Mount Everest, Northern Lights, Avatar Mountains: Best ‘trips’ to take from your home with these virtual tours
From the Northern Lights of Norway to the misty forest park of Zhāngjiājiè, explore the world’s most brilliant natural wonders from the comfort of your home.Updated: Jun 23, 2020 12:11 IST
Are you bored in the house and in the house bored during this never-ending lockdown? Let’s face it, we all miss the freedom of being able to go outside whenever it suits us. But don’t let the lockdown rain on your parade of adventure. While you may not be able to soak your feet in the gushing waters of the Himalayas or experience the magic of the Northern Lights, thanks to technological advancement, you can still ‘experience’ a bit of the gorgeous sites around the world from the comfort of your home. Be it high quality images or virtual reality walk-throughs, do not miss out on anything the internet has to offer. From the numerous virtual tours being offered nowadays, here are our top picks for the natural wonders of the world which you can explore without having to pay for a flight.
Mount Everest, Nepal
The world’s highest mountain above sea level serves as the border between Nepal and China. It is located in the Mahalangur Himal sub-range of the Himalayas. The journey, even to base camp of this mountain is not an easy task meant for everyone. But with Google’s interactive map, you can now follow your own path of glory. The Everest base camp hosts close to 35,000 visitors annually. With the virtual tour you can explore the vast landscape that stretches for 8,848 metres and all the surrounding ranges that stretch from Pakistan to Bhutan, without the hassle of being swarmed by the crowd. Check out the virtual tour here.
The Northern Lights
This natural phenomenon has a special place on the bucket lists of all travel enthusiasts. Caused by the interaction between the electrically charged particles from the Sun and the Earth’s magnetic field, the Aurora Borealis is truly an extraordinary sight to behold. The Norwegian lights can be seen from various places on the northern hemisphere and now, with the aid of virtual tours, even from the comfort of your own home. This tour organised by the ‘Lights over Lapland’, takes you through the various forests and lakes and even includes a time lapse of the lights dancing in the sky with colours and hues the likes of which you have never seen before. Not having to slog in the cold is just an added benefit. Check out the virtual tour here.
Giants Causeway, Northern Ireland
Located in County Antrim on the north coast of Ireland, these naturally interlocked hexagonal rocks stretch for 4.8 kilometres. It has been declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO and rumour has it that the unusual rock formation is a result of a causeway to Scotland built by giants. In reality however they are formed by lava flowing into the sea. The National Trust, who own and manage most of the heritage site have organised a virtual tour to take you through the rocky beach at different times of the day for the gorgeous views. Check out the virtual tour here.
Namib Desert Dunes, Namibia
The Namib Desert stretches for the length of more than 2000 kilometres along the coast Angola, Namibia, and South Africa. The name Namib itself means vast. This contradiction of nature, a coastal desert hosts wondrous views of its pink and orangish sand. The 360-degree views showcase the tops of the highest sand peaks and images of mist rolling in between them. Check out the virtual tour here.
Zhāngjiājiè National Forest Park, China
The Zhāngjiājiè National Forest Park, pronounced Jaang-jyaa-jie, is a part of the Wulingyuan Scenic Area that covers 397.5 kilometres. It was recognised as China’s first national forest park. The park is known for its characteristic pillar like structures that are a result of erosion from water and ice. The hallelujah mountains in the Avatar films also draw inspiration from this national forest park. The 360-degree views of this natural phenomenon almost give one the feeling of flying through the landscape. The park has the iconic glass bridge and elevator, all of which can be explored through the virtual tour. Check out the virtual tour here.