Virtual Tours: Visit The Met and Other Museums from Your Couch

Museums are an essential part of culture and knowledge. Unfortunately, not everyone has the opportunity to visit one. Thanks to technology, many museums now offer virtual tours.

No matter if they serve as areas for art, history, or science, museums have a wealth of knowledge for both students and curiosity seekers.

Here are five museums you could visit from the comfort of your couch.

The Met

The  Metropolitan Museum of Art is one of New York City’s most popular destinations. Its three locations tend to be heavily visited on regular days. Now, for those who can’t make the trip to Manhattan, the Met’s 360-Degree Project allows them to get an idea of their current displays.

Six videos provide a 360-degree display of the Met’s art and architecture that immerses the viewer in the environment. In fact, they can see things average visitors can’t. For example, visiting displays when the museum is closed or getting a birds-eye view of various exhibits. With over 11 million views, this virtual tour is top-rated.

The J. Paul Getty Museum

On the opposite coast is another famous art museum. It’s the J. Paul Getty Museum based in Los Angeles. With works dating from the eighth to the 20th centuries, the collection spans numerous eras of creativity.

In a joint project with Google, people can view nearly 16,000 pieces from the museum’s holdings. This includes artwork from hundreds of prominent creators. Among them are Rembrandt, Renoir, and Van Gogh.

The Van Gogh Museum

Those who want to focus exclusively on the works of Vincent Van Gogh can do so from the comfort of their own living rooms. Amsterdam’s Van Gogh Museum brings his vast collection of works to your home.

Van Gogh Museum Virtual ToursSource: Shutterstock
Source: Shutterstock

The Van Gogh Museum uses multiple media forms and outlets to deliver their experience to virtual visitors. You’ll find stories about Van Gogh, and access his thoughts and beliefs through his letters. You could also get daily pieces of information about him via Facebook and Instagram.

Of course, visitors can wander through the museum’s displays via a 360-degree virtual tour. This allows them to see his famous pieces and those that may be unique for the visitor.

The Art Institute of Chicago

Like the J. Paul Getty Museum, the Art Institute of Chicago is also working with Google to display many of its works online. And it has hundreds of thousands to choose from. As of this writing, 600 pieces are available for virtual tours.

Among them are items very familiar to art-goers. For example, Edward Hopper’s Nighthawks from 1942 and At the Moulin Rouge from Toulouse-Lautrec. Also viewable online are photographs, like Chicago After the Chicago Fire from 1871 and sculptures that include Wilhelm Lehmbruck’s Bust of Kneeling Girl.

British Museum

London’s Britsh Museum spans the history of mankind. It is the home to many of the world’s most famous and rare artifacts. A good portion of them available for viewing via their virtual tours.

Set up as a timeline, visitors scroll through many years and eras to find items of interest. Some of the items on display are a double pottery vessel from 3000 BC, a stone figure of a Brahma created in 1000 AD, and a shaman spirit helper from the 1700s. You can also find information on Egyptian mummies and the Rosetta Stone.

These are only a handful of museums offering virtual tours. Google’s Art & Culture group has paired up with thousands of venues across the globe to display their wares for virtual visitors. So, make sure you spend some time viewing these amazing works when you need a break from everyday life. 

When you visit museums reguarly, you might even enjoy these benefits!


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