Hitting the pause button on travel and staying home these days? No worries, we’ve got your dose of online entertainment right here.
Thanks to the Covid-19 pandemic, staying home is the new going out – can we get a ‘heck yeah’ from all the introverts out there? Soz if you’re a people person. Cutting back on your social life doesn’t have to be a chore, though. Home is where the heart is, and it’s full of amazing things for you to do.
Besides keeping fit, loading up on immunity-boosting superfoods, shopping online, bingeing your entire watch-list, and checking out all the deals and discounts on the island, you can easily explore the world without leaving your cosy couch. This type of travel is no-hassle, super safe and completely free – it’s all about screen time! So grab a glass of wine and settle in for the ride with virtual tours of popular museums, historic sites and even music performances.
Explore iconic landmarks
Palace of Versailles: Versailles, France
Billed as one of the most amazing achievements in French 17th century art, this majestic palace has been deemed a World Heritage Site for decades. The resplendent structure, a former hunting pavilion of Louis XIII, features 2,300 rooms and a jaw-dropping collection of Baroque art and architecture. Discover its exhibitions, hall of mirrors and gardens to view the country’s national gem in all its glory.
Great Wall of China: Beijing, China
The ancient wall, China’s most well-known attraction, is a tourist fave. But instead of hiking your way through more than 3,000 miles across multiple provinces, you can visit the striking site in your sweatpants, a bucket of popcorn in hand.
Sistine Chapel: Vatican City
A trip to Italy may be out of the question right now, but you can still pop by this city-state that’s home to the Pope. Skip the long lines, avoid the chaotic crowds and dive straight into the wonders of the Sistine Chapel to gaze at Michelangelo’s famous Renaissance paintings.
Buckingham Palace: London, UK
So you’ve just binge-watched The Crown. Now it’s time to embark on a virtual tour and see the palace in all its grandeur, from the White Drawing Room to the Throne Room, complete with fascinating nuggets of info on standout pieces of decor.
Blarney Castle: Cork, Ireland
The St. Patricks’ Day tradition of kissing the Blarney Stone has ground to a halt due to the Covid-19 pandemic, but you can still get up close to the legendary medieval site from the safety of your home. Built about 600 years ago, the famed attraction is one of Ireland’s coolest, and you can be privy to its myth and magic by exploring its grounds on a cool virtual tour.
The White House: Washington, DC, USA
Here’s a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to (kind of) step into the Oval Office. Home to one of the world’s most powerful leaders, the centuries-old White House is open for hangouts. You can traipse through certain sections (like the Eisenhower Executive Office Building) and marvel at the art and decor on display or head outdoors to view the building’s famous facade.
Get your dose of art and culture
Louvre Museum: Paris, France
A must-see site in Paris, this French treasure is the world’s largest of its kind, with an excellent collection stashed away in its Baroque-style space. While you’re on a virtual tour of the museum, look out for Egyptian antiquities, the remains of the original moat and more.
Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History: Washington, DC, USA
So you’ve always wanted to spend a night at the museum? Now you can. The natural world is all yours to explore, with myriad collections on flora and fauna, plus those impressive dinosaur fossils.
Guggenheim Museum: New York City, USA
Thanks to Google Street View, you can go on a virtual tour around the building’s iconic spiral staircase without huffing and puffing your way up. These artworks span across the Impressionist, Modern and Contemporary eras.
British Museum: London, UK
Since its beginnings in 1753, the museum has amassed over two million years’ worth of artefacts from human history, including noteworthy items like the Rosetta Stone, Egyptian mummies and Parthenon sculptures. Check out its extensive collection on art and design, power and identity, religion and belief, and loads more through the decades.
Acropolis Museum: Athens, Greece
Dig into archaeology in Greece, and you’ll uncover fascinating finds from the site of the Arcopolis in Athens. Artefacts from the Greek Bronze Age to Byzantine Greece can be viewed here if you’re into prehistoric sculptures.
Musée d’Orsay: Paris, France
Curious about French art? These paintings, sculptures, furniture and photography pieces date back to the 1800s, with Impressionist and post-Impressionist artworks by the likes of Monet, Degas, Renoir, Sisley and Van Gogh.
National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art: South Korea
Since 1969, the museum has expanded to four locations across the country, including one in Seoul. If you’re all about that art and culture experience, you’ll love delving into design, architecture, crafts and more in the museum’s first-rate collections.
Van Gogh Museum: Amsterdam, The Netherlands
As its name suggests, this place is a must-see for all fans of Vincent van Gogh, as it features more than 200 paintings, 500 drawings and 750 letters. Dip your toes into the artist’s treasure trove of Post-Impressionism, Modern and Neo-Impressionism works.
The graffiti mystery master has been creating works on the streets for decades, and if you haven’t tracked ‘em down yet, here’s an easy way to do it. Thanks to Google Street View, you can catch sight of 12 iconic artworks including the Falling Shopper in London, the Mild Mild West in Bristol, Umbrella Girl in New Orleans and more.
Tune in to music
Vienna State Opera: Vienna, Austria
Life may have come to a standstill, but the music goes on. Just stream the Vienna State Opera’s latest performances and host your own solo classy soiree at home. Each day brings a different opera, and the best part is, it’s all free.
Metropolitan Opera: New York City, USA
More free opera streams coming your way, thanks to the Met. Refreshing each day, the line-up includes past productions like Puccini’s La Boheme for your me-time treat.
The Social Distancing Festival
Trying times like these call for a little tongue-in-cheek fun, and that’s where this aptly-named festival comes in. Set up by a playwright from Toronto, it’s not an actual event; it’s more of a gathering of various live streams and performances for your viewing pleasure. You’ll find everything from storytelling sessions and poetry slams to theatre productions and concerts just one click away.