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  • Audio Slideshows

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    Narrated by experts in their fields, the slideshows combine stories, music and images giving you a new way to explore the world from the air.

  • Coasts

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    Almost 40% of the world’s population lives within 100km of the coast. Discover how people interact with diverse coastal environments.

  • Dams

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    Dams are some of the largest man-made structures. Find out how we use these engineering marvels to harness the power of rivers.

  • Mountains

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    Mountain ranges are the most distinctive landforms visible from the air. Discover some of Earth's highest, longest, oldest and most spectacular.

  • Natural Wonders

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    Discover some of nature’s most unusual events, creations and formations that can be found across the globe and find out why they exist.

  • Sacred Landscapes

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    Many cultures assign holy significance to the landscape around them; uncover some of the world’s most sacred sites and the people who worship them.

  • Colonial Arrivals

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    Explore the colonial history of some of the world’s greatest port cities and the roles the individual colonialists and explorers played.

  • Islands

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    Thousands of islands, large and small, dot our planet’s seas; find out the different ways in which they were formed, from volcanoes to coral.

  • Natural Resources

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    Gathering valuable resources such as metals, chemicals or water has led to communities developing in areas that might otherwise seem inhospitable.

  • Energy

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    We consume more energy now than ever before – find out where this fuel comes from and how it is harnessed across the globe.

  • Farming and agriculture

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    Food is one of our most basic human needs: discover how farming and agriculture differ across the varied cultures and climates of our world.

  • Cities

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    Over half the world’s population live in cities: discover how these settlements were established and learn why they are of modern global importance.

  • Volcanoes

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    Explore the world's diverse volcanic landscapes, from the effects of eruptions to the millions of people who live in the shadow of volcanoes.

  • Road and rail transport

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    Roads and railways have acted as a catalyst for expansion, communication and development. Explore their influences across the world.

  • Caves and rock paintings

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    Huge networks of caves and caverns hold some of the oldest and least explored physical, natural and human environments on the planet.

  • Legends and Mythology

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    Myths and legends have been used for centuries to help different cultures make sense of how the world around them came to be.

Vancouver to Los Angeles

The west coast of the United States is littered with active volcanoes, sheer mountains and dramatic pine filled valleys. As well as providing spectacular scenery, these features are also key pieces of evidence that help us understand the geological history of this region.

Some of the USA’s most famous and iconic scenery sits beneath the flight path: Yosemite National Park in the Sierra Nevada, for example, is a classic example of the romanticised American West. Further north the active volcanoes of the Cascade Mountains, such as Mount St. Helens, remind us that even the most powerful nations can be humbled by Earth’s natural processes.

However, humans have also played an increasingly involved role in this landscape: from the Native Americans who first inhabited the region, to the immigrant pioneers who settled in the mid-18th Century, to the extreme sports enthusiasts who now use it as their playground.

Explore the flight path
from Vancouver to Los Angeles
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© 2014 Royal Geographical Society (with IBG)