We’re hearing it everywhere. Don’t go anywhere. Social distancing. Flatten the curve. Shelter in place. And my favorite, #staythef***home (click here to see how that one started). And unfortunately, many of us suspect this is just the beginning of a long road of staying home and staying away from other people.
Whether you’re a frequent traveler or not, people can eventually become a little stir crazy when they’re stuck in one place for long periods of time. After all, there’s only so much Netflix and Disney+ binging a person can do.
Thankfully, the internet can provide dozens of “virtual” tours of places people visit. Museums. National parks. Big cities. Aquariums & zoos. Here are some places you can “visit” from home:
MCN is a professional community that empowers museums to embrace opportunities within the evolving digital landscape. They’re a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization operating out of New York and appear to have the motherload of museum resources, including links to thousands of collections, images, models, exhibits, portals, e-learning, archives and stuff for kids. Click here to see what they have to offer.
Google Arts & Culture is listed under MCN’s page for having over 2000 museum partners in 80+ countries. Besides museums though, they’re also working in cooperation with the National Park Service to offer guided tours of Bryce Canyon, Carlsbad Canyon, the Dry Tortugas, Hawai’i Volcanoes and Kanai Fjords National Parks. Yellowstone National park has its own virtual tours online, which can be found at this link.
T&L’s Insider writes that BroadwayHD, a streaming service for theater fans, has announced that in addition to its preexisting library of almost 300, they’re going to curate new playlists for Broadway fans. They’re also offering a free seven-day trial, along with an $8.99 monthly plan. Click here for more info.
The San Diego Zoo is the most visited zoo in the country and they have a bunch of live cams set up so you can watch their penguins, tigers, elephants, koalas, and other residents. Click here to get started.
The Houston Zoo also has several live webcams set up so you can check in on their giraffes, gorillas, elephants, chimps, leafcutter ants and rhinos.
If you’re more into naked mole-rats, lions or pandas, you can check out the Smithsonian Nantional Zoo‘s webcams.
The Georgia Aquarium has live webcams available of their beluga whales, California sea lions, piranhas, African penguins, jellyfish, and others.
Monterey Bay Aquarium also has several live webcams to choose from – you can watch their kelp forest, sharks, aviary, sea otters, and more.
The Shedd Aquarium is allowing a bonded pair of rockhopper penguins, named Edward and Annie, to explore the rest of the zoo while it’s closed. Their videos on Twitter are very cute.
EarthCam bills itself as, “…the leading network of live streaming webcams for tourism and entertainment.” It has views of all around the world, including New York City, Las Vegas, New Orleans, Boston, Hawaii, plus Aruba, the U.K., Spain, the Phillippines, the Netherlands, and even the fish tank of an elementary school in Brooklyn, NY ;-). Plus a whole bunch more. Of course, most places are recommending not going out and some cities even have “shelter-in-place” order to help ensure people stay home. But the views of “what’s happening in NAME THAT PLACE right now” are still nice to look at when you’re tired of looking out your own window. Some, like Times Square, even have sound. Click here to see everything that EarthCam has to offer.
Metropolitan Opera House
The Met in NYC is, of course, currently closed. From their website: “During this extraordinary and difficult time, the Met hopes to brighten the lives of our audience members even while our stage is dark. Every day for the duration of the Met’s closure, a different encore presentation from the company’s Live in HD series will be made available for free streaming.” Click here to get started.
Hang in there, travel friends!
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This post first appeared on Your Mileage May Vary