The Covid 19 pandemic brings with it many restrictions. We can no longer organize our free time in the way we were once accustomed to. Excursions are only possible to a limited extent, not to mention traveling. But especially families with children or elderly people in the household prefer to play it safe regardless of government regulations and reduce or completely avoid large gatherings of people. Fortunately, however, the digital world nowadays offers numerous opportunities to go on trips via the Internet. And it’s not just kids who can learn a lot in the process. Adults also have fun traveling virtually. We’ve put together a list of possible excursions for you to take on a virtual trip together anytime without leaving your living room. Travel through Europe, to America, and even to outer space or the depths of the oceans with the following free sites.
Virtual journey with Google Earth
Hardly anyone does not know Google Earth. Surely everyone has already traveled the world with this tool and looked at distant countries and sights. Not only does it give you a great bird’s eye view, but you can also zoom in to the streets and look at cities via Google StreetView or even the Sahara, mountains, beaches and much more. In addition to that, there are also real photos to see to make your virtual trip even more interesting. So it’s worth installing this program once if you haven’t done so yet. A good alternative, which probably everyone with Android already has on their phone, is Google Maps.
Visit museums virtually
Many museums offer virtual tours on their websites, where you can look at paintings, sculptures and other exhibits, not only in Germany, but all over the world. Thus, in principle, nothing stands in the way of your urge for cultural things, because you can go on a virtual journey. For example, you can visit the Musée du Louvre (which will save you hours of waiting in line) and show the kids the world-famous Mona Lisa, or Japanese art from the Tokyo Fuji Art Museum.
You can also visit the Guggenheim Museum in New York or the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam. Would you rather stay in Germany? How about the Pergamon Museum in Berlin or the Deutsches Museum in Munich? Many of the tours are provided by Google Arts & Culture.
- Musée du Louvre in Paris
- Tokyo Fuji Art Museum
- Guggenheim Museum in New York
- Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam
- Pergamon Museum in Berlin
- German Museum in Munich
Virtual journey in factories and theme parks
Younger children may not show much interest in this type of museum. Fortunately, however, there are options for a virtual trip that can also hold their attention. Meaning, for example, tours of the factory where the delicious M&M’s are made (in English) or Nestlé. Have you planned a trip to Lego Land or Disneyland, but had to postpone it due to the pandemic? Why not go for a virtual walk to get some idea of what awaits you there!
- M&M’s factory
- Lego-Land and how Lego is made (to read in advance or by yourself)
Virtual travel through zoos and animal parks
If there’s one thing that fascinates children in particular, it’s animals – and this applies not only to native ones, but especially to exotic ones that you don’t see every day. Walking through a zoo may be much more interesting and fun in real life, but in times of pandemic or just when the weather isn’t cooperating, a virtual trip can be a good alternative. Many zoos have webcams, thanks to which you can watch the animals live.
Even marine animals can be viewed by choosing an aquarium with this feature. Seaworld in Orlando is one of them. The zoo in Zurich also offers live cams, as does the zoo in Edinburgh. Or check out the polar bear at the zoo in Alaska! How about a safari in Africa or a trip to Kruger National Park?
- Seaworld in Orlando
- Zoo in Zurich
- Zoo in Edinburgh
- Safari in Africa
- Zoo in Alaska
- Kruger National Park
Virtual travel and sightseeing
Here you are truly spoiled for choice with thousands of options to choose from. The Colosseum in Rome, the Statue of Liberty in New York, the Great Wall of China, the Red Square in Moscow or St. Petersburg, the Eiffel Tower, the Pyramids of Giza, the Easter Islands and, and, and… You can even visit New York by virtual helicopter. A good option for virtual city trips and sightseeing is again Google Earth. But on the net you can also find other sites with web cams or 360-degree videos. You can find some of them in the following list of virtual trip ideas.
- Great Wall of China
- New York virtual with helicopter
- Pyramids of Giza
- Taj Mahal
- Saint Petersburg
- Colosseum for a virtual trip through Rome
Would you like to take a look at the beauty of the oceans and seas?
Many dream of diving , but not everyone has the opportunity to do so, whether for financial reasons or fear of going into the depths of the seas. But fortunately, in the 21st century, that doesn’t mean you have to miss out completely. With 360-degree videos, you can get a glimpse of what it’s like to dive, which might just give you the final push you need to finally take the plunge after the long pandemic.
Until then, you can go on a virtual journey and swim with seals or countless jellyfish, watch a shark feeding or simply marvel at the beautiful colors and shapes of the coral reefs . The following videos also provide interesting information about the species in English, so you can not only travel virtually, but also learn something new.
- Shark feeding in the Bahamas
- Diving with sharks in Cuba
- Diving among jellyfish
- Diving with seals in Japan
- Manta rays in Indonesia
- Underwater cave with colorful corals
The universe and the planets
Virtual reality trips of a special kind are those to outer space, simply because apart from photos, this is the only way for us to get a glimpse of the infinite expanse of the universe. Look for an activity for children where they can also learn something and which will captivate almost every child, so explain to them our planets, the moons, our solar system and tell a few interesting facts about the first moon landing by means of virtual tours through space.
Start the virtual journey into the universe with a video of a real rocket launch. A great Space Safari with interesting information is offered by German astronaut Reinhold Ewald. A link to the 360-degree video is below. Also at Google Earth you can explore the universe and even some planets as well as the moon and other interesting phenomena.
Quite a few planetariums offer online opportunities to learn more about the constellations. You can learn where which constellation is located. BBC again illustrates especially for children the distances from our earth to the other planets, the sun, various satellites and known meteorites. How huge our solar system is!
- Space Safari with Reinhold Ewald
- Online Stellarium
- How big is our universe from BBC
- Tour on Mars
- Visit the moon
- The earth from above with streamings from the ISS
More ideas for a virtual trip
Paragliding fascinates you, but you’re afraid of heights? Try paragliding over a snowy landscape in Russia and enjoy the unique beauty of the mountains.
Many children find insects quite interesting. The Natural History Museum offers the opportunity to zoom in on photos of a wide variety of bugs and take a closer look – all from the comfort of your sofa or desk, traveling virtually.
Climbing the highest mountain in the world, Everest, is an impossible notion for most people. And in fact, this challenge is associated with a lot of preparation. Even professional mountaineers are at risk during this expedition. Instead, embark on a virtual journey to the Himalayas , explore the route and do it in front of a warm fireplace instead of in freezing cold. There are also apps with 3D maps of the Alps, such as those from 3D RealityMaps , which allow you to enjoy our beautiful European mountains.
Virtual Touring around the world
The largest cave in the world Hang Son Doong is located in Vietnam and more precisely in Phong Nha-Ke Bang National Park. You can visit this unique natural phenomenon from the comfort of your computer or smartphone using National Geographic’s 3D tour for a virtual journey. High-quality images and sounds such as the rushing of the river and the chirping of birds will send them into jungle fever.
Want to take a virtual trip through Berlin? You can also take a virtual walk through the Reichstag building and the Federal Chancellery with the help of a 3D tour that you can find here. By the way, you can also enjoy the great view over Berlin. Or how about the Berlin TV Tower ?
With a little luck you can watch the impressive aurora borealis via live web cam. The camera is located in Churchill in Canada . But if the weather or the season does not play along, you can also enjoy the beautiful sight simply by 360-degree video recording. You can find such videos on the page Lights over Lapland . There you can not only watch auroras , but also take a short virtual sleigh ride with reindeer or visit the beautiful ice hotel. Take a look, because then you can travel virtually to Sweden in no time.