To switch to an external view sitting right behind that particular aircraft click on Camera. The view will change immediately:
You can directly switch between external views of planes by clicking their Camera button in the Aircraft List or open several A/C Info Windows in parallal and user their Camera button.
If you click Camera again (for the currently tracked plane), the view will return to what it was before.
In VR, the one Aircraft Info Window for the selected plane will follow you into the Camera view. Any other A/c info windows will stay in your cockpit. This one window cannot be closed because the only controlled way to return out of Camera view when in VR is to click Camera.
In non-VR, you could also just command X-Plane to show any other view of your choice by the usual menu or keyboard commands (see documentation). Tip: If you change to X-Plane's Free Camera view, e.g. by pressing [C], then you will basically stop the camera where it is right now and you see the plane moving away.
At the beginning, the camera sits on the plane's tail as shown above. But that can be changed using the same commands as in X-Planes Free Camera view allowing vistas like EK440 over Earth/Palm.
The following is a copy of table 5.1 from the X-Plane 11 manual:
Translate left, right, up, and down
Corresponding arrow key
Shifts the view a bit in the direction you choose
Translate fore and aft
‘,’ (aft) and ‘.’ (fore)
Shifts the view toward the front and rear of the aircraft, respectively
Rotate left, right, up, and down
‘q’ (left), ‘e’ (right), ‘r’ (up), and ‘f’ (down)
Spins the view in the corresponding direction
Zoom in and out
‘=’ (zoom in) and ‘-’ (zoom out)
All movements can be expedited by combining with the (shift) key.
The hat switch on your joystick has the same effect as the arrow keys: left/right/up/down.