At present, almost all of us are forced shut inside our homes to escape the wrath of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. While self-isolation is a necessary step to combat the spread of this virus, it has certainly been a huge blow to travel buffs all over the world who had already made their summer travel plans. Looking at the way things are going, travel restrictions are likely to be in place for some time to come and no one knows when we will be able to resume traveling the way we did before.
So, what do we do in such a scenario? Well, technology has once again come to our rescue. A number of live streams and 360-degree virtual tours have been launched in the past few weeks to help people explore their favorite destinations from the comfort of their homes. Yes, they won’t be the same thing as actually visiting the location, but it is still nice to be able to enjoy some wonderful places from your couch in these trying times. Check out a few of these amazing virtual tours.
Machu Picchu (meaning “Old Mountain” in Quechua) is one of the most stunning stone architectures the world has seen. It has been one of the top tourist destinations in Peru, and for good reason. The spectacular peaks that offer the breathtaking views of the Andean mountains along with its emerald green terraces make Machu Picchu a truly unique destination.
Constructed in the mid-15th century by the Inca people, the mountains stand 7,970 feet (2429 meters) above sea level. The beautiful archeological ruins are believed by historians to be the estate of the Inca emperor Pachacuti.
The well-known Inca Trail hike to Machu Picchu has become quite famous over the years and this season would have been an ideal time to go for it. Since visiting the place isn’t possible right now, you can take a virtual 360-degree tour to get the Machu Picchu experience from your home. With a helpful audio guide, you will learn about the various fascinating locations hidden in these mountains while also getting to witness places like Temple of the Moon, Huayna Picchu (the summit), and the Urubamba River.
Explore Machu Pichu here.
“Sydney Opera House stands by itself as one of the indisputable masterpieces of human creativity, not only in the 20th century but in the history of humankind” - International Council Report on Monuments and Sites to the World Heritage Committee.
This iconic structure has been a UNESCO World Heritage site since 2007 and has fascinated people for years. The Sydney Opera House is an architectural masterpiece designed by Danish architect Jørn Utzon. Construction of the building began in 1959 and was supposed to take four years. However, it was completed only in 1973, since the design was very intricate.
Its fabled halls have hosted 1,600 performances every year including ballet, opera, theater, dance, music, comedy, children’s shows and much more.
Now that the iconic building has closed its doors due to the ongoing pandemic, it has broken many a heart. However, through a new digital program of weekly live recordings, the Sydney Opera House is now offering never-before-seen footage to viewers all over the world. You can see Nicole Car singing the aria “Song to the Moon” from Dvorak’s Rusalka opera and also get to view a reversal of Rimsky-Korsakov’s “Scheherazade” by the Sydney Symphony Orchestra. If these aren’t enough, some incredible views of the vantages from inside will certainly astound you.
Visit the Sydney Opera House here.
Rome is filled with the most majestic travel locations. But no trip to this city would be complete without visiting the Fontana di Trevi, or Trevi Fountain. Located in the Quirinale district of Rome, it is widely regarded as the world's most famous fountain.
While it was one of the 1,352 fountains in 4th century Rome, the Trevi Fountain always stood out because of its marvelous architecture. The fountain was built at the endpoint of the junction of three roads also called tre vie. This is how the place got its name. The Trevi Fountain stands a massive 85 feet tall (26 meters) and is almost 65 feet wide (20 meters). It also pumps out about 2,824,800 cubic feet (79989 cubic meters) of water every day. All of the spilled out water is recycled.
On average, the Trevi Fountain gets 1,200 visitors per hour. Now that Italy is under lockdown, the historical landmark has borne a deserted look for over a month. Thankfully, though, you can now view the fountain through a live cam. Its soothing waters and flamboyant design might just be what you need right now to calm your nerves.
Marvel at the Trevi Fountain here.
The United Kingdom has been badly hit by the coronavirus outbreak with more than 93,000 cases already and 12,000 deaths at the time of writing. This has affected its most famous city, London, as the entire country remains under lockdown. The capital and the largest city of the United Kingdom is steeped in a rich history that goes back to Roman times. London has some of the most charismatic locations and attracts large numbers of tourists all year round.
To help people experience the landmarks of London from their homes during this quarantine period, a ‘Visit London’ virtual tour has been started, giving us a 360-degree experience of the magical city. You can click and drag on any place with your mouse or finger and explore the numerous stunning sites of London – Big Ben, Buckingham Palace, Tower Bridge and many more – through this innovative digital tour.
Take a virtual tour of London here.
There are few places as colorful and glamorous as Santorini, Greece. The southernmost island in the Cyclades, Santorini's official name is Thira (Thera in classical Greek). The towns of Oia, Firostefani, Fira, and Imerovigli are a sight for sore eyes with their vibrant surroundings. The whitewashed buildings, the blue domes, the magnificent churches and the astonishing views from the mountains all make Santorini really special.
The Santorini live cam will come as a welcome relief for many who are quarantined at home and are yearning to visit this gorgeous island. It provides a panoramic view of the many places here, especially the sparkling Aegean Sea.
Visit Santorini virtually here.
The Eiffel Tower in Paris is popularly known as one of the most romantic spots in the world and continues to enthrall people from every corner of the globe. It was built in 1889 to celebrate the centennial of the French Revolution and has changed colors several times over the decades.
So many of us have fantasized about visiting this historical structure. If you had plans in the near future to take a trip to the iconic monument, then don’t be disheartened yet. A live view of the Eiffel Tower has been launched where you won't just be able to admire its beauty, but even be able to play a time-lapse of the previous day. This will allow you to catch the sunrise, sunset, and the nightly light show at the tower from inside your home. Won’t that be a pleasing sight to cherish in these depressing times?
Are you craving being inside a forest reserve right now surrounded by an abundance of wildlife? It must be frustrating for nature lovers especially to be cooped up at home and being unable to visit their favorite wildlife destinations.
There is some respite for wildlife enthusiasts, though. You can explore a range of different African national parks through a series of live cams. Some of Africa’s notable wild animals are captured in their natural surroundings all through the day in places like the Tembe Elephant Park, Madikwe Game Reserve, Gorilla Forest Corridor, Sabi Sand Game Reserve, Olifants River, and a few others, through these live cams.
The sounds of nature and the rare glimpses of the animals like elephants, lions, hippos, cheetahs, leopards and more, strolling around in their natural habitat will certainly be a thrilling experience to savor on your screens. It is the second-best thing to being on an actual wildlife safari and to get away from all the negativity in the world.
Take a look at Africa's wild wonders here.