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While our wanderlust and joy for travel seems to have been benched in 2020, it’s time to get back in the game in 2021 as destinations gradually open. While you hold your reservation-making breath, our desire to see and explore the world is stronger than ever.
Today, you can virtually jet off to Spain or the Netherlands to visit beloved destinations worldwide. Well, virtual is the new in-person, you can tour the most iconic museums without leaving the comfort and safety of your home. Check out some of our faves.
Virtual is the new in-person, you can tour the most iconic museums without leaving the comfort and safety of your home.
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THE VATICAN MUSEUMS | Vatican City, Italy
The Vatican Museums showcase collections of works amassed by the Catholic Church and the papacy throughout the centuries, also featuring some of the most significant places of the Apostolic Palaces. Notably one of the most captivating works of art, Michelangelo’s ceiling in the Sistine Chapel is just one sight to see in the virtual tours of the Vatican Museums.
Additional tours take you inside “Raphael’s Rooms,” “Salone Sistino,” “Alexandrine Hall” and many others. A visually appealing 360-degree view provides an artistically detailed journey through the Christian-faith journey. View from the comfiest place in your home and transcend through history.
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PICASSO MUSEUM | Barcelona, Spain
In Barcelona, lies the stunning Picasso Museum, a key reference for understanding the formative years of Pablo Picasso. The museum’s collection includes 4,251 works that reveal the genius of the young artist and his deep relationship with the city.
The virtual tour of the museum gives you an inside look at the main works in a way that is intimate yet spontaneous and informal, perfect for at-home viewing. Moreover, there is the option to visit the courtyards and discover, in an innovative, interactive and highly visual way, the elements that have shaped these spaces over history.
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LA CASA AZUL | Mexico City, Mexico
Fans of Frida Kahlo know her famous blue house in Mexico, where she lived for the majority of her life, and dream of visiting it. Now, the residence has been transformed into a museum, and, even better, can be viewed from your own home.
The Frida Kahlo museum in Mexico, known as “La Casa Azul,” showcases a colorful, vibrant virtual tour for those who can’t yet make the trip out to the suburbs of Mexico. The tour begins in the house’s outdoor courtyard, and viewers can stroll through galleries decorated with yellow floors and admire the works of Kahlo and her husband Diego Rivera.
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HERMITAGE MUSEUM | Saint Petersburg, Russia
The Hermitage Museum in Russia is the second-largest art museum in the world, with a collection that includes more than 3 million works of art and cultural artifacts, including paintings, graphic works, sculptures, works of applied art and numismatic objects.
The virtual museum tour—offered in Italian, French, Chinese and English—begins with a visit to the Winter Palace, the former official residence of the Russian tsars. Other viewable areas include the museum complexes, treasure gallery, exhibition projects, outdoor views and exhibition centers. In short, the virtual tour is expansive and guaranteed to entertain you for hours.
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THE LOUVE | Paris, France
The Louve, the most-visited museum in the world, is an ICONIC and historic Paris monument. Though many plan to visit this beloved site in person, you can skip the waiting game and check out the free online tours of some of its most important and popular exhibits, including the Egyptian Antiques and works of Michelangelo.
The 360-degree virtual tour of the 60,500-square-meter building with 35,000 paintings, sculptures and other artifacts is an immersive experience that allows viewers to click on rare artifacts throughout the museum to learn more about their history. Though being one of the 10 million in-person visitors per year is a feat on the horizon, anyone can tour from home now.
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NATIONAL MUSEUM OF AFRICAN AMERICAN HISTORY & CULTURE | Washington, D.C.
The National Museum of African American History and Culture is the only national museum devoted exclusively to the documentation of African American life, history, and culture, and the museum is open for virtual touring only. It was established by Act of Congress in 2003 to promote and highlight the contributions of African Americans.
To date, the Museum has collected more than 36,000 artifacts and the museum opened to the public in 2016, as the 19th and newest museum of the Smithsonian Institution. The NMAAHC is a public institution open to all, where anyone is welcome to participate, collaborate and learn more about African American history and culture.
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THE METROPOLITAN MUSEUM OF ART | New York City, New York
The Metropolitan Museum of Art is one of the world’s largest and finest art museums with a collection of more than 2 million works of art. The Met is described as a place that always aspired to be more than a treasury of rare and beautiful objects. With a mission to celebrate the art of living beautifully, we had to include The Met in our roundup.
Though the museum has two physical sites in New York City, it also offers an online experience that conjures in millions of people. The Met 360° Project presents a series of videos to offer new and dynamic access to some of the most captivating spaces.
The museum describes the experiences as one in which “viewers can experience the magic of standing in an empty gallery after-hours, witnessing a bustling space in time-lapse, or floating high above The Met Cloisters for a bird’s-eye view.”