These images only look like they are of miniature models—these photographs are actually of real life places!
They are created with a technique called tilt-shift, a really cool effect for still photography. It is a method of changing the lens of a camera to give it a very limited depth of field.
In still photographs, the effects of this camera technique can be fascinating. It makes it appear as the real world has changed into that of the Lilliputians. But put the effect into a time-lapse movie, and it is spell-binding.
Tilt-Shift miniature faking is a creative technique whereby a photograph of a life-size location or object is manipulated to give an optical illusion of a photograph of a miniature scale model. Altering the focus of the photography in Photoshop (or similar program) simulates the shallow depth of field normally encountered with macro lenses making the scene seem much smaller than it actually is. (tiltshiftphotography.net)