Virtual Vacations You Can Take Straight From Your Couch

Brb, taking a tour of Buckingham Palace.

virtual vacations
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Stay-at-home orders have restricted most of our travel, but tapping into our wanderlust isn't entirely impossible. With a growing number of virtual experiences (and a solid wifi-connection), your home can be a portal to far-flung destinations. Take a virtual trek through Machu Picchu, uncover the royal rooms of Buckingham Palace, or grab a fruity umbrella drink for a few hours on the beaches of Aruba. Armchair jet-setting may just become your preferred method of travel. After all, no packing required.

Take a quick trip across the pond and find yourself inside the home of our favorite matriarch, Queen Elizabeth II. Upon entering the national treasure, you’ll have access to the Grand Staircase, the White and Blue Drawing Rooms, and the majestic Throne Room.

Visit Buckingham Palace

Stop at the Louvre and the Eiffel Tower

One bonus of virtual traveling? No lines to enter a city's most popular tourist destinations. During your virtual tour of Paris' famed art museum The Louvre, get up-close and personal with the Mona Lisa herself, and take a peek at the museum's alternate exhibition and gallery offerings. Afterwards, climb to the top of the Eiffel Tower thanks to Google Arts & Culture for panoramic Parisian views.

Visit the Louvre

Take a Trip to Japan

All you need is a smart phone to experience Japanese culture from your couch. Experience the colorful surroundings inside some of Japan's unique cafés and the bustle of Tokyo's largest gaming arcade. Afterwards, visit the Tokyo Tower, ride in a rickshaw, and visit a local sushi shop.

Visit Japan

Experience Disney World

You can still feel the joy of Mickey Mouse...even in quarantine. Take a ride on Frozen's Ever After at Epcot or take an under-the-sea journey alongside Ariel from The Little Mermaid. Visit Magic Kingdom, Disney's Animal Kingdom, and take a 360-degree tour of Walt Disney World complete with shows and hotels.

Visit Disney World

Explore Yellowstone National Park

Embark on a scenic virtual journey through Wyoming's Yellowstone National Park. Explore the Upper Geysers, various hot springs, even a mud volcano, all while learning about the park's history, terrain, and wildlife. This virtual experience is so informative, you can play tour guide on your next IRL visit. (Yes, you'll eventually make it there!)

Visit Yellowstone

Climb Machu Picchu

Take a trip to Peru to experience one of the new seven wonders of the worlds: the Incan ruins of Machu Picchu. In fact, those who suffer from altitude sickness may actually prefer the virtual route. Walk up to the highest point of the peak to explore the Temple of the Moon, peer out over the valley, and take in the Urubamba River. You can even spend one-on-one time with some of Machu Picchu's cutest locals, the Alpacas.

Visit Machu Picchu

Relax in Aruba

Get your dose of vitamin D with this virtual tour of The Happy Island—one of the Caribbean's most revisited destinations. Look out over white sand beaches and experience virtual windsurfing on the iconic turquoise blue waters. Alternatively, head into town to visit Aruba's famous landmarks and colorful Dutch architecture.

Visit Aruba

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Sara Holzman
Style Director

Sara Holzman is the Style Director for Marie Claire, where she's worked alongside the publication for eight years in various roles, ensuring the brand's fashion content continues to inform, inspire, and shape the conversation about fashion's ever-evolving landscape. With a degree from the Missouri School of Journalism, Sara is responsible for overseeing a diverse fashion content mix, from emerging and legacy designer profiles to reported features on the influence of social media on style and seasonal and micro trends across the world's fashion epicenters in New York, Milan, and Paris. Before joining Marie Claire, Sara held fashion roles at Conde Nast's Lucky Magazine and Self Magazine and was a style and travel contributor to Equinox's Furthermore website. Over her decade of experience in the fashion industry, Sara has helped guide each brand's style point of view, working alongside veteran photographers and stylists to bring editorial and celebrity photo shoots to fruition from start to finish. Sara currently lives in New York City. When she's not penning about fashion or travel, she’s at the farmer’s market, on a run, working to perfect her roasted chicken recipe, or spending time with her husband, dog, and cat. Follow her along at @sarajonewyork