In the olden days, the ancients recognised Seven Wonders of the World; but thanks to Google Earth, you can now spot thousands of "I wonder what it is" head scratchers. Among the new wonders: a 1-square-mile painting of a cowboy's head, a giant cruise ship parked between skyscrapers, and places that look, well, not of this world.

Here we've collected some of the strangest sights in Google Earth, and we've included the coordinates next to each so you can cut and paste them into Google Earth's 'Fly To' box.

All-seeing cat's eye

Standing in front of China's Beijing South Railway Station must be impressive, but seeing it from the perspective of the Google Earth satellite is cool, too (39°51'50.35"N, 116°22'21.78"E). From above, this ultramodern railway station looks like a cat's eye. For larger-than-life architectural finds, nothing beats Google Earth for getting a grand perspective - be it the 350-foot Atomium (50°53'41"N 4°20'28"E) in Brussels, Belgium, or Dubai's Burj Al Arab (25° 8'30.90"N, 55°11'4.76"E), the world's tallest freestanding hotel.

Is this Planet Earth?

This aerial shot of an Algerian desert (31° 7'45.56"N, 7°56'23.12"E) looks like something taken by a satellite orbiting Mars. The stunning alien-like landscape has inspired some Google Earth daydreamers to spot images of girl's face (31°15'14.82"N, 7°53'12.10"E) or a tree (30°56'55.41"N, 7°52'51.37"E) between the wavy sandy crevasses. Think Algeria looks other-worldly? Try these mud flats (39.094361,83.596134) found in a remote part of Sinkiang, China, and this beadlike tableau (17°25'42.01"N, 6°38'30.39"E) in the Agadez region of Niger, where salt production has created odd formations in the landscape.

NEXT PAGE: One square mile of 'Cowboy Country'

  1. Strange sights
  2. One square mile of 'Cowboy Country'
  3. One nation under chicken
  4. Car tipping
  5. Satellite tourist
  6. Out-of-this-world art
  7. I Heart Google Earth
  8. Parched lips

Mapping software Google Earth turns the planet into a massive scavenger hunt for weird, wacky, and the unexplained. Here are a few of the things that keep us scratching our heads.

One square mile of 'Cowboy Country'

The artist Ando doesn't just think big - he thinks humongous. Using one square mile of Australian Outback as his canvas, Ando 'painted' a picture of a cowboy into the landscape. Called Mundi Man or Eldee Man, it is located on the Mundi Plains in Australia (31°40'37.11"S, 141°14'23.68"E) and is meant to represent the people who pioneered in the region. The image here has been colour-adjusted for clarity. And could this be the cowboy's footprint (51.294076,-1.534722) or his thumbprint (50.844,-0.172043)?

Planes, jets and missiles

Whether parked, crashed, or flying, planes are among the most sought-after and collected finds in Google Earth. Here is the mammoth plane graveyard at Davis-Monthan Air Force Base (32° 9'1.75"N, 110°49'56.57"W) in Tucson, Arizona. You might ask, why should a good plane go to waste? Some people agree with you - like these people (45°24'28.71"N, 123° 0'28.23"W) who live in Washington state and couldn't bear to see perfectly good Boeing 727 go to waste: They made a home out of it.

NEXT PAGE: One nation under chicken

  1. Strange sights
  2. One square mile of 'Cowboy Country'
  3. One nation under chicken
  4. Car tipping
  5. Satellite tourist
  6. Out-of-this-world art
  7. I Heart Google Earth
  8. Parched lips

Mapping software Google Earth turns the planet into a massive scavenger hunt for weird, wacky, and the unexplained. Here are a few of the things that keep us scratching our heads.

One nation under chicken

If alien visitors happen to land in Rachel, Nevada, don't be surprised if they think Colonel Sanders is our leader. That town has an 87,500-square-foot image of the smiling Colonel (37°38'47.40"N, 115°45'1.27"W) composed of 65,000 one-foot-square tiles, according to reports. This KFC logo is part of a larger trend called mapvertising, in which companies create product logos that are visible from space (or from planes landing at Chicago O'Hare Airport (42° 0'28.67"N, 87°53'9.89"W).

A mall that's ready for the next flood

A dry-docked skiff is one thing, but a cruise ship parked between skyscrapers in the middle of a city is quite another (22°18'14.15"N, 114°11'24.66"E). This ocean liner is known by locals as Whompoa Boat and doubles as a shopping mall in downtown Hong Kong

NEXT PAGE: Car tipping

  1. Strange sights
  2. One square mile of 'Cowboy Country'
  3. One nation under chicken
  4. Car tipping
  5. Satellite tourist
  6. Out-of-this-world art
  7. I Heart Google Earth
  8. Parched lips

Mapping software Google Earth turns the planet into a massive scavenger hunt for weird, wacky, and the unexplained. Here are a few of the things that keep us scratching our heads.

Car tipping

You've probably heard of cow tipping, but what about car tipping? To judge from this photo, a dearth of cows in the Netherlands has inspired people to begin tipping parked cars instead (51°19'18.13"N, 6°34'35.64"E) (see it in Google Maps).

Conquering the Earth

Need an island, but can't find one to buy? Why not build one? That appears to be the philosophy behind islands being built in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, in the shape of palm trees crowned with crescents. This image shows one (25° 7'2.64"N, 55° 7'59.28"E) of three identical Palm Islands being built from an estimated 500,000 cubic metres of rock and sand. Google Earth offers a unique way to explore this island, serving up a high-resolution map where you can wander the island's 100 luxury hotels, water parks, and lavish homes.

NEXT PAGE: Satellite tourist

  1. Strange sights
  2. One square mile of 'Cowboy Country'
  3. One nation under chicken
  4. Car tipping
  5. Satellite tourist
  6. Out-of-this-world art
  7. I Heart Google Earth
  8. Parched lips

Mapping software Google Earth turns the planet into a massive scavenger hunt for weird, wacky, and the unexplained. Here are a few of the things that keep us scratching our heads.

Satellite tourist

Visiting breathtaking landmarks such as the Roman Coliseum (41°53'26.44"N, 12°29'31.17"E) in person is the best way to see them. (Shown in the inset at bottom left is a Google Street View of the Roman Coliseum - another alternative for virtual globetrotters.) But if your budget and schedule don't permit it, Google Earth may just have to do. The good news for virtual tourists is that Google has updated its coverage of many of the world's most popular destinations with high-resolution images that make an Internet trip to the Grand Canyon (36.102966,-112.091532 ), the Great Wall of China (40°21'15.86"N, 116° 0'25.31"E), and Eiffel Tower (48°51'29.47"N, 2°17'40.26"E) (see it in Google Maps) [zoom to image] as enjoyable as possible.

Military Mysteries

What's the purpose of the mammoth designs painted onto the floor of a Chinese desert? (40°27'4.87"N, 93°44'42.90"E). Perhaps only the Chinese military knows. That's who some people speculate is behind several (40°27'23.66"N, 93°23'7.78"E) similar mile-wide paintings. A nearby Stonehenge-looking formation (40°27'31.04"N, 93°18'47.21"E) with three jets parked in the middle suggests a possible military purpose to the enterprise. But giant white lines etched into the Earth are not unique to just China. A mysterious pattern of white lines found in Norwich, UK (52.481725, 0.520627) has prompted some Fox Mulder fans to say 'I want to believe'.

NEXT PAGE: Out-of-this-world art

  1. Strange sights
  2. One square mile of 'Cowboy Country'
  3. One nation under chicken
  4. Car tipping
  5. Satellite tourist
  6. Out-of-this-world art
  7. I Heart Google Earth
  8. Parched lips

Mapping software Google Earth turns the planet into a massive scavenger hunt for weird, wacky, and the unexplained. Here are a few of the things that keep us scratching our heads.

Out-of-this-world art

Instead of working with paint brushes and canvases, some artists use bulldozers and backhoes to create art. In their 1997 desert installation called Desert Breath (27°22'50.10"N, 33°37'54.62"E), artists Danae Stratou, Alexandra Stratou, and Stella Constantinides created two interlocking spirals that stretch almost 0.25 miles from side to side in the Egyptian desert. The inset images on the left are from DanaeStratou.com and show Desert Breath just after it was completed and before the installation was ravaged by wind, rain, and time.

Hell on Earth

This satellite view of what CBS news called 'hell on earth' in a 60 Minutes exposé is as close as you might want to get to the beach of Bhatiari, Bangladesh (22°26'4.44"N, 91°43'46.32"E), where hundreds of cashiered luxury liners and no-longer-useful cargo ships come to die and be dismembered. What you can't see in this satellite snapshot are the thousands of workers who get paid a dollar a day to toil in the heat and toxic boat waste salvaging steel, copper, and ship parts. The inset image on the right of the slide is from Flickr user naquib. And speaking of maritime graveyards, here is where the US Navy mothballs some of its fleet near Benicia, California (38° 3'55.21"N 122° 6'15.96"W).

See also: 23 strange sights Google Street View

NEXT PAGE: I Heart Google Earth

  1. Strange sights
  2. One square mile of 'Cowboy Country'
  3. One nation under chicken
  4. Car tipping
  5. Satellite tourist
  6. Out-of-this-world art
  7. I Heart Google Earth
  8. Parched lips

Mapping software Google Earth turns the planet into a massive scavenger hunt for weird, wacky, and the unexplained. Here are a few of the things that keep us scratching our heads.

I heart Google Earth

How does Mother Earth show her love for Google Earth? With heart-shaped islands (43°58'42.70"N, 15°23'0.14"E) , ponds (52°15'27.48"N, 10°31'17.62"E), and botanical enigmas (20°56'15.47"S, 164°39'30.56"E) of course. How do mere mortals show their love for Google Earth? We etch our devotion into Mother Earth via heart-shaped designs (48°53'26.45"N, 12°30'36.01"E), of which there are plenty.

Extremely high resolution

Since Google Earth debuted in 2005, the satellite images accessible through the mapping software have got sharper. Sometimes you can be caught off guard by stunningly crisp images of random things. Here is an image of a park in Sebastopol, California, where people are lounging on the grass and others are lining up for lunch (38°24'40.50"N, 122°50'25.42"W) to see this image on the resulting map, move the slider bar all the way to the highest magnification, next to the + label). What gives? According to unconfirmed reports, this is a meeting of Foo Camp, an annual hacker conference sponsored by O'Reilly Media.

Another seemingly random high-resolution image captures a lonely Land Rover driving through a Moroccan desert (27°56'25.44"N, 12°17'28.15"W). Other spectacular high-resolution images, like these pyramids located outside of Cairo, Egypt (29°58'44.64"N, 31° 7'54.60"E), don't leave you wondering, 'What's the story behind this image?'

See also: 23 strange sights Google Street View

NEXT PAGE: Parched lips

  1. Strange sights
  2. One square mile of 'Cowboy Country'
  3. One nation under chicken
  4. Car tipping
  5. Satellite tourist
  6. Out-of-this-world art
  7. I Heart Google Earth
  8. Parched lips

Mapping software Google Earth turns the planet into a massive scavenger hunt for weird, wacky, and the unexplained. Here are a few of the things that keep us scratching our heads.

Parched lips

Eat your heart out, Angelina Jolie. These lips may not be as famous as Jolie's but they're bigger. This geological find (12°22'13.32"N, 23°19'20.18"E) is located in Gharb, Darfur, in Sudan. To earthbound locals, the landmass is just another nondescript hill that's 0.5 mile long.

When things go wrong

With Google's unblinking satellite eye trained on us, it's bound to capture things as they happen. Here in Frankfurt, Germany, you can spot a house fire (50° 2'16.46"N, 8°14'29.01"E). Here is another of a car accident and massive traffic snarl (51° 4'47.89"N, 6°59'17.70"E ) in Germany. Off the coast of Sudan, you get a good view of a Bolivian cargo ferry, the SS Jassim, that ran aground and capsized (19°38'46.58"N, 37°17'42.19"E).

See also: 23 strange sights Google Street View

  1. Strange sights
  2. One square mile of 'Cowboy Country'
  3. One nation under chicken
  4. Car tipping
  5. Satellite tourist
  6. Out-of-this-world art
  7. I Heart Google Earth
  8. Parched lips