The world is slowly getting back to normal and millions of people are desperate to jump on a plane and go on the trip of a lifetime. However amazing this sounds, it’s not a reality for most of us just yet as restrictions are still in place.
That said, there are ways that you can escape to faraway places without ever leaving your home. Ok you might not be there physically but you’ll be surprised at how doing the following can cure your travel itch and make you even more excited for the future trips that you’re going to take when the world opens up once more.
1. Try Foods from Exotic Locations
There are a number of different ways of doing this, and while a popular way is to check out trending viral recipe ideas on TikTok or YouTube, you can also try exotic foods by signing up for a subscription delivery service.
Choosing a snack subscription box is always a good idea as you get the opportunity to sample lots of different treats instead of just one meal. This will give you a good indication of the types of food and different flavors you can enjoy when you travel to specific countries. Have a friend that loves to travel? This is the ideal birthday gift.
2. Get A Close-Up View of Things
With Google street view you can view any road mapped by Google’s many vehicles, but while you could easily go down the Walk of Fame in Hollywood or check out what street performer was playing on a certain day in Prague, there are other ways of checking out parts of the world.
Google Maps’ virtual treks feature (search for it) will allow you to visit more inaccessible locations that would require a lot of planning and effort. Do you dream of climbing Mt. Fuji? Or do you want to see what it’s like on the top floor of Burj Khalifa? You can do both with Google Treks so explore this app and you’ll be amazed at what it can do.
3. Take Virtual Museum Tours
A lot of museums have set up systems where visitors can check out their collections remotely. While this feature was created to allow the general public to access artwork and permanent collections without having to be in the museum physically, this technology is now being used for different purposes.
Whether it’s helping students get info for projects or putting on educational workshops for kids, museums like The Louvre, The British Museum, The Vatican Museum and The Smithsonian have a remote, digital accessibility option that will take you inside their doors on a journey of discovery.
This is fascinating technology so make your favorite beverage, sit back and open your mind to new cultures, new artists and history.
4. Lean a New Language
There has literally never been a better time to learn a new language. While you have gift codes being thrown out by podcasters for various apps and services, Duolingo is still free and allows you to learn a variety of languages.
You can even learn fictional languages like High Valyrian and Klingon alongside less-known native languages like Gaelic, Welsh and Yiddish. While it may not take you to Scotland or Wales, learning a language native to a country could certainly give you a head start when the time comes to travel and explore new destinations.
Equally, if you have done one of those genetic heritage tests and found out you have a native history outside of your linguistic profile, this may be a really good way of being able to connect with your ancestors.
If you don’t know what language to learn, make a list of the countries you want to visit and see if a pattern emerges in terms of the languages that the locals speak in each place. You might save yourself so much time by doing this one simple exercise.
5. Explore World Heritage Sites
An often-overlooked part of digital exploration is that UNESCO, who are the body in charge of internationally recognized world heritage sites of significance, frequently update their website to allow for the digital access to these sites of historical relevancy.
With over a thousand different sites on the list, including places like the Taj Mahal and Stonehenge, you should be able to find a lot of sites that pique your curiosity.
Did you read a book about the Nazca Lines growing up? Check out what they look like from a helicopter. Not entirely sure that the pelican is truly of a pelican but we get where the labels came from at least.
6. Visit Aquariums and Zoos
Some of the hardest hit businesses, outside of hospitality, are zoos and aquariums as they rely so heavily on tourism to bring in the funds that are needed to keep their animals safe and healthy.
Check out some of the most exotic animals in the world by logging on to the San Diego Zoo website and watching the live feed of the animals being fed and cared for.
They also do virtual tours of the zoo and you’ll get to meet exotic animals from all over the world. If you are in a position to financially support them by donating you can always get involved that way too.
7. Plan Your Next Big Trip
Sometimes the only way to cure an itch to travel is to start planning an epic adventure. Choose where you want to go and pick the dates that you’d like to travel on. Research accommodation and put a rough plan in place.
Once you have the logistics sorted, it’s time to immerse yourself in the culture of the country that you’re travelling to. Learn a little bit about the culture of the people and be mindful of the differences between your own culture and that of the place you’re going to.
Find out more about the way of life there and start to learn the basics of the local language so you can interact with others and get the most from your experience.