Being at home doesn’t mean you have to stop travelling. You can still explore the world without leaving the house. This time is not a time to forgo the things that make travel great and loved by many. Now is the time to embrace them even harder than before. You can still learn about new cultures. You can still see landmarks in cities on your travel bucket list. And you can still travel. It’s just the travel will have to be virtual (or in print) for now. Over these last few weeks, I’ve seen some fantastic ways you can see the world. So I wanted to share some of my absolute favourites. So here are just some of the great ways you can explore the world without leaving the house.
Travel Magazines and Blogs
A great way to travel the world without leaving the house is to do so using someone else’s experiences. Ever wanted to learn more about Stockholm’s colourful subway system? Or where the best spot to grab a bite to eat in New York City? There are hundreds of articles and travel blogs out there just waiting to be read. And now more than ever do they need your support. Some of my favourite travel publications online that I love to get inspiration from include National Geographic Traveller, Wanderlust and Lonely Planet. To name just a few. And that’s not even including the tonnes of travel blogs I read each week.
Image Credit: Screenshot from StorySpheres
Many national parks, galleries and museums have virtual tours available on their websites. Many of which have been available for a long while, but have now become an essential part of travelling virtually for those at home. It’s also a great tool to plan a future trip to these places too. But these virtual tours don’t have to be to a far-flung destination, it could be to a national park right on your doorstep. You’ll find virtual tours and webcam footage on Google Earth, national park websites and other outlets. So if there is somewhere that’s always been on your travel bucket list, have a little look online and you may be lucky enough to find a virtual tour. Here are some of my absolute favourites:
- The Giant’s Causeway, Northern Ireland- Head to the National Trusts Giant’s Causeway page for a virtual tour of this stunning natural landmark
- Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park- Visit the sacred site of Uluru in Australia’s Northern Territory, with the help of StorySpheres. See the site from various viewpoints whilst listening to traditional songs too.
- Yosemite National Park, USA- This has been on my bucket list forever and it was great to find out about VirtualYosemite. They have tonnes of different videos from various locations around the national park.
- Sydney, Australia- There’s not a day that goes by where I don’t miss Sydney. So getting to explore the city once again thanks to the likes of YouVisit makes me especially happy.
Museum Views with Google Arts & Culture
Image Credit: Screenshot from Google Arts & Culture
In the same vein as above, many art galleries and museum around the world are opening their (virtual) doors and providing online tours with the help of Google Arts & Culture. There are over three thousand museums and galleries listed online and you can start to explore in just a few clicks. All you need to do is head to the Google Arts and Culture website and begin exploring the museums and galleries listed. We’re talking about the likes of The Natural History Museum in London, the Acropolis Museum in Athens, New York’s Metropolitan Museum of Art, The British Museum and Australian National Surfing Museum.
Webcams at Tourist Destinations
Image Credit: Screenshot from English Heritage’s Skyscape
Many tourist sites around the world are closed to visitors, but there’s nothing stopping you visiting them online. All thanks to the use of webcams! Pick a destination and its a famous landmark and see if a webcam is available to watch. It’s crazy to see some of the sites that are usually packed full of people empty. Of you’re looking for some recommendations these are some of my favourites:
- Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary, Australia- Watch live videos from Brisbane’s Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary. These include videos from the Koala Forest and the platypus enclosure.
- Stonehenge, UK- English Heritage have created Skyscape. A fantastic live view of Stonehenge and the skies above!
- Sumburgh Head, Shetland- Listen to the crashing of the waves against the cliffs using Shetland Webcams. Keep your eyes peeled for a glimpse of a puffin!
- Trevi Fountain, Italy- Skyline Webcams have a great selection of webcams set up at famous sites across Europe, including Rome’s Trevi Fountain. Having visited this site many years ago it’s eerie to see the area so quiet when it’s once of the landmarks I come across during my travels.
Your travel over the next few weeks or months doesn’t just have to be virtual. They can be within the pages of a book too. Whether you take to learning about a new city or country using a travel guide book, or diving into travel writers accounts of that destination you’ve always wanted to visit, don’t underestimate the power of words. You don’t always have to see something to learn from it and travel there.
These are just a few ways that you can explore the world without leaving the house. You may find some of these suggestions better than others. And that’s ok, cause everyone travels differently. And there will be many different virtual travel styles to discover over these next few months I’m sure. How are you finding ways to explore the world without leaving the house? I’d love to get your suggestions too!
Until next time.