11 Virtual walking tours of stunning cities—to see the world without *actually* leaving home


By Ronn Tan

11 Virtual walking tours of stunning cities—to see the world without *actually* leaving home

We’re living under really different circumstances right now; in fact, the entire world is. As we continue to work together and unite against the COVID-19 pandemic, many of us are now practising social distancing and staying in. After all, flattening the curve is the goal at the moment! As for Malaysians, we have the Movement Control Order that is slated to end on 14 April 2020 and it’s clear that is a situation that’s new to many of us—especially when it comes to travelling.

Now that we’re encouraged to stay at home and our travel plans are halted/suspended, one way to bring back some normalcy into our lives is *drum roll* virtual walking tours. It’s a great way to see the world without having to physically be there. They are probably the most authentic or enjoyable way to experience a city or landmark during this *bizarre* situation we’re in. Watch on your bed, on your couch, on the floor—as long as you’re at home.

*By the way, these virtual tours were taken before the novel coronavirus outbreak*

1. Ibiza, Spain

If you have never been to Ibiza and the infamous island in Spain has been on your bucket list for awhile now, here’s a virtual walking tour for you to check out. You can spot its old town, the beaches, and the farmlands. Don’t forget about the iconic white and blue buildings as well as beautiful cobblestone streets. You will also be able to see the Mediterranean Sea. This virtual walking tour runs for about 90 minutes.

2. Amsterdam, The Netherlands

What comes to mind when you think of Amsterdam? The poffertjes? The canals? Or the stunning architecture? In this virtual walking tour, you will be able to see them all—and more! You will take a virtual stroll on Brouwersgracht; one of the most popular streets in the city. You will walk by waterfront warehouses and houseboats as well as visit the Jordaan neighbourhood (where Anne Frank’s House is located).

3. Hanoi, Vietnam

Let’s take a detour from Europe for a bit and head to Hanoi. This virtual walking tour brings you to the Old Quarter—a popular hotspot in the capital city of Vietnam. Experience the busy scenes as you take a stroll along the ancient town. You can even play a game where you drink a glass of water every time you spot elements of its colonial heritage.

4. Tokyo, Japan

Yes, the 2020 Tokyo Olympics has been postponed to 2021. Yes #2—Tokyo is one of the best cities to visit in the world! Fortunately, we have virtual walking tours to bring us there. This tour places you in Tokyo’s Shinjuku area. Here, you can easily immerse yourself in the Tokyo way of life as you take a stroll along the streets and alleys. There are also virtual walking tours of other Tokyo districts such as Ebisu, Shibuya, Akihabara, and Ginza.

5. Vancouver, Canada

Vancouver is one of the best places to visit in Canada—and it’s perfect all year round. That’s why we recommended the Canadian city as one of the travel destinations to check out in 2020. Unfortunately for us, travelling is not possible at the moment. In this virtual walking tour, you will be able see the beautiful landscapes and scenery of Vancouver. This tour covers sights such as the Vancouver Waterfront, Village Dock, Telus World of Science, Canada Place, Voyage Plaza, Coal Harbour, the Canadian Trail, and Water Street. It’s definitely a great way to find serenity right now!

6. Dubai, United Arab Emirates

It’s apparent that Dubai is on many of our wishlists. This virtual tour takes you to the iconic Burj Khalifa. You will be walking along the Burj Khalifa Lake and Dubai Fountains—the largest choreographed fountain system in the world. You will also be taken on a stroll on the Souk Al Bahar Bridge.

7. Paris, France

Ah, Paris! Many of us would love to be in Paris right now—not under #corona circumstances, of course. This three-hour virtual walking tour is probably the best way to visit the city now. Spanning a total of 19 kilometres, you will see sights such as the Louvre, Notre Dame, Champs-Élysées, Arc de Triomphe, the Eiffel Tower, the Pont Alexandre III Bridge, the Grand Palace, and more. Bliss across the board!

8. Petra, Jordan

Ever thought of visiting one of the oldest cities in the world to see its infamous rose-coloured buildings? You can now visit the site online! In this virtual walking tour, you will be taken on a journey from al-Siq (the ancient main entrance leading to the city) to the Treasury. The Petra Main Trail spans about eight kilometres.

9. Seoul, South Korea

If you’re one of many who decided to get tickets to South Korea after watching Crash Landing On You, this is a virtual tour for you. This tour takes you to the Myeong-dong area in Seoul—one of the busiest and most popular destinations in the city. In addition to the Myeongdong Cathedral and Myeongdong Nanta Theatre, you will also see street food carts, cosmetic and skincare shops, cafes, restaurants, and more. You can search for other districts in Seoul as well—such as Hongdae, Itaewon, and Gangnam.

10. Venice, Italy

It will be a crime to have a roundup of virtual tours and not include Venice. After all, it is one of the most beautiful cities in the world. Stroll along the streets and canals in this virtual walking tour—starting from St. Lucia Train Station to Campo San Geremia. Along the way, you will spot landmarks such as The Grand Canal, Rialto Bridge, St. Mark’s Basilica, Bridge of Sighs, Doge’s Palace, and more. This tour spans about 9.5 kilometres long.

11. Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

Wait, why is the capital of Malaysia on the list? With most of us stuck at home and being responsible citizens, we won’t be able to see a lot of the city in awhile. This virtual walking tour takes us down memory lane from Chinatown to the Twin Towers. Eventually, we will be able to go out again—when the dust settles. For now, let’s enjoy this walking tour.

Virtual walking tours are the best ways to see the world without having to physically be there. You get to experience all the sounds and sights. Travelling will be a norm again one day but social distancing and self-isolation should be practised right now. These suggestions are just starters—you can easily search for any city or landmark online. Now, that’s one thing to do at home! #StayHome.

For more fun things to do at home, visit this website.

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