier Lane’s photo sphere, one of the city’s most epically decorated alleyways.
A mélange of historic buildings and skyscrapers, the center of Rio is an intriguing place to discover the essence of the city away from its beaches and mountains. Begin by dropping down onto a street view of the Praça Floriano, a scenic plaza set with several outdoor cafes. Navigate around at street level and take in the views. Proceed north along the Praça Floriano, until you reach the Municipal Theater of Rio de Janeiro, one of the city’s finest buildings, particularly after its $20 million renovation in 2009. Return to map view and drop onto a photo sphere facing the theatre to take in its grandeur.
Largo da Carioca – Rio de Janeiro
Giants’ clash, Largo da Carioca – Rio de Janeiro Marcos ©MartinezSanchez/Getty Images/iStockphoto
Return to map view, and drop down onto street view of Largo de Carioca, a bustling area with a small market. Wander around using street view. Facing north, you will be able to see the Igreja São Francisco da Penitência, a 17th‐century church with a jaw‐dropping gilded interior perched up on a hill. Return to map view, and drop onto Rua de Carioca. Navigate west along the road, until you reach a right hand turn onto Praça Tiradentes. Continue north on Av Passos, turning right onto R. Luis de Camores. Along this road on the left you’ll find the Real Gabinete Português de Leitura (Royal Portuguese Reading Room), a historic reading room reminiscent of 19th century Portugal. Return to map view, and drop onto one of its photo spheres to explore the book-lined interior.
Narrow street between buildings in busy commercial district downtown Rio de Janeiro at lunch time
The downtown space in Rio de Janeiro is very cramped and every square meter is very valuable ©Patrick Altmann/Getty Images
Return to map view, and drop down onto street view by Paço Imperial, once the seat of the Portuguese rulers in Brazil, the building today houses intriguing art exhibitions as well as several cafes. Spend some time exploring using street view. Navigate onto R. Primeiro de Marco, and work your way northwest, until you reach a righthand turn to Largo do Paço. Navigate east until you reach the Arco do Teles. Go through it, and you’ll finish your tour on Travessa do Comercio, one of the centro’s oldest and most charming lanes.