Virtual visits to museums, zoos and aquariums take you to world’s great tourist attractions

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Many museums in places like Paris, London and Berlin have transitioned to virtual, online tours so those sitting out the coronavirus pandemic at home can visit via computer screens. You don’t need a plane ticket anymore to visit these one-of-a-kind museums around the world. 

British Museum – London, England

The British Museum has several ways to experience the museum from home. You can use Google Street View, a feature on Google Maps, to visit the interior of the museum. The British Museum is actually the largest indoor space you can visit on Google Street View. It has also made an interactive game called Museum of the World. Visit it here.

The Louvre – Paris, France

One of the most iconic museums around the world, the Louvre offers a virtual tour of their exhibits. Visit the Mona Lisa and Egyptian artifacts here.

National Portrait Gallery – Washington D.C.

Learn about art history and view the only museum in the country dedicated to American portraiture here, at home.

Vatican Museum – Vatican City

The smallest country in the world, Vatican City, is home to the Pope and Vatican Museum. You can see the chapels, wings and rooms in 360-degree view here.

Melbourne Museum – Melbourne, Australia

Similar to the British Museum, the Melbourne Museum has many ways to visit. On their website here, you can tour via Google Street View, view their at-home learning resources or tune into one of their virtual learning sessions.

Tourist in Your Own Town – New York 

Tourist in Your Own Town is dedicated to visiting the hidden gems of New York City. Museums like the Dyckman Farmhouse and the New York City Fire Museum are available on their website. However, they provide videos of each of the hidden gems rather than a 360-degree view. They inform you of facts and history from the museum.

Google Arts and Culture

This isn’t necessarily a museum, but a website that provides many museums available to tour online. If the museum you planned to visit isn’t on this list, it most likely is in Google Arts and Culture. Visit it here. For easy access, if you are on a personal Google account, hit the icon in the corner with nine squares, scroll down and Google Arts and Culture will be there. 

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Animal attractions are also available to visit online. Here are some aquariums and zoos you can visit from your computer.

The Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary – Australia 

The Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary has 18 animal cams, with eight koala cams, three dingo puppy cams, three reptile cams and two platypus cams, as well as a webcam over the Brisbane River. Visit their website here.

Georgia Aquarium – Atlanta, Georgia

The Georgia Aquarium is home to hundreds of sea animals, as well as holding the title of being the largest aquarium in the Western Hemisphere. At their website, you can view live webcams of sea animals, go on a field trip, use their resources for at-home learning or watch their deep sea learning episodes. Visit their website here.

Coral Reefs – Around the World

Reefcam.tv is dedicated to displaying reefs from around the world. According to the website, “Reefcam exists to show the world the beauty and importance of coral reef ecosystems.” You can watch webcams of coral reefs from the Cayman Islands, Hawaii and Australia. You can view the webcams here.

London Zoo – London, England

One of the oldest zoos in the world, the London Zoo is home to 698 species of animals, many of which you can watch on the webcams they offer. The online attractions include zookeeper videos, animal livestreams/webcams, as well as behind-the-scenes videos. Visit the website here.

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Museums are not the only attractions you can visit online, however. Many tourist attractions are available for virtual tours.

Eiffel Tower – Paris, France

The Eiffel Tower, one of the most visited tourist attractions in the world, has offered a virtual tour during quarantine. The tour is taken on a drone and is shown in 360-degree view. If you are more into the history of tourist attractions, Google Arts and Culture offers online exhibits on the construction of the Eiffel Tower as well as the tower during its early days. You can visit the Eiffel Tour history exhibits here and the 360-degree tour here.

Theme Parks

Surprisingly, you can actually visit many theme parks around the world. Theme park enthusiasts typically bring a GoPro with them on the ride and record the roller coaster experience, also known as a POV. Simply go to YouTube and search the ride you want to watch along with “POV,” or search a theme park you want to visit and “POV.” Many riders also put “front seat” in their title, guaranteeing a great view. You can visit Kingda Ka at Six Flags Great Adventure here.

Metropolitan Opera

The world famous opera house is hosting nightly opera streams at 7:30 p.m. If you can’t make it, don’t worry. The stream will be available for 23 hours, till 6:30 p.m. the next day. The streams are available on the website, here. Also, view the streams on apps from Apple, Amazon, Samsung Smart TV and Roku devices. In order to view the streams without logging in, click the “Browse and Preview” button in connected TV apps and the “Explore the App” button on mobile devices.

Helicopter Ride around NYC

Maybe a helicopter ride around NYC has always been that tourist attraction you secretly wanted to do, but never had the chance to do it because a) you had no time, or b) the price was through the roof. Now, you can do it without leaving your home or paying a penny. Visit the virtual tour here.

Airbnb Online Experiences 

This is the only virtual tour on the list that may cost money. A few of the Airbnb Online Experiences are free, but typically sell out extremely quickly. Some online experiences include baking with family, concerts, Q&As with Olympians and dance classes. They aren’t only in the United States, but places such as Spain, Belgium, South Korea, The Netherlands and many more. Register for your Airbnb Online Experience here.