Thanks to the pandemic, the majority of us are stuck at home. All our travel plans for this year were completely ruined. However, flights are going in and out of the country. Who in their right mind would risk getting COVID-19 to travel? As much as we’d love to be back on a plane to experience other countries, now isn’t the right time.
We have to stay at home to protect ourselves and—of course—other people. The longer this virus is around and the more it spreads, the less likely you’ll be able to travel any time soon. So, do the right thing and stay at home. Besides, you can still experience different countries without actually visiting them. Here are eight ways you can travel without leaving the safety of your home:
Watch documentaries or vlogs
There are plenty of documentaries on Netflix and vlogs on YouTube that you could watch. Some of the best travel documentaries and docu-series on Netflix include Dark Tourist, The Kindness Diaries, and Jack Whitehall: Travels with My Father. There are also food travel documentaries such as Somebody Feed Phil, Street Food, and Ugly Delicious—to name a few. There are tons to choose from not only on Netflix but all over the internet. All you have to do is search. The same goes for YouTube vlogs and travel channels.
Read about them in books
If you’d rather read about places, there are tons of travel literature to choose from. Here are 10 of the best travel books, according to The Guardian:
Learn their language
What best way to experience a culture than to learn their language? Learning the language of a country you’d like to visit can be helpful in the future. It won’t only make getting around easier. But the locals will actually appreciate you more. It shows that you have enough respect to try and learn their language.
Learning simple greetings or questions in their language is enough. You don’t have to be fluent (unless you want to be). You can try to learn different languages on an application called Duolingo. It’s free and available for Android and iOS. There are tons of other online learning courses to choose from as well.
Recreate their dishes and drinks
Let’s be honest; learning a new language is difficult. Learning how to cook their dishes and make their drinks is much easier—and tastier too. Food is a great way to experience another country’s culture. Why do you think there are so many food travel documentaries nowadays? Because if there’s one thing that can bring nations together, it’s food.
Listen to and learn their music
Another way to understand another country’s culture is through their music. You’ll see a lot of their personality and characteristics in how they compose and play their music. Why not listen to some of their music on Spotify? If you want more out of the experience, why not try to learn how to play their music as well? Take some music lessons from the music connection conservatory. They can teach you how to play every kind of instrument there is—even voice.
Send postcards to strangers around the world
Want to connect with people all over the world and collect postcards in the process? There’s this website called Postcrossing that allows you to send and receive postcards from all around the world. Get to hear what it’s like to live in different countries from the people who actually live there.
Take a virtual tour
Because of the pandemic, tons of museums and other landmarks have created virtual tours for people to experience at home (for free). Although doing the tour in VR would be more realistic, you don’t need VR for this. View them on your smartphone or other smart devices that are compatible with the tour.
Watch their local movies or series
Get to know more about their culture and life experiences by watching their local films and series. Don’t worry if it’s in another language. That’s what subtitles are for.
The pandemic isn’t permanent. It’ll end someday. Vaccines are being made, and pretty soon, we’ll all be able to travel again. But while we wait for that time to come, we have to be responsible. We can’t travel if we’re sick or if the country we’d like to visit is also full of sick people. We all must make a collective effort to do our part in keeping each person safe from the virus. If staying at home and social distancing will help stop the spread of the virus, we should do it. The sooner this thing ends, the sooner we get to travel again.