Video of the Day – Journey through Asia

If you have 4 minutes to spare and a virtual tour through Thailand, Cambodia, & Vietnam strikes your fancy; sit back and enjoy this beautiful montage from filmmaker Ivan Vania.

Shot with a Canon 5D Mark II and set to a soundtrack by Yann Tiersen (composer of the score for Amélie), it’s an incredibly vivid depiction of the boat rides, temples, smiles, and landscapes that many travelers to Southeast Asia are familiar with. Ivan does a great job of mixing wide angle shots of the environment with close ups that capture the detail of the locations and the expressions of the people he encountered, which adds to the video’s realism and authenticity.

Do you have a favorite video or photo that lets you escape to another part of the world at the click of a button? Share it with us! Leave a comment below and it could be our next Photo / Video of the Day.

Take a virtual tour of the Sistine Chapel

Seeing the Vatican’s Sistine Chapel is a hassle. It’s constantly mobbed, you’re not allowed to take pictures (unlike the sneaky photographer on the right) and you have to walk through a maze of rooms to reach it. But the minute you gaze up at the beauty of this Michelangelo masterpiece, all the pains of getting there evaporate. Now there’s a totally new way to view this stunning masterwork without all the fuss, courtesy of the Internet and some high resolution photography.

The Sistine Chapel Virtual Tour offers web-surfers the pleasure of exploring this oft-packed wonder all by themselves, all rendered in gorgeous detail. You’re free to zoom in on the most minute details of the frescoes, examining them up close in a way never before possible. To help get you in a properly pious mood, your Virtual Sistine tour is also accompanied by the sound of an ethereal chorus (get your mute button ready if you’re not a fan of choirs). As you spin your cursor in circles around the room, you literally feel like you were there.

Thanks to technology, everyone can now get up close and personal with this amazing landmark. Best of all, there’s nobody around to yell at you if you try to take a photo…

[Via Buzzfeed]

Virtual Tour aboard the Trans-Siberian

The trans-Siberian is one of the world’s epic journeys.

This six-day jaunt from Moscow to Vladivostok covers eight time zones and nearly a quarter of the globe’s surface. Riding it the entire distance is something which every one should do once in their life.

As a motivation to do so, Russian Railways has put together a rather cool interactive journey on their website.

The flash display begins at the train station in Moscow where visitors can look up and down the tracks before stepping into the first or second class carriage. Virtual passengers can then check out the cabins, the dining car, and various features throughout the train–such the TV in first class. The toilet, which is shared for a week with other passengers, can only be partially glimpsed through an open door. This is probably a good thing. As you might imagine, this nasty room was the low point of my journey a number of years ago.

The site is very cool and I highly recommend checking it out if you are planning a trip on the trans-Siberian any time soon. But keep in mind, the train featured is the Rossiya. If you book another train, things might not be as nice. But, you’ll love it anyway.