With the world practicing self-isolation and social distancing amid the COVID-19 pandemic, all individuals in the US have been urged to remain inside their homes. It’s easy to start to feel worn down by the mundane nature of life at home. Luckily, there is no shortage of free, virtual experiences to partake in. From learning new skills to exploring new places, the internet is your oyster!
1. You can access virtual tours of over 2500 museums and galleries around the world
Google Arts & Culture teamed up with famous museums and galleries to bring everyone virtual tours and online exhibits of some of the most world-renowned art. Start with these 12 selections.
2. Stream handpicked past performances of the Metropolitan Opera
With the doors closed to the public, the Met will stream past performances of the Live in HD series each night right from the organization’s website. The performances will go live at 7:30pm E.T and will remain active for 20 hours. See what’s on deck for tonight.
3. Tune into livestreamed concerts while social distancing
NPR Music compiled a list of live audio and video streams from around the world, categorized by date and genre, with links to streaming platforms such as Facebook and Youtube. The list is updated as more musicians announce their plans.
4. Keep your mind busy with brain games
Brain training games may help improve your memory, response time and logic skills. Very Well Mind shares a list of fun and engaging online puzzles. Take a look and start improving your mental fitness.
5. Indulge in free e-books and audiobooks
If you’ve already read through your personal collection of paperback books, consider turning to digital options. Publishers and libraries are offering access to a large number of e-books and audiobooks you can download on your tablet, computer or phone. Here’s a roundup of where you can find free books and listens from home in the weeks ahead.
6. Get active from the comfort of your home
During social isolation, it is essential that we maintain our health and stay active while at home. Fitness studios are offering discounts on their services so you can stream workout classes from your computer or phone. One in particular, Bold, that caters to older adults is offering a 30 day premium trial for free.
7. Take a class from an ivy league school for free
Colleges like Harvard and Yale are offering free online classes in a variety of subjects through platforms like Coursera and EdX. Learn more about the courses available.
8. Get outside without going outside
Tour the United States’ national parks thanks to Google Earth, including the Grand Canyon and Yosemite. Check out a full list of the parks you can tour virtually.
9. Pay a visit to some furry friends
Zoos and aquariums including the San Diego Zoo and Monterey Bay Aquarium are livestreaming their animals in their enclosures. Here’s a full list of animal livestreams and pre-recorded footage.
10. Watch a Broadway show you’ve been wanting to see
Although Broadway is closed, you can still experience wonderful theater from home. Stream classic shows like “The King and I” or “Cats” through Broadway HD which offers a 7 Day Free Trial.
11. Brush up on your photography skills
Get inspired while learning from the best. Nikon Live is offering tips from professionals at with livestreamed presentations and lessons. Browse videos on their website.
12. Learn new skills in the kitchen
Being stuck at home is the perfect time to master your cooking skills, with some virtual guidance. Michelin-star chef, Massimo Bottura hosts online cooking classes on his Instagram in a show he calls ‘Kitchen Quarantine’. Food Network also offers a 30 Day Free Trial of online cooking classes.
13. Take the trip of a lifetime from the comfort of your couch
Google’s Arts & Culture allows you to take virtual tours of landmarks from far corners of the world. You can explore wonders such as the Taj Mahal in New Delhi, India; the Eiffel Tower in Paris, France; or even the Sydney Opera House in Australia.
14. Get started on a new craft project
With extra time on your hands, devote it to a new project. Search your local craft shop’s website to see if they have any free tutorials and put in an order for supplies delivery. Stich & Story is offering an online knit-along and free knitting patterns.
15. Download NASA’s mobile app and tour its facilities
Ever wonder what it’s like to be an astronaut? NASA is offering a tour of its educational facility via its free Space Center Houston app.