Travel the World on Lockdown

Virtual visits from around the world

The current health situation has put a stop to all leisure travel and the industry will take some time to recover. In the meantime, destinations and attractions around the world are offering those confined to their homes an opportunity to pay them a visit without leaving the comfort of their armchair. So settle down and explore some of the amazing places the world has to offer.

Dubai Dubai Beachhas a number of locations you can check out. Click on the i button, top right of your screen to see the wide range of places to visit. Take a look at the Deira city centre shopping mall and Mall of The Emirates, dive into the aquarium, swing by the golf club, take look at the riverside boardwalk, pop into Famous Dave’s or Ella’s Creamery, take helicopter rides over parts of the city and examine the traditional Juma and Obaid bin Thani House. Just looking at the sunny images, inviting beaches, luxury hotels and tempting shopping malls is enough to brighten anyone’s day.

From Dubai, why not head out to Australia and head for Bowral in New South Wales where you can visit the Bradman Museum, named after the famous cricketer Sir Donald Bradman. It’s a temple of devotion to that quintessentially English sport that is still popular in the Commonwealth. You can also visit the Art Gallery of NSW which has a number of online exhibitions for art lovers to enjoy.

MelbourneWhile you are ‘down under’, pop across to Victoria to spend some time in the Melbourne Museum and take advantage of the five virtual tours on offer. When you’ve finished, the Immigration Museum has some fascinating exhibits of Australia’s past.

Ever had a yen to go to Japan? Well, how about visiting the spectacular Makido cave in Okayama which comes alive as green, purple, and pink lights dance across its jagged walls and pointed ceilings. The only drawback is that you can’t throw coins into the Sensui, garden pool to make your wishes come true. Hiroshima is also worth a visit where you can relax in the four-hundred year old Shukkeien Gardens and its gloriously peaceful settings.

Makido CaveNeed a drink? Then head over to the Buffalo Trace Distillery in Kentucky for a Bourbon experience then visit nearby Lexington – well you don’t have to worry about drinking and driving. Enjoy a peaceful break at the Stratton Falls in Roxbury and stay at the lovely and unique contemporary Roxbury Lodgings.

The National Parks are hugely popular with Americans and visitors alike and you can visit major attractions from Alaska to New Mexico and Hawai’i without leaving home. For art lovers the Maine Maritime Museum has some lovely paintings of ships from a bygone era. On the subject of art, the The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art in Amherst, Massachusetts, provides fascination for people of all ages.

PlymouthIt’s four hundred years since the founding fathers from Plymouth in the UK landed at what is now Plymouth, Massachusetts, so a visit there is certainly a timely experience.

Of course you can’t not link the USA with George Washington and a visit to his ancestral home, Mount Vernon, is something not to be missed. Then you can head south, and you can’t get further south in the US mainland than Key West. Check out the pool and beach from the live stream at the Reach Resort.

Chile is tough to get to but whilst you are sitting comfortably, take a look at the Santiago, Chile Observatory. It looks like a comfortable home from home.

Paris © ATOUT FRANCE - Patrice ThebaultFeeling exhausted by these long-haul destinations, then take an easy trip to Paris where you can visit many of the famous sites including Sacre Coeur, the Opera, the Louvre, the Monnaie, Grand Palais, Sainte-Chapelle, Musée de la musique – Philharmonie and, of course, the Eiffel Tower. Culture vultures can enjoy a range of performances from the Opera de Paris, including Don Giovanni, Swan Lake, Barber of Seville and Carmen. This is just a selection of virtual events and exhibitions that Paris has to offer the armchair visitor. Who needs Eurostar!

Hvar in Croatia claims to have more hours of sun per year than any other European island so why not drop by and see what is happening at the lovely harbour right now.

Poznan Old TownA little colder but full of interesting places is Poland. Let’s start with Gdansk, the birthplace of the Solidarity movement, which brought an end to Communist rule in Poland triggered the collapse of the Eastern Bloc and the fall of the Berlin Wall. Also worth a visit is Poznan with its lovely Renaissance buildings, town hall, Ostrów Tumski Cathedral and more. There’s so much to see.

Well, you must be exhausted by this whirlwind tour of the globe so it’s time to relax and celebrate that it hasn’t cost you a penny and there’s not even a suitcase to unpack.

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Mike Pickup

Award-winning travel writer & photographer

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