The global crisis of 2020 has shifted a lot of our habits, created many new normals and is redefining things we traditionally accepted as more physical in nature, like exploring and discovering.
So, keeping with “looking on the bright side” of things, you can now virtually visit all the great museums of the world for free. Many of them have enhanced and updated their websites to allow us to explore and discover our world heritage art and culture and learn about the history surrounding them from our computers, pads and phones. So how about some bragging rights of visiting all the great museums of the world all in one day? You can and that will impress everyone! Most of them have a variety of online galleries, audio tours, virtual visiting (the actual rooms and halls of the physical building), digital resources, YouTube channel videos, blogs, social media engagement and more.
So, just pretend you have a front of the line pass which gets you into all the museums for free. Better yet, pretend they’ve opened up the great museums of the world just for you privately, there will be no crowds to deal with and no waiting in lines to go to the bathroom or to get a snack!
Here’s my list of 10 great museums of the world to visit virtually. For some, you may need to choose to translate to English, which is usually located on the top right of your screen/website page.
The British Museum London, England
https://www.britishmuseum.org/ Its permanent collection of some eight million works is among the largest and most comprehensive in existence, having been widely sourced during the era of the British Empire. Famous for the Rosetta Stone and the Cat Mummies.
The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York
By Arad – Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=2105925
https://www.metmuseum.org/ It’s the largest art museum in the United States. With 6,953,927 visitors to its three locations in 2018, it was the third most visited art museum in the world. Famous for its extensive number of gorgeous European art from the 13th to the 19th centuries.
The Louvre Museum, Paris France
https://www.louvre.fr/ It’s the world’s largest art museum and a historic monument in Paris, France. Famous for the Mona Lisa and Venus of Milo. Note: They haven’t done a great job making a virtual visit easy and user friendly. But, basically from the home page, at the top click on “Tours and Activities” and then “Course to Print” and then you’ll see 32 courses, or virtual categories that you can go into and explore.
Hermitage Museum, St. Petersburg, Russia
https://www.hermitagemuseum.org The second-largest art museum in the world, it was founded in 1764 when Empress Catherine the Great acquired an impressive collection of paintings from the Berlin merchant Johann Ernst Gotzkowsky. I’m enjoying their 5-hour professionally shot iPhone video tour here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xweWJSPmYLM&feature=youtu.be
The most famous of the buildings is the Winter Palace, designed by Bartolommeo Rastrelli, and which was the residence the Russian emperors until 1917.
The Prado Museum, Madrid, Spain
https://www.museodelprado.es/ Widely considered to have one of the world’s finest collections of European art dating from the 12th century to the early 20th century, based on the former Spanish Royal Collection. The numerous works by Francisco Goya, the single most extensively represented artist, the best-known work on display at the museum is Las Meninas by Velázquez.
The Acropolis Museum, Athens Greece
https://www.theacropolismuseum.gr/ Archaeological museum focused on the findings of the archaeological site of the Acropolis of Athens. The museum was built to house every artifact found on the rock and on the surrounding slopes, from the Greek Bronze Age to Roman and Byzantine Greece.
The Vatican Museums, Italy
Their website isn’t very user friendly for virtual tours, but here’s a recent piece from Forbes.com that will streamline your virtual visit: “The Vatican Museum offers a variety of virtual tours, including one devoted to the Sistine Chapel— The lavishly frescoed Raphael’s Rooms are another must- see. And since this troubled year coincides with the blockbuster Raphael exhibit at the Scuderie del Quirinale marking the 500th anniversary of the artist’s death (it is now closed because of the health crisis), make sure to take in the online version of the show.”
The Uffizi Gallery, Italy
https://www.uffizi.it/gli-uffizi – A prominent art museum located adjacent to the Piazza della Signoria in the Historic Centre of Florence in the region of Tuscany, Italy. Best known for the Madonna Enthroned with Child and Angels and Adoration of the Magi.
The Smithsonian Institution, Washington, DC
https://www.si.edu/ The world’s biggest museum and research facility, with 19 museums and galleries, as well as theNational Zoological Park . Best known as a guide to the most fascinating aspects of our world. The museum collection contains more than 150 million objects, works of art and specimens altogether.
Pergamon Museum, Germany
https://www.smb.museum/museen-und-einrichtungen/pergamonmuseum/home.html The most popular museum in Berlin and Is famous for housing art treasures such as the Pergamon Altar and the Babylonian Ishtar Gate.
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