The View from Above

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A picture taken from one of the highest buildings in Istanbul shows the city covered with snow on Jan. 9, after heavy snowfall blanketed Turkey's commercial hub, paralyzing daily life and disrupting air traffic and land transport.

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The Grand Mosque in the holy city of Mecca, Saudi Arabia, on Aug. 6, 2012.

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The illuminated track for the Formula One Singapore Grand Prix night race in Singapore on Sept. 17, 2012.

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A gas and oil refinery in the early morning hours of July 30, in Bismarck, North Dakota.

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The Taim Ecological Station on fire in Rio Grande do Sul state, Brazil on March 27.

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Qatar's Nasser Al-Attiyah competes on Jan. 8 during Stage 4 of the Dakar 2013 race between Nazca and Arequipa, Peru.

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A musher competes on Jan. 18 in Megève, France during the departure of a stage of the Grande Odyssée sled dog race.

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Ice sheets float along the river Oder at the German-Polish border in Ratzdorf, Germany on Feb. 10.  

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An aerial view of Kora National Park in Kenya on Jan. 28.

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A view of Petare shantytown, east of Caracas, in Miranda, Venezuela, on Feb. 15, 2012

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A shot of the Grand Canyon in Arizona on July 1, taken from around 30,000 feet.

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The shadow of Air Force One carrying U.S. President Barack Obama flies over marshland while on approach to John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York on Sept. 24, 2012.

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A view of the Nevado del Tolima volcano in Colombia, taken through the porthole of a plane, on April 18.

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The Tromelin Island, a low, flat piece of land located in the Indian Ocean, on April 16.

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Planes belonging to the German airline companies Lufthansa and Air Berlin are parked at the Tegel Airport in Berlin, Germany on Aug. 1.

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Seasonal workers tend asparagus crops in a field near the town of Beelitz, in eastern Germany, on Apr. 19, 2012.

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Combine harvesters crop soybeans during a demonstration for the press in Campo Novo do Parecis, in Mato Grosso, Brazil, on March 27, 2012.

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Sao Paulo, Brazil on April 4.

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An olive tree orchard shot on Sept. 15, 2012 in Santa Rosa, California. 

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Mont Saint-Michel in Normandy, France on July 24.

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The Omar mountain development projects (on the right) next to a slum area in the holy city of Mecca, in Saudi Arabia, on Oct. 27, 2012.

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The village of Oudwoude, in the Netherlands, on Nov. 20, 2012.

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Crossing alleys near Schoenefeld, eastern Germany, on Sept. 4, 2012. The first alleys were planted more than 200 years ago.

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A soy bean field, in Campo Novo do Parecis, about 250 miles northwest of the capital city of Cuiaba, in Mato Grosso, Brazil, on March 27, 2012.

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The town of Coin and its surroundings, near Malaga in Adulusia, Spain, seen after a wildfire burned through the area, on Sept. 1, 2012.

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This shot, taken from an plane on Nov. 18, 2012, is of the Paro Airport in Paro, Bhutan. The country's only international airport, it is one of the most dangerous places in the world to make a landing. Only eight pilots are said to be able to land at the airport, which has a short runway and is surrounded by the Himalayan mountains.

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A desert landscape in Namibia.

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An Afghan landscape on Sept. 26, 2012.

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Snow-covered alpine mountains seen from a commercial flight on Feb. 21, 2012 in Zurich, Switzerland.

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