Virtual explorers can now discover and watch YouTube videos while they traverse the globe. Starting today, a YouTube layer will be available in the Featured Content folder of Google Earth.

The new layer enables users to zoom in on any location on the planet and view YouTube videos related to that place. For example, a trip to Maui offers videos of surfing, snorkeling and exotic sea life, while users who fly to Chamonix-Mont Blanc, France, can watch breathtaking videos filmed at the highest points of the Alps.

The integration of YouTube functionality into Google Earth offers a new way to experience destinations as seen through the eyes of YouTube users who have visited them, enabling people to watch, hear and feel what's happening in locations they may never have otherwise visited.

For instance, armchair tourists to Rome can now watch YouTube videos filmed at the Colosseum, providing a holistic experience and adding a new perspective for users who enjoy looking at the Colosseum and other noteworthy locations from above through satellite imagery, as 3D buildings created with SketchUp, and in user-contributed photos uploaded to Panoramio.