Exploration might be the best way for children to learn about the world. But with kids still stuck at home because of the coronavirus pandemic, parents are forced to be more creative with providing their children engaging and fulfilling learning experiences.
Fortunately, the Internet is filled with countless online tours that can provide kids with a virtual field trip in the safety of their homes. These digital experiences can take them through collections of famous and world-class art, around the hallways of the world’s historically significant structures, and even through the depths of space.
Read on for some of our favorite virtual tours to share with your kids!
Jelly Belly Factory Tour
Who doesn’t love jelly beans, especially when American candy brand Jelly Belly’s got the perfect flavors for everyone? Kids will certainly enjoy watching and learning walking through the process of making these candies, which can take between one to two weeks. CNET offers a virtual 360 tour which condenses the beans’ long journey into an immersive, two-minute trip. Make sure to watch it with a VR headset for the full experience. You can also watch it on your laptop and navigate the video with a mouse.
San Diego Zoo
The San Diego Zoo was one of the first zoos to create open-air, cageless exhibits that mimicked the natural habitats of their resident animals. They are also known for successfully breeding one of the few giant pandas born outside of China; although they have since been repatriated. The best feature on the San Diego Zoo’s website is its collection of live cams featuring some of its most popular animals, including apes, baboons, condors, penguins, and platypuses. An archived feed of the panda cam is also available.
The White House
Join Barack and Michelle Obama as they take you through a 360° tour of the White House, through historically significant rooms including the Situation Room, where many major decisions that changed the world have been made since the Cold War; the Red Room, where Eleanor Roosevelt held press events with women journalists, back when they were excluded from press briefings; and, of course, the world-famous Oval Office.
Buckingham Place has been the official residence of the reigning monarch of Britain since 1837. It is currently the home of Queen Elizabeth II, where she stays for most of the year. Official events, meetings with heads of state and government officials, as well as receptions also take place here. This virtual tour on the British Royal Family’s website takes you through the various halls and rooms of the palace, going up the Grand Staircase, and into the Throne Room, as well as the White and Blue Drawing Rooms.
More than just the home of the Mona Lisa, the Louvre is France’s national art museum and is home to the richest art collection in the world. This massive assortment includes paintings from French, Dutch, Italian, and Flemish painters dating back to the 15th century, items that once belonged to French royalty, and artifacts and art from the ancient Greeks, Romans, Egyptians, and Mesopotamians. For those visiting the Louvre from their browsers, their website offers virtual tours that take you through their exhibition rooms and grand hallways. And if you still want a taste of what it’s like to see a world-famous painting in its home, a VR experience of the Mona Lisa is also available.
Mount Everest Base Camp
Did you know that it takes about two months to climb Mount Everest, the world’s tallest peak? Before ascending the mountain, climbers must make a 12-day trek to the Everest Base Camp on foot from the town of Lukla. The trail to Everest Base Camp is now available on Google Street View for everyone in the world to see, thanks to a team of four Googlers who made the trip in 2011 and decided to capture images of the trail to share on Google Maps.