7 American Cities Where Virtual Tourism is Thriving

Activities, Online Exclusives

Embark on curated museum tours, walk along sandy beaches and learn a new task through these digital adventures.

With most Americans under quarantine and traditional in-person tourism has temporarily halted, you might believe that it’s impossible to explore a new city. Thankfully, with innovate technology and a can-do spirit from DMOs and attractions across the country, there are countless ways to walk through a museum or admire historic architecture from the safety of your home. These eight American cities offer a diverse, free selection of tours to scratch your quarantine itch until self-isolation concludes.

Harley-Davidson Museum; Credit Visit Milwaukee

Harley-Davidson Museum; Credit Visit Milwaukee

Milwaukee, Wisconsin

The Cream City’s world-class museums and zoos are available to “tour” with click of a mouse. The Milwaukee Art Museum, famous for its Santiago Calatrava-designed pavilion, hosts video tours of various galleries as well as a podcast series hosted by curators that offers a glimpse into special collections. Meanwhile, ZooViewTV at the Milwaukee County Zoo offers livestreams of popular animal exhibits, and the Harley-Davidson Museum offers a virtual tour through its Facebook page.

Capital City/Lake Murray County, South Carolina

The beautiful Capital City/Lake Murray County region of South Carolina is conveniently and centrally located off Interstates I-77, I-20, I-26 in the heart of the Palmetto State. Learn more about this community with amazing art galleries, specialty shopping, outdoor recreation, family-friendly attractions and fabulous restaurants by checking out these fun, online activities.

From the comfort of your home, experience new adventures at the Zoo and Garden through Z-Learning—the wilder side of E-Learning. Weekdays at 10 a.m. EST, Riverbanks Zoo (riverbanks.org) will bring the zoo and garden to you through Facebook features (facebook.com/riverbankszoo) such as live interactions, behind-the-scenes peeks and activities you can do right at home. Z-Learning offers a new way of exploring and learning while creating connections and inspiring action that will have an everlasting impact on conservation.

Credit Visit Panama City Beach

Credit Visit Panama City Beach

Explore Northwest Florida

The region known as Northwest Florida is conveniently accessible via Interstate 10 offering a multitude of day trip options to not only beautiful beaches, but also the loveliest of activity-driven excursions as well. For now, you can view a spectacular slideshow capturing the turtle trail in Gulf County. Turtles have been visiting the Cape San Blas beaches since long before humans settled the area. The photos and educational value presented here are truly classroom worthy. Take a look at The Journey Begins Here and don’t forget the popcorn.

Take a virtual historical tour of Gulf County and see what’s special from the Lighthouse to state parks, the Dead Lakes, Tupelo Honey and more. You’ll come away armed with knowledge and thoughts of having traveled a bit, even though you haven’t left home. Also, from your home, enjoy virtual Panama City Beach experiences, from the sound of the waves to the dreamy destination properties you can visit later. Everything is perfectly situated in one place, making it easily accessible.

Lincoln Memorial; Credit Destination DC

Lincoln Memorial; Credit Destination DC

Washington, D.C.

The current health emergency hasn’t dampened the historic and educational spirit of the nation’s capital; nearly every major museum and site offers interactive activities for virtual visitors. Begin with a digital stroll along the National Mall, where visitors can learn about the Washington Memorial, World War II Monument and Reflecting Pool. More virtual tours await at the Museum of Natural History, where website visitors can stroll through anthropological and biological exhibits, and the Supreme Court, where visitors can embark on a 360-degree tour of court’s justice chambers and exterior art.

George Washington’s Mount Vernon, located in Virginia across the Potomac, offers an virtual sunset tour where visitors can explore the property’s buildings and learn about the legacy of America’s first president by clicking on paintings, tools and furniture. Similar is the tour offered by the National Aquarium in Baltimore, where you can click on various tanks to learn about the species is houses.

Martin County, Florida

Martin County is located on Florida’s Treasure Coast just 45 minutes from Palm Beach International Airport, an hour from Fort Lauderdale Hollywood International Airport, 90 minutes from Miami International Airport and two hours from Orlando International Airport. Martin County TV offers engaging and educational series as well as one-off videos that will acquaint you with the area from your laptop, tablet or phone. Also, check out their YouTube channel for short, well-done videos that will bring smiles to your face. Need more? A collection of live web cams give a birds-eye view of what’s going on at the gorgeous beaches like Jensen Beach on Hutchinson Island, the House of Refuge and Bathtub Beach. The House of Refuge offers a cool live surf cam that viewers can actually take control of to have a more personal look around.

Visit Myrtle Beach

Visit Myrtle Beach

Myrtle Beach, South Carolina

Take a beach break anytime from anywhere with live webcams. View the beach, Boardwalk and Ocean Boulevard from the comfort of home.  In this age of “social distancing,” joining Myrtle Beach on social media for the best way to stay close to the beach.

Onslow County, North Carolina

Encompassing the areas of Richlands, Jacksonville, Camp Lejeune, North Topsail Beach, Sneads Ferry and Swansboro, Onslow County can be found off I-95, north of Wilmington and east of Raleigh and I-40.In an effort to promote social distancing, the Onslow County Museum is offering virtual tours of its exhibits and programs on their website. Check back often for new videos exploring different aspects of the museum’s galleries as well as educational family programs.

Have fun checking out new-each-morning videos from the rangers at Hammocks Beach State Park on their Facebook page. Each short nature clip will be educational and fun, including some links for resources and ideas for things you can do at home with kids.

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Featured Activity

Kansas City Zoo & Aquarium

Situated in the heart of Missouri, the Kansas City Zoo & Aquarium captivates visitors with a diverse array of creatures from land and sea. From the intriguing depths of the Sobela Ocean Aquarium, home to over 8,000 marine species, to the expansive grounds showcasing wildlife from across continents, it’s a celebration of nature’s marvels. A must-visit destination for a comprehensive zoological experience.

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