While people are on Earth, there are numerous satellites in space, taking pictures of towns, construction projects, island landscapes, wildfire destruction, and so much more.
To see what images have been captured over the years, beginning back in 1945 with the first satellite image, keep reading and prepared to be amazed.
A Neighborhood In Barcelona, Spain
While this image looks like a grid of red squares, it is actually a satellite image of a neighborhood in Barcelona, Spain. Famous for its stunning architecture, Barcelona, is home to the magical Sagrada Família church, designed by Catalan architect Antoni Gaudí.
Sadly, Gaudí passed away before he saw his creation completed.
Fiery Cross Reef In The South China Sea
This is an image of the Fiery Cross Reef, located in the South China Sea. The reef is not open to the public, though, as it is militarized by China.
Getting its name from the British tea ship Fiery Cross, a clipper ship that was wrecked on the reef back on March 4, 1860.
Crop Circles In The Desert Of Saudi Arabia
It might sound strange, crop circles in the middle of a desert, but that is exactly what is showcased in this satellite image. Located in the Wadi As-Sirhan Basin in Northern Saudi Arabia, the green circles are, in fact, crop circles!
Some of the crops grown in the otherwise barren desert include fruits, vegetables, and wheat.
Anak Krakatau Volcano In Indonesia
Anak Krakatau is a volcanic island located in the Sunda Strait in Indonesia, sitting between the islands of Java and Sumatra. An active volcano, Anak Krakatau, has erupted sporadically throughout the years, with its first recorded eruption happening in 1927.
The volcano has even been the subject of a tsunami due to a 2018 eruption causing mile-high waves.
Ocean Flower Island In China
Ocean Flower Island, located off the north coast of Danzhou, Hainan, China, is an artificial archipelago that cost a whopping $24 billion. Unfortunately, the construction of the island resulted in the destruction of coral reefs and oyster bays in the area.
Still, the questionable nature of the man-made island didn’t stop 200,000 visitors from venturing to the island on National Day in 2021.
The Large Junction Of The Place Charles De Gaulle
This image might look like a side of the Death Star in Star Wars, but it is actually a large junction in Paris, France, called The Place Charles de Gaulle.
The junction is the huge meeting of 12 straight avenues throughout the city, including the iconic Champs-Élysées, a street known for its theaters, cafes, and the finish line of the Tour de France.
Whitsun Reef In The South China Sea
The largest reef in the Union Banks, the Whitsun Reef in the South China Sea stretches in a funky V shape of 3.9 square miles.
Before the 1990s, the reef was submerged under the water, and only visible at low tide. By the end of the 20th century, small sand dunes developed on the island, making it visible during all hours of the day.
Central Park In New York City
New York City is called the concrete jungle for a very good reason — a vast majority of the landscape is nothing more than roads and sidewalks, with Central Park’s greenery covering 843 acres of Manhattan’s Upper East Sides.
While there are other small parks in the city, Central Park is by far the largest.
North Nilandhe Atoll, Maldives
Faafu Atoll, also known as North Nilandha Atoll in the Maldives, is not the typical honeymoon destination. This is an administrative island that governs the rest of the gorgeous island chain.
People might see the island from the water if they rent a boat for the day. Otherwise, visitors have no need to step foot on the land.
New York City At Night
The city that never sleeps, New York is home to over eight million people, all of who cover five boroughs.
From space, the satellite imagery captured the city at night, showing that its nickname is well deserved, with pretty much all of Manhattan lit up with gorgeous lights surrounded by the darkness of the Hudson River.
Nuclear Test Craters
This satellite image might look like a typical coral reef, but it is far from it. Looking closely, readers might notice the two large holes in the darker water.
These craters were created by an Enewetak Atoll nuclear test. The testing occurred during the Cold War and cost the United States a fortune to clean up.
The Coal Seam Fire In Glenwood Springs, Colorado
On June 8, 2002, the Coal Seam Fire raged through Glenwood Springs, Colorado, burning 29 homes and more than 12,000 acres of land. Residents of the area were evacuated for multiple days by local firefighters as they tried to get the fire under control.
It took weeks to put out the blaze.
Thermal Image Of The Carr Fire
Burning through Redding, California, from July 23, 2018, until August 30, 2018, the Carr Fire wound up burning 229,651 acres of land and destroying 1,604 buildings before it was contained.
The fire began due to the sparks of a tire failure from a vehicle. It cost more than $1.659 billion.
Chemtool Inc Industrial Fire In Chicago, Illinois
Installing a part in the scissor lift at the Chemtool Inc factory in Chicago, Illinois, resulted in a massively destructive fire on June 14, 2021.
In a statement, Rockton Fire Chief Kirk Wilson said, “an unknown amount of mineral oil immediately began falling and pooling on the floor in the area of origin…they were in the process of placing containment booms, as well as de-pressuring the heat transfer piping network when the fire ignited.”
The Arrival Of Hurricane Dorian In The Bahamas
The Bahamas are not strangers to massive hurricanes rolling through. On September 1, 2019, a satellite image captured the arrival of Hurricane Dorian to the island chain.
While in there, winds reached a whopping 175 miles per hour. Dorian was a category five hurricane and is on record as the most intense tropical cyclone to hit.
A Marina Being Constructed
While on the ground, it can be overwhelming to construct massive buildings for people who are not familiar with the inner workings of blueprints. Thankfully, satellite imagery makes it a bit easier for non-architects and designers to comprehend!
Here, a marina is being constructed, with numerous docks for boats to come in and out.
After The Woolsey Fire In Malibu, California
Starting on November 8, 2018, the Woolsey Fire ended up burning through 96,949 acres of land throughout Los Angeles and Ventura County in California.
This particular infra-red satellite image is the after-effects of Malibu, a community located right on the coast and on either side of the iconic Pacific Coast Highway.
The 2018 Burning Man Festival
Originating in 1983, the Burning Man festival attracts free spirits from all around. A festival of art and self-expression, the participants of the event design and build all of the activities throughout the weekend, the art displayed, and each event.
Each year, the festival is located in Black Rock Desert, Nevada.
A Factory Explosion Outside Of Bangkok
On July 5, 2021, a fire began at a plastic pellet manufacturing factory located on the outskirts of Bangkok, Thailand. Beginning at three in the morning, the explosion was so fierce that windows exploded in nearby homes.
The satellite image above shows the black smoke billowing from the factory building.
The Camp Fire In Paradise, California
All of the red in this satellite image is the fires from the Camp Fire in Paradise, California. The most destructive wildfire in the history of the state, the Camp Fire, started on Thursday, November 8, 2018, and burned through 153,336 acres.
The costliest natural disaster of 2018, the Camp Fire costs wracked up to $16.65 billion.