Take your mind on a trip this quarantine with these virtual tours

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The safest way to avoid contracting COVID-19 right now is by social distancing, but many of us would be lying if we said we weren’t feeling the effects of staying at home all day. 

There’s only so much you can do within the four walls of your home without feeling like you’re falling into a rut. 

Thankfully, many attractions, parks and institutions that would otherwise be closed down due to the pandemic have begun to offer virtual tours and services online.

Some of these services should be available online year-round because, let’s be honest: I was probably never gonna travel to the Louvre anyway. But at least now I can do it from the comfort of my own couch! 

Ripley’s Aquarium

Ripley’s is offering what they call “Aquariums at home,” where viewers can tune in to watch live feedings, biologist Q&As and livestreams. 

The Toronto location is also streaming a shark cam, which offers a 24/7 view at the sharks as they float around their tank. 

If you’ve already been to the Toronto location and want to see something new, they’re also offering live streams from the Ripley’s Aquarium of the Smokies and the Ripley’s Aquarium of Myrtle Beach, where you can tune into their penguin cam.

Louvre Museum

Even if it wasn’t closed, you no longer have to book a trip to Paris to visit the Louvre. In fact, you can now check out some of the most famous pieces of art in the world from the virtual tours that they’re offering online.

Their site is offering tours of four of their exhibits, including Egyptian Antiquities, The Advent of the Artist, Gallerie d’Apollon and Remains of the Louvre’s moat. 

Metrololitan Museum of Art

The Met Gala may be cancelled this year, but that’s okay because The Met is offering virtual tours of their exhibits online (and let’s be real, it’s not like you were invited anyway).

There are over 26 online exhibits, plus even more individual collections that you can explore from their website.

And if you’re trying to give yourself a reason to finally change out of the t-shirt and sweatpants combo you’ve been sporting for the last two weeks, you can check out the Coco Chanel or Christian Dior exhibits, too.

Machu Picchu

If you’re an outdoor person who’s been itching to get out of the house, you can now explore Peru from your living room. Technically you’re still in your house, but this is basically the next best thing. 

The virtual tour is immersive and detailed, and features an audio guide as well, so you can sit back and truly enjoy this world heritage site from wherever you are in the world. 

Broadway

Instead of binge-watching whatever new is on Netflix, try watching a free Broadway play this week. 

BroadwayHD is offering free unlimited streams of their most popular shows once you sign up for their one-week trial, with every month after that costing $8.99. 

You can watch all sorts of critically acclaimed shows, like Cats, Kinky Boots, Driving Miss Daisy, and more. 

Aurora Borealis

With this livestream from Churchill, Manitoba, you no longer have to travel north to see the northern lights, also known as Aurora Borealis. 

Since the northern lights are a natural phenomenon, they aren’t always going to be fully visible from this stream — but if you’re home all day anyway you probably have enough downtime to wait it out. 

Luckily, late winter and early spring are the best times to see the lights, so tune in now so that you don’t miss anything! 

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