Jet Setting: Out, Virtual Travel: In

Today, scrolling through social media, it’s safe to assume that any photos of friends from college frolicking through the South of France, or hitting the slopes in Argentina are sure to be captioned something like “Better days #tbt” or “BC: Before Corona.” With the closing curtain quickly encroaching on summer days, and entire cities still under lockdown, it is comforting to know that adventures and travel remain just a click away. From livestreamed concerts by award winning artists, and Broadway stars, to virtual museum visits, and hikes through national parks, there has never been a time where global travel was as accessible as it is today. Thanks to VR cameras which have captured 360-degree views of some of the top tourist destinations, many sites can still be experienced. One minute, viewers might be riding Expedition Everest at Disney’s Magic Kingdom, and the next, wandering through La Galleria Nazionale in Rome. While a vacation from their couch may not be exactly what travelers had mind in mind this summer, virtual experiences have offered alternatives for many whose summer plans have been cancelled.

“When it became clear my April trip to Paris wasn’t going to happen because of the coronavirus pandemic, I decided to plan an entire day to recreate the magic of the City of Love and bring the trip to my one-bedroom apartment in New Jersey.” – Anika Reed, USA Today Journalist

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