Are you getting tired of being cooped up because of COVID? There is a lot of things we can do online! Although we can’t go to places in person, it is still important to keep our horizons open and keep our spirits up during this unusual time! Here is a curated list of websites that function as field trips. From museums to monuments and from A to Z (aquariums to zoos), use this list to help keep yourself centered until we meet again!
You may be stuck at home, but that doesn’t mean that you can’t still enjoy the amazing works of art that some of the most famous museums in the world have on exhibit. Many of these virtual museum tours for kids are almost as good as the real thing, as they offer 360-degree views in locations throughout the museums, and the best part is that there are no crowds blocking your view!
- Frida Kahlo Museum: With its 360-degree views, you can explore every corner of Frida Kahlo’s home and her artwork throughout the brightly colored “Casa Azul” (Blue House).
- The National Gallery of Art: These children’s video tours allow kids to learn more about the background and composition of 50 select pieces of art.
- National Constitution Center: This virtual museum experience allows you to explore both present and past exhibitions on topics like Alexander Hamilton and the constitutional conflicts of the Civil War.
- Museum of Science: The whole family can learn more about STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) through #MOSatHome’s fun livestreamed presentations.
- The Vatican Museum: Have you always wondered what the inside of the Vatican looks like? Find out with these 360-degree virtual tours of nine different rooms at the Vatican, include the Sistine Chapel. Vatican Parent Note: Don’t miss the beauty and grandeur of the Sistine Chapel! Also, please be aware that there are classical nude statues in the “New Wing.”
- National Baseball Hall of Fame: Fans of all ages will appreciate this Safe at Home virtual content that allows them to learn baseball’s history and explore the museum from afar. You can register for one of their free virtual field trips through their website.
- The National Museum of Computing: Explore the world’s largest collection of working historic computers through 3D and virtual curated tours. This online experience strives to be interactive, educational, and engaging for the whole family.
- Boston Children’s Museum: Your children can go on a virtual “walking” tour of all three floors of the museum to see all of their fun exhibits here.
- Google Arts & Culture: This compendium of virtual art galleries, artful activities, and fun with augmented reality is as much a field trip as it is an art class. Children and adults alike will have fun using their imagination to give famous works of art and landmarks their own creative spin and taking a tour of some of the most well-known pieces of art in the world.
Quite a few zoos around the United States have chosen to set up live camera feeds of their animal enclosures so that people from around the world can tune in at any time to see what these amazing animals are up to and how they like to spend their day. There is so much that can be learned just from watching how animals interact with each other, people, and their surroundings! Which animal cam are you most excited to watch?
- San Diego Zoo: Through their live cams you can see what various animals at the zoo are up to at any time of day. This zoo offers an ape cam, elephant cam, hippo cam, koala cam, tiger cam, and a variety of other animal live cams.
- Animal Adventure Park: The zoo’s resident giraffe, April, became famous when her pregnancy and birth were livestreamed and tens of thousands of people around the world tuned in to watch. The zoo now offers a daily livestream of April with her newest calf as well as other giraffes at the zoo. Animal Adventure Park Parent Note: The animal webcams are hosted on YouTube so almost every click takes you off of the Park’s site.
- Atlanta Zoo: Here, you can access the zoo’s live Panda Cam 24/7 to watch the daily goings-on in the panda enclosure.
- Bronx Zoo: The best of the Bronx Zoo, the Central Park Zoo, the Queens Zoo, the Prospect Park Zoo, and the New York Aquarium can be found through this Virtual Zoo, which can be accessed daily from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Eastern time.
- Houston Zoo: Through their selection of live cams, you can watch a variety of animals, from big ones like elephants roaming their habitat to tiny ones like leafcutter ants busily working. You can even watch the zookeepers feed the giraffes via the feeding platform cam!
- Reid Park Zoo: The Reid Park Zoo is another that has daily live animal cams set up on select enclosures. They, too, have elephant and giraffe cams, but you’re also able to watch the grizzly bears in their enclosure as well as lions and lemurs.
- Smithsonian National Zoo: Visit a handful of the National Zoo’s animals, such as cheetah cubs, lions, giant pandas, elephants, and naked mole rats via their live animal webcams. Their website includes a variety of educational activities, classes, and webinars that can be done at home.
- Wapusk National Park Polar Bears: These polar bear cams are streaming live 24/7 from the Wapusk National Park in Manitoba, Canada, which is home to one of the largest concentrations of polar bear maternity dens in the world.
How does an aquarium virtual field trip sound? Zoos aren’t the only ones livestreaming their animals for the world to see; many aquariums have also set up live cams in some of their most popular aquatic displays to show off their underwater worlds in a new way.
- The National Aquarium: Take a “self-guided” virtual tour of the National Aquarium as you explore a variety of aquatic animals and habitats.
- Monterey Bay Aquarium: This aquarium offers a variety of live cams; watch the daily goings-on of a variety of animals through their coral reef cam, aviary cam, sea otter cam, shark cam, and more!
- Seattle Aquarium: This aquarium offers a 30-minute-long virtual field trip on their YouTube page, some of which is led by an underwater diver at the aquarium.
- Maritime Aquarium: This aquarium is offering 60-minute livestreamed virtual programs of some of their most popular educational programs each week. All of the programs require registration through their website, and some of the programs are offered entirely in Spanish.
- Georgia Aquarium’s Ocean Voyager: Here, you can access a live cam at the Georgia Aquarium’s Ocean Voyager gallery, which is home to sharks, manta rays, and thousands of other fish. You can also check other webcams to see their beluga whales, piranhas, sea lions, penguins, and more.
- SeaWorld: The SeaWorld@Home program is full of aquatic fun for the whole family, including animal coloring books and crafts, first-person videos of their most popular rides, and live cams for a variety of animal habitats.
Fun on the farm can be had virtually, too! These online field trips to farms around the country will give students a firsthand look at how a variety of different modern-day farms operate and how food gets to the grocery store, and some even encourage them to get into gardening.
- American Egg Board: The AEB partnered with Discovery Education to bring Virtual Egg Farm Field Trips into the classroom for students to explore and learn about egg farms. They offer field trips designed for students in K-5 and 6-8 or anyone who is interested in learning more about how egg farms operate.
- Bright Farms: This virtual field trip is great for any students, teachers, or parents who are looking to learn more about indoor farming and the process of how food gets from the farm to the grocery store.
- Farm Food 360: With 11 different farms to choose from, there’s plenty to see and learn about in this collection of virtual tours. Sit back and watch how things are run on animal farms from beef to chicken to pig, how a grain farm or feed mill operates, and even behind the scenes at an apple orchard.
Ignite students’ love of space through these virtual field trips that explore nearby planets, the moon, and even life aboard the International Space Station.
- Mars: Kids and adults alike will be wowed as they explore the surface of Mars with this 360-degree experience recorded by NASA’s Curiosity rover.
- Tour of the Moon: NASA also created a virtual tour of the moon, which visits a number of sites that were chosen to show off different lunar terrain features. This virtual tour was filmed in 2011 by the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter and has been re-created in 4K resolution for a truly amazing visual experience.
- International Space Station: Discover what life is really like living in space on these International Space Station tours, another great virtual field trip option brought to you by NASA. The European Space Agency also offers a narrated 3D tour of the ISS.
- Johnson Space Center: Boeing and Discover Education teamed up to offer this exclusive virtual field trip that goes behind the scenes at the Johnson Space Center in Houston, Texas.
- Stellarium Web: Learn about stars near and far with this mobile app that allows you to explore thousands of stars, find planets, and watch natural wonders like a solar eclipse. Using your location, it can even show the constellations in the night sky above you.
- Slime in Space: Kids are sure to enjoy this virtual field trip to the space station to see how slime reacts to being in space. The astronauts even play a game of slime ping-pong!
Historical Sites and Landmarks
History is fun with these virtual field trips to some of the most famous landmarks and historical sites across the world. You’ll have the chance to take a virtual walk through iconic buildings you otherwise wouldn’t have the chance to see and get up close and personal with past presidents.
- Buckingham Palace: These virtual tours allow you to explore the history of the most iconic rooms in Buckingham Palace, including the White Drawing Room, the Blue Drawing Room, the Throne Room, and even the Grand Staircase.
- Ellis Island: Take a virtual field trip to Ellis Island to see one of the most recognized symbols of hope, the Statute of Liberty, through the eyes of the many immigrants who arrived here between 1892 and 1954.
- Mount Rushmore: Get up close and personal with the four American presidents who are carved into Mount Rushmore with this virtual tour that offers 360-degree views from various viewpoints around the landmark, including one that puts you directly underneath Teddy Roosevelt’s chin.
- Mount Vernon: With just a few clicks, you’ll be able to explore the home of the first president of the United States. George Washington lived in the home his father built for 45 years, both before and briefly after his presidency.
- Plimoth Plantation: These virtual field trip videos are great for students of all ages and show what life was like for both Pilgrims and indigenous people. You can also explore a replica of the Mayflower, which carried the Pilgrims on their voyage across the ocean.
- Ancient Egypt: Discover the history of ancient Egypt through a 3D temple reconstruction. Explore pyramids and temples, hear stories of the pharaohs of Egypt, and learn about mummification here.
- The Great Wall of China: Take a virtual tour of one of the wonders of the world and explore the more than 3,000 miles through northern China that make up the Great Wall of China.
- Easter Island: Explore the sights and sounds of the island that these mysterious megaliths are located on, learn about the first inhabitants, and see how people were able to move these stone giants.
- HistoryView Virtual Tours: Bring historical sites and museums from around the world right to your home with this HistoryView VR collection of virtual field trips. A VR headset is not required to use this program; it will also work on a tablet or Chromebook.
Parks and Nature
Parks containing natural wonders like volcanoes and caves may be closed to visitors, but in the virtual world, they’re always ready for visitors. Check out this list of interactive virtual field trips to some of nature’s most amazing sights.
- Volcano Hazards: Click on and learn about any of the 169 potentially active volcanoes through this interactive map brought to you by the USGS Volcano Hazards Program.
- Nature Lab: Offered by the Nature Conservancy, this program was researched and designed for a young audience and classroom use. Their program has content geared toward those from ages 5 to 18 and has ten virtual field trips to choose from.
- Yellowstone National Park: You’ll get the chance to tour the main attractions in America’s oldest national park on this virtual field trip. You’ll get the chance to virtually explore sites like the Mammoth Hot Springs and the Mud Volcano. The Old Faithful live cam is always a fun part of the park to view.
- The Great Lakes: Choose from three different virtual field trips to learn more about the lakes’ coastal wetlands, algae that grows in them, and the oldest and largest residents of the Great Lakes region, the lake sturgeon.
While these virtual tours didn’t fit in one of the previous categories, they’re too interesting not to share! From music to history to even seeing how candy is made, there’s something for everyone here.
- Discovery Education: These virtual field trips are a great way for educators to share incredible experiences and places with students, from learning more about the history of the White House to a behind-the-scenes look at the Tech for Global Good event and even a Body Positivity virtual field trip.
- 360 Cities: As the world’s largest collection of stock 360-degree images and videos, created by a worldwide community of expert VR photographers, 360 Cities can take you on a virtual field trip to every corner of the world and everywhere in between.
- M&Ms Factory Tour: Kids will love watching how one of their favorite candies is made with this virtual tour of the M&M factory, hosted by the Food Network.
- Recycling Simplified: These virtual field trips are a great way to teach students about the importance of recycling by seeing how a recycling center and a modern landfill operate. There are lessons designed for students from third through 12th grades.
- Birthplaces of Music: This interactive virtual field trip through the history of music puts a focus on four of the most popular music genres: classical, jazz, rock ’n’ roll, and country. It examines the birthplace of each and how it played a part in shaping music history.
- Turn Back the Clock: Originally a museum display at Chicago’s Museum of Science, Turn Back the Clock is now for anyone across the world to explore. This virtual tour will take you through the past seven decades to the dawn of the nuclear age.