Explore the World from Home with These Virtual Adventures
While so many of us are holed-up at home, technology can help to bridge the gap between our front door and some of the world’s best outdoor adventures. Whether it’s an amusement park or a zoo, a museum tour or that outdoor hike, we’ve compiled some fantastic adventures you can experience from the comfort of your own home.
Ride Your Favorite Roller CoastersThe Walt Disney parks have only closed a handful of times, making their current closures and guest restrictions a pretty big deal. In the meantime, Disney and other major amusement parks are offering little glimpses into their parks even though they might be shut down.
Disney has made it possible to explore the happiest place on earth virtually through Google Street view, but you can also check out virtual rides on YouTube, including Space Mountain, Peter Pan's Flight and The Pirate’s of the Caribbean.
While Disney is known for its charm, it might not have the thrill you are looking for. Fortunately, many other roller coasters and rides are available virtually online.
- Kingda Ka is one of the world’s tallest roller coasters. Check out this POV video!
- Nothing says nostalgia like Coney Island. Check out this virtual view of The Coney Island Cyclone before the park (hopefully) reopens this summer.
- Cedar Point offers 18 virtual roller coaster rides! You can’t go wrong with any of them.
- Universal Studios is known for its exhilarating and entertaining rides. From the Hollywood Rip Ride Rockit to The Incredible Hulk, their channel offers countless ways to experience their parks.
- We know, The Wizarding World of Harry Potter is technically part of Universal Studios. But we think it deserves a place of its own. Go on a walking tour or enjoy a ride. The Escape from Gringotts is one of our favorites!
Tour the World’s Top MuseumsExploring the world’s most prestigious museums has never been easier and more affordable. Museums around the world have set up free virtual access to exhibits and tours.
Starting in New York City, take a peek into the Metropolitan Museum of Art. The Met has set up countless resources for quarantine-- we could spend all day exploring their virtual tours, 360-degree gallery views, art DIYs and talks. The Guggenheim, counted as one of UNESCO’s world heritage sites, has also set up virtual tours and galleries, including tours geared toward people with visual impairments.
You aren’t limited to NYC when it comes to show-stopping museums! The Smithsonian Museums are also open online, including the National Gallery. Head out west to the Getty in LA or check out the National Museum of Anthropology in Mexico City.
There are plenty of museums on the other side of the pond as well. The Louvre has three free tours, including a Mummy exhibit. In Ireland, you can tour the Blarney Castle.
Visit Local Zoos and AquariumsMany zoos and aquariums are offering live cam footage of many of their animal exhibits.
- Check out the PandaCam at the Atlanta Zoo.
- The San Diego Zoo lets you watch live cam footage of many of their animal exhibits as well, including pandas, giraffes, penguins, and tigers!
- The Clearwater Marine Aquarium is a rescue and rehabilitation center for marine life, most known for rescuing Winter the dolphin and providing her with a prosthetic tail as shown in the movie “Winter's Tale” with Morgan Freeman. You can watch Winter and other animals here.
- You need to check out the mesmerizing Jelly Cam from the Vancouver Aquarium!
Explore the OutdoorsStaying active is one of the best ways to try to stay sane during quarantine, along with a healthy dose of outdoor activity. And while we are all trying our best to go for walks around the neighborhood, most national and state parks are closed to help with social distancing, leaving many of us starved for nature. Many parks have virtual excursions for you to enjoy at home. The National Parks Service has set up virtual tours and live webcams for you to experience nature and educational exhibits.
Google’s Arts and Cultures website and app have an amazing feature called The Hidden Worlds of the National Parks. Here you can get high-quality footage of some of the toughest spots to reach but also the most beautiful, including Bryce Canyon, the Kenai Fjords in Alaska and the Dry Tortugas. Their photography and videography bring these parks to life making you feel like you’re (almost) there in person. They also have helpful guides pointing out features of the wildlife as you swim through a reef and climb down an icy crevasse. All in all, it makes for an exciting virtual adventure.
Let’s be real: most of us won’t be climbing the Himalayas anytime soon. Why not spend our time doing it virtually now? This map lets you virtually explore Everest and the surrounding regions. Not about virtual hiking? This may also be a good time to try out a virtual safari.
Immerse Yourself in Fine ArtsWhile there is nothing quite like seeing a live show, seeing it from the comfort of your own couch isn’t too bad either. Theaters and Opera houses have shut down but continue to provide amazing entertainment at no cost for people during quarantine. We are excited about:
- The Metropolitan Opera’s daily live stream of past performances
- The Globe Theatre’s collection of Shakespearean plays
- Andrew Lloyd Webber (the Phantom of the Opera) will be live streaming his shows each week.
There’s a Virtual Adventure for Everyone.
Traveling the world isn’t always possible, even when we aren’t social distancing, so now is a great time to learn a bit more about famous landmarks. One of the easiest ways to explore right now is through the use of the Google Arts and Culture Apps. From The Pyramids in Giza to the Taj Mahal, you will have high quality access to most major landmarks around the world.
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As we face this global pandemic, staying connected to the world is just as important as staying connected to one another. What better way to stay connected than exploration, even if it’s just from home? Stay safe while adventuring up Everest, through the Louvre or down virtual roller coaster tracks!