Yes, public spaces are closing again and events are being cancelled, but luckily many entities from all over the world have taken it upon themselves to offer free virtual tours’ You can be anywhere in the world just with a click of a button!
(NOTE: Many of these virtual tours require Flash Player.)
Google Arts and Culture
Google Arts and Culture is an online platform where you can easily visit literally any museum, heritage site, royal palace, historical place, or extreme location (such as Mount Everest and Antarctica) from all over the world. There you can view high-resolution images and videos of international artworks and cultural artifacts and feel as if you are standing right where you wish to be.
Google Arts and Culture has partnered with over 2,500 museums and galleries globally to offer you the opportunity of virtual tours of their spaces. Some of the options even include Amsterdam’s Van Gogh Museum! *can barely hold excitement*
You can either launch it from your browser or you can download “Google Arts and Culture” from Google Play or App Store.
Pro tip: The app allows you to find your fine art doppelganger by taking a selfie, then it matches your face to an old art museum portrait from Google’s database.
WindowSwap is a project made especially for quarantine that lets you use your browser to watch a 10-minute high-quality video of a window view from many places around the world. It gives you the experience of a unique view from different locations across the globe such as the relaxing, green landscape of Germany, or the urban busy streets of NYC.
It’s surprisingly easy to use Window Swap, because you don’t need to download any apps or subscribe to anything. All that you have to do is access the website from your browser, click the button right in the middle of the homepage, and enjoy a video of a window to gaze through. The videos are refreshed randomly whenever you click the button at the bottom of the screen.
N.B. Videos of windows can be submitted by anyone who wants to give people a new perspective in the world, so if you want others to know how it is to be looking from your window, get on and make your own video swap!
Check out WindowSwap here
The Travel Intern
Again, another easy-access website that is made by a group of enthusiastic storytellers, travelers, and explorers that don’t only offer virtual tours, but also help you plan your journey to the country you’re eager to visit.
While sitting on your couch and using just a screen, you can travel to the country on your bucket-list, or a city that you have been meaning to visit, but the odds haven’t been in your favor yet. However, to be honest with you, this website still hasn’t included ALL countries and cities of the world, but still, their virtual tours are stunning to watch.
Check it out here
If the previous wasn’t satisfying enough for you, Eye Revolution is here to offer you virtual tour to more distinct parts in the UK.
You don’t need to download any apps or subscribe, just use your browser to enter the website and happy touring!
You can find it here
This platform lets you enter a window of global tours of sightseeing, universities, restaurants, and more. This website is also user-friendly and no need for any downloads.
Start your tour here
Other museums that offer virtual tours on their own websites:
The Benaki Museum
Located in Greece, and features European and Asian pieces of artwork dating all the way back to prehistoric ages.
Check it out here
The Frick Collection
The once-mansion museum located on the Upper East Side in Manhattan, New York City. It’s named after Henry Clay Frick who originally built the mansion, and it holds collections of distinguished examples of European sculpture and decorative arts. From the comfort of your couch you can click your way through the website’s interactive map for a tour of the beautiful building and its collections of art of Bellini, Rembrandt, Vermeer, and more.
Find it here
The Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA)
LACMA is an art museum that was founded in 1961, splitting from the Los Angeles Museum of History, Science and Art. It’s located on Wilshire Boulevard in the Miracle Mile vicinity of Los Angeles, and is considered the largest art museum in the western states. On the website, you can watch videos and museum walkthroughs while listening to soundtracks and live recordings of the museum.
Check out the museum here
The world’s largest museum offers you to explore rare Egyptian artifacts, iconic paintings, and much more through their 360-degree viewing feature.
Start your tour at the Louvre here
The Museum of the World
The British Museum and Google Cultural Institute has teamed up to create one of the most impressive interactive projects, which is The Museum of the World. The museum’s digital art collection allows you to travel through time, starting with 2,000,000 BC, while admiring how each historical piece in the collection connects with the others. Just.. Wow!
Check out the British Museum here
The National Gallery
Located in London, the National Gallery lets you scroll your way around with its interactive tour options. The National Gallery holds hundreds of paintings in its collection, many of which are from the Renaissance period.
Find it here
The National Gallery of Art
Washington D.C.’s NGA has a wide variety of amazing virtual tours of their exhibitions. Just scroll down to choose the virtual tour you want and you’ll get in-depth looks at the best pieces of art of the gallery.
Check it out here
San Francisco Museum of Modern Arts
The San Francisco MoMA is offering you a #MuseumFromHome experience on their website with an exclusive content featuring artists and their work online.
Check out the MoMA here
The Vatican Museums
You can finally say you’ve seen the Sistine Chapel thanks to the virtual tour offered by the Vatican Museums. You can also virtually visit the Raphael Rooms, the Chiaramonti Museum, and more historic sites through these tours.
Start your tour here
The Great Wall of China
Trips all around the world are undoubtedly canceled, but a virtual tour of the Great Wall of China is available for anyone who has ever wanted to visit this wonder of the ancient world.
Visit the Great Wall of China here
Get Yourself to Mars
If you’re feeling more adventurous and international trips doesn’t give you a sufficient pleasure anymore, you can now take a virtual trip TO MARS. And no, we’re not bluffing. NASA has recently partnered with Google to offer a tour of a 3D replica of the Martian surface recorded by the Curiosity rover.
Click here to fly to Mars
Social distancing, travel planning, budgeting, and packing are all problems of the past. Now you can go anywhere in the world right from the comfort and warmth of your bed.