Self-isolating and social distancing due to COVID-19 don’t mean that you can’t still explore the world around you. Now, more than ever, people are encouraged to engage in cultural activities from the comfort of their homes in an effort to stimulate curiosity and a deeper understanding of the world around them.
As we move closer to summer, many people will likely find themselves stuck inside and perhaps grieving due to forced cancellation of their summer vacation plans. This can be especially difficult if you have little ones who are now going to be spending their summer at home.
If that’s the case, make sure you work towards finding fun and unique ways to travel from home. Exploring the world doesn’t have to stop, you just have to get creative about how you do it. Here are ten trips you can take from your couch during the quarantine.
If you’ve ever dreamed of Paris in the springtime then now’s your chance to experience it up close and personal. Well, the dark, spooky side of it at least. The Catacombs official website allows you to pay a virtual visit to this iconic Parisian landmark. The tour is a bit like exploring the city by Google Earth in that it presents the winding, dark labyrinth through a series of still photographs. Use the direction keys in the middle to explore the 360-degree photo you’re currently looking at or get closer to something you’re interested in.
Disney World has closed its gates for the foreseeable future for the first time in, well, ever. But, that doesn’t mean you and your little ones can’t explore the magic of the Happiest Place on Earth with Mickey Mouse. If you’ve had to cancel a trip to Disney World, Disneyland or any of the other Disney parks due to COVID-19, you can still explore the rides, just virtually. Other travelers have taken it upon themselves to upload virtual ride tours. Throw in some great lighting, surround sound music and perhaps even a bit of movement and your kids will get to experience the magic almost as if they were actually there!
Take you and your family on a cultural tour of the United States via Google Arts & Culture. This summer, you don’t have to forego your family’s road trip. Instead, simply move it online. The Google platform is offering six unique virtual tours of some of the nation’s coolest national parks, including Hawai’i Volcanoes, the Carlsbad Caverns, and Dry Tortugas in Florida. The interactive tours come with an audio guide and unique facts about each spot.
Stay home orders have forced more than a few people to hone their cooking skills. If you find yourself bored of the same old canned food recipes, try virtually traveling to Italy to cook pasta with an Italian grandmother. Airbnb recently launched an Online Experience section that allows people to participate in unique experiences from the comfort of their homes. In this particular experience, Nonna Nerina, an 84-year-old Italian grandmother in Palombara Sabina, Italy, has set up a virtual cooking class to teach you how to make ravioli, gnocchi, and fettuccine.
Traveling to Australia is usually a trip you save years for as it’s on the other side of the world from, well, pretty much everything. However, during this quarantine period as we all practice social distancing in order to slow the spread of the coronavirus, you can still visit Sydney safely. Turn on the Sydney Harbor’s live cam to indulge in breathtaking views of the Sydney Opera House, the Sydney Harbour Bridge, and the city skyline.
Similar to the Sydney webcam, Tokyo has a perfectly placed webcam that will allow you to gaze out onto the Japanese city’s skyline and enjoy breathtaking sunrises and sunsets all from the comfort of your couch. The city’s skyscrapers are often what makes these views so iconic, and the view provided by the webcam ensures that you’ll enjoy a unique perspective you might not normally get if you traveled to the city as a normal tourist.
If your idea of a perfect weekend is visiting a museum with coffee in hand then this lockdown is probably particularly challenging for you. However, numerous museums around the world have opened their (virtual) doors to guests for enriching visits. The National Gallery of Art in Washington, DC is one of them, along with the Louvre in Paris and the Uffizi Gallery in Florence. With these virtual tours, you can explore some of the world’s most iconic artworks without the added stress of crowds and high ticket prices.
Forget about shivering in the arctic Canadian cold just to get a glimpse of the awe-inspiring Northern Lights. Instead of traveling to Churchill, Manitoba, you can view the Northern Lights at home. You know, all cozied up in your pajamas in bed. The city has a live cam that, if you time it right, will allow you to see the sky light up in rich green and blue colors during the nighttime display of the aurora borealis. The Northern Lights are typically strongest from 5 pm to 2 am, so be sure to try and schedule your viewing to sometime in the evening to get the best views.
Let’s face it, hiking all the way to Machu Picchu sounds glamorous and extravagant, but it’s hard. If you’re interested in exploring this 15th-century ancient citadel and getting to know the llamas who call it home, why not opt for a virtual tour instead of the real thing? No, you can’t actually play with the llamas, but You Visit has designed a unique and immersive 360-degree virtual tour that’ll get you as close as possible without actually traveling to the Andes Mountains.
Judaism, Christianity, and Islam converge to create a unique cultural and religious melting pot in Jerusalem. And, now, you can explore this iconic city without ever boarding a plane. Tour The Church of the Holy Sepulcher, the Western Wall, Mount of Olives, and other tourist attractions simply by using Samsung VR technology. It’s a unique and extremely immersive experience that’s enhanced if you have a VR headset to use.
Saving Up For Your Next Big Trip
It’s hard to say when you’ll be able to travel again, whether domestically or internationally to hot destinations such as Paris, Sydney or Rome. However, one thing’s for certain, and that’s the fact that you’ll need to work towards saving for your next big trip once lockdowns are over and travel bans are lifted.
Signing up for a Cheese Debit Card is one great way to add on to your monthly savings without doing much additional work. With $0 in fees and lots of great savings opportunities, it’s a great way to slowly add onto your adventure fund in a way that really doesn’t add any additional financial stress to your life.
Learn more here and begin to unlock all of our super cheesy savings today.