Culture buffs can now get their fix through virtual tours offered by some of the most prestigious museums in the world — perfect for these COVID-19 times.
If you are a museum lover, spending half a day or more at the Louvre or the Met would be your idea of heaven on earth. While you won’t be able to do that physically for a while due to travel restrictions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, you can still visit some of the most famous museums in the world — from the comfort of your armchair.
The Louvre, located in Paris, is the most-visited museum in the world. While a trip to the City of Romance may have to be delayed for now, the Louvre has decided to deliver its galleries to the world by placing them online. In fact, the museum has organised several themed virtual tours of its exhibits, such as Power Plays and The Body in Movement. Other resources available include a closer look at some of the masterpieces housed in this massive former palace such as the Mona Lisa, arguably the world’s most famous painting. This would be quite impossible on a physical visit, given the crowds that constantly swarm around this painting by Leonardo da Vinci.The Metropolitan Museum of Art
Located on Fifth Avenue in New York City, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, referred to as “the Met” by aficionados, is one of the largest art museums in the world. It is home to ancient statues, paintings by the French masters, as well as a massive collection of American art. Closed due to COVID-19, it is offering a number of online features that will allow homebound visitors access to its more than two million works of art. Among these are MetCollects, which introduces recent additions to the museum’s collections; The Artist Project, a series of videos that show artists giving their personal impressions of the Met’s art pieces; and audio guides that take visitors through the Met’s key exhibitions and locations.
The Vatican Museums
Always wanted to view Michaelangelo’s masterpiece, the paintings on the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel? Now you can, with The Vatican City museums’ virtual tour. Its website offers tours of seven of its 26 museums: the Pio Clementino Museum, the Chiaramonti Museum, the New Wing, Raphael’s Rooms, the Niccoline Chapel, the Room of the Chiaroscuri and, of course, the Sistine Chapel. Wander around the rest of Vatican City with a You Visit tour, which lets you take in St Peter’s Basilica and Square with a tour guide narrating each interactive space.
Located in Amsterdam, the Rijksmuseum houses a head-spinning collection of art and historical objects across 80 galleries, and is renowned for its many pieces from the Dutch school of painting. The museum’s interactive platform brings masterpieces such as Rembrandt’s The Jewish Bride and Vermeer’s The Milkmaid into every living room across the world. Rijksmuseum Masterpieces Up Close allows visitors to go through 18 Dutch masterpieces at their own pace — the programme tells the story behind each artwork, focusing on the artistic nuances involved in their creation.