The world can now explore London in greater detail from a computer screen, as Google Maps today launches 3D mapping of the capital.

The online mapping experts were able to recreate the entire city in 3D using 45-degree aerial imagery. Famous landmarks such as Parliament, the Shard and Tower Bridge can be seen in stunning detail, with computer users able to pan around the iconic buildings for a complete view.

St Paul's Cathedral Credit: Google Maps

The 3D images also allow London's famous sky line to be shown in its full glory, giving viewers a true impression of the capital's tallest and most treasured buildings.

Aerial view looking along the River Thames Credit: Google Maps

An aerial shot shows how built-up the city is with homes and offices, punctuated with spires, skyscrapers and more unusually-shaped buildings such as the Gherkin and the "walkie-talkie" tower.

The City of London and The Shard Credit: Google Maps

Using 45-degree aerial imagery, we're able to recreate entire metropolitan areas in 3D. This means every building, not just the famous landmarks, the terrain, and any surrounding landscape of trees are included to provide a much more accurate and realistic experience of the city. As you zoom into London on Google Maps or Google Earth, buildings and terrain will start to appear in 3D. Once you can see the buildings, pan, zoom, tilt and rotate to explore the 3D environment.

The London Eye Credit: Google Maps

London is the fifth city in the UK to be represented in 3D after Birmingham, Leeds, Reading and Stoke on Trent.