Summer break trip canceled? While most of the world is still reopening in phases, that doesn’t mean you can’t explore the globe from the comfort of your own home. If you’re looking to embrace your wanderlust spirit, keep scrolling to see some amazing ways to take a virtual vacation––all without leaving your house.
Great Wall of China
The China Guide has opportunities for you to walk the Great Wall of China without leaving the comfort of your couch.
Great Barrier Reef
Explore the Great Barrier Reef with David Attenborough.
Monuments, Museums & Historic Sites
Google Arts and Culture allows users to explore iconic monuments, museums and other historic sites.
The United States
The National Trust for Historic Preservation allows visitors to experience historic places and important events in American history without leaving their homes.
Visit the Frist Art Museum for Art History Courses throughout the month of April, tune into The Grand Ole Opry for live streaming on Saturday evenings and check out tons of virtual attractions throughout the city.
Enjoy the beauty of southwest Florida that includes magnificent white sand beaches and the glittering waters of the Gulf of Mexico from the view of the Naples Beach Hotel & Golf resort live cam.
Virginia City, Nevada
Visit the Texas Hill Country from your living room! Check out the poppies at Wildseed Farm here. Then, head for the impressive National Museum of the Pacific war for a livestreaming history lesson. You can even get your music fix by watching a live performance from world-famous Luckenbach.
New Orleans, Louisiana
Head to the Big Easy and get your fit of local music when you tune into one of these artist livestreams and queue up the Feel-GoodNOLA Playlist. Next, whip up a few New Orleans dishes at home then explore New Orleans on a virtual tour. Keep the littles entertained with a virtual safari or underwater excursion with the Audubon Nature Institute.
Try riding the tallest roller coaster, ziplining over alligators, or standing on Main Street in front of Cinderella Castle. The Orlando Virtual Tour takes viewers into 85 experiences throughout Orlando, from theme parks and hotels to dining and shopping hot spots, with a 360-degree perspective.
Catalina Island, California
The island may be closed to visitors but you can still experience the magic of Catalina virtually. Enjoy live webcam footage of the harbor, underwater views of kelp beds and local fish from the USC Wrigley Catalina Marine Reserve, download educational resources for kids from the Catalina Island Conservancy and peruse exhibition archives from the Catalina Island Museum.
Visit Ventura Harbor virtually with the plethora of digital content. You can visit five unique Channel Islands National parks webcams including Anacapa Islands, Ocean Experience, Bald Eagles, Peregrine Falcons and Mount Diablo, plus a Channel Islands National Park virtual tour.
Visit Buckingham Palace and take a tour of the royal residence including the red-carpeted Throne Room, Grand Staircase and gilded Drawing Room.
Italy may be on lockdown, but you can still tour the Sistine Chapel.
Stroll through the Louvre on three virtual tours of the famous Paris museum.
Take a 360-degree flight over Baden-Württemberg, learn the Bavarian way of life, tune into Berlin's theaters and stages, see Dresden from 360°, visit the Städel Museum in Frankfurt, head to German's second largest city, Hamburg, visit castles in North Rhine-Westphalia and enjoy virtual tours through museums in cities in Thuringia.
The Middle East
Virtually Israel posts 360-degree videos that cater to a variety of interests, from the beaches of Tel Aviv, to the historic Tower of David in Jerusalem, to a balloon ride over Tel Aviv. Additionally you can tour the Tel Aviv Museum and take a a 360-degree virtual tour of Jerusalem’s Old City.
Head to Aruba and get your fill of relaxing sights and sounds. The Aruba Tourism Authority has created plenty of videos and playlists to make you feel like you're on an island vaycay. Relax with 30 Minutes of Happiness, take a virtual tour of the Butterfly Sanctuary and learn how to make the snack staple, the pastechi. Stay up to date on more fun ways to learn by visiting Aruba's website!
Tourism Western Australia has just launched a 13-day VR tour across the state on their Facebook page. Viewers can see the vineyards in Margaret River, swim with Orca’s in Albany, and spy kangaroos on the whitest beach in Esperance. Kimberley Air Tours has also created Kimberley Air Tours from the Couch which includes images of Lake Argyle ands Ord River Irrigation Area & Kununurra.
Postcards from our Backyard, developed by the Western Australian Indigenous Tourism Operators Council (WAITOC), shares stories about the lifestyle of Aboriginal tour operators. Viewers can learn to make fire with Josh Whiteland from Koomal Dreaming in the Margaret River region, travel with Darren Capewell from Wula Gura Nyinda Eco Adventures in Shark Bay, and catch bushtucker with Johani Mamid from Mabu Buru Broome Aboriginal Tours. Finally7, enjoy live virtual tours from The Busselton Jetty is offering live virtual tours for $11 each.
—Jennifer Swartvagher & Karly Wood