Take a trip through some of the world’s greatest collections on these virtual museum and gallery tours

Are you stuck at home? 11 virtual tours of museums

When you may not be able to visit museums in-person, virtual exploration offers a great way to get your dose of culture and creativity.

When the global pandemic shut down admissions to the world’s spectacular museums, technology answered with a fantastic way for people to continue to experience their exhibits. Those who find themselves confined to their homes amid the quarantine and social distancing guidelines should be happy to hear that there are numerous virtual tours they can take of these top-tier museums.

Come experience some of these world-famous museums as though you were actually standing in the exhibit halls, and you can do it all without leaving the comfort of your bed. See these breathtaking works of art close up and give your brain a good dose of culture and creativity.

Although there are countless museums offering these wonderful virtual tours, we are going to highlight our top 11 favorites. Let these virtual tours take you from one end of the earth to the other as you take advantage of these technology-driven opportunities.

Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam

When you elect to tour this museum virtually, you will get to choose from 14 different multimedia tours as well as a number of different routes through the collections. If you are feeling truly inventive, you can even create your own route!

At the Rijksmuseum, you can explore a variety of Dutch artists, including masters like Rembrandt. You can also see collections from Asia alongside silver and porcelain objects that date back hundreds of years.

The British Museum in London

The British Museum, a world-class experience that has been setting the standards for museums for over two hundred years, continues to impress with its virtual tour options. Thanks to Google, you can step right into the museum and begin to tour the exhibits, taking in exhilarating works of art, such as the Rosetta stone and the Egyptian Sculpture Gallery.

You can also use the various virtual tours that the museum has created itself that you can select from its website. Choose from contemporary or classics, such as Michelangelo, and see collections from around the world.

The Museum even offers a behind the scenes podcast where you can hear from the scientists, artists, and curators that make this incredible museum possible.

The Musee D’Orsay in Paris

Through Google’s Arts and Culture, you can step into the famous Musee d'Orsay and forget that you are still confined to your home. Come and virtually appreciate famous works of art such as The Ballet Class by Edgar Degas and The Evening Air by Henri-Edmond Cross. You can explore the works of art based on the style of art as well as time period or popularity.

The National Gallery of Victoria in Melbourne

At the National Gallery of Victoria, you can step into the museum through interactive virtual tours. Each tour is self-guided and allows you to see and appreciate a wide range of styles and types of art. Explore Japanese Modernism or decide instead to look at the art found within fashion in the Collecting Comme exhibit. Explore indigenous art in another exhibit, or step into the worldview of the Australian photographer Polixeni Papapetrou through the Olympia photography exhibit.

While you explore all that the National Gallery of Victoria has to offer, you can click on the exhibit pages to learn more about this particular exhibit and then take a self-paced tour that lets you experience the art as though you were there in person.

The Picasso Museum in Barcelona

For those who want to experience the legendary artist, Picasso, there is no place like stepping into the Picasso Museum of Barcelona. You can use the virtual tour that the museum has set up to explore the major works of art found throughout the museum, learning more about the artist and his unique style. Since the museum is housed in Medieval buildings, this 360-degree tour also features some of the most fantastic architecture found in the city, which you will get to appreciate on your tour.

To make it even easier for art lovers to experience regular doses of Picasso, the museum has also created the hashtag #MuseuPicassoVirtual that you can follow to make even your Twitter feed a bit more cultured.

The National Palace Museum in Beijing

The National Palace Museum boasts a wealth of Chinese art and history as well as beautiful collections of pieces from other cultures and countries. You can step back in time to ancient Chinese creations to begin your exploration, or you can stick with the modern art collections.

The museum has created a number of different virtual tours, each organized around a particular theme. You can explore the Silk Road, the Garden of Compassion and Tranquility, treasures from Afghanistan, the art of Jewellery, and even clocks. Choose whichever tours pique your interests and transport yourself to Beijing.

The Benaki Museum in Athens

The Benaki Museum in Athens offers a fantastic view of Greek history and culture. The collections include Ancient Greek and Roman art, Byzantine art, paintings from Greek artists-- largely from the 19th and 20th centuries, and more.

With the virtual tour, you can access the floor plan of the museum and then scroll yourself through the museum, feeling as though you are exploring the halls in person. Since the tour is self-guided, feel free to spend as much time as you would like examining your favorite pieces and all that the Benaki Museum has to offer

The Museum of Modern Art in New York

Through Google’s Arts and Culture, you can step into the Museum of Modern Art and explore some of the most impressive collections dedicated to modern and contemporary masterpieces. The museum features over 150,000 paintings, not counting the other types of exhibits.

Through the virtual tour, you can select items to view based on categories such as Canvas Art, or instead choose to view the most popular works or works organized based on time period. This museum houses popular pieces such as Portrait of Joseph Roulin by Vincent van Gogh and Chateau Noir by Paul Cezanne.

The Louvre in Paris

The Louvre Museum is also making it easy for people around the world to appreciate the famous works of art housed here right through their computer or other devices. There are a number of tours to choose from, each focused around different ideas. The Advent of the Artist tour, for example, looks at the transition that occurred from artists being anonymous craftsmen during the classical period to the beginning of famous artists in the Renaissance era. Another tour will look at the connection between art and politics throughout history. Egyptian Antiquities and history tours related to the Louvre itself are also available.

The National Gallery of Art in Washington, DC

The National Gallery of Art offers three virtual tours as well as a wealth of other online, interactive material. The True to National Virtual Tour, Degas at the Opera Virtual Tour, and the Raphael and His Circle Virtual Tour all make it easy to see what this museum has to offer.

In addition to these specific tours, people can also explore collection highlights, guided meditation with certain works of art, family interactive activities, and teacher resources.

The Vatican Museum

The Vatican Museum has also opened up its collection to allow people a glimpse at its fantastic collection. You can step into its many exhibits to see some of the most famous works of art in history. You can get a 360-degree look at the Sistine Hall and Sistine Chapel, the Pio Clementino Museum, The Hall of Papyri, the Alexandrine Hall, and more. You can also take the 360-degree tours of some of the archeological areas, particularly the Necropolis of the Via Triumphalis.

In addition to the 360-degree tours that allow you to feel as though you are standing in the room yourself, you can also look at the collections themselves specifically and examine the masterpieces up close. Choose from the masterpieces found in collections such as the Gregorian Egyptian Museum, the Ethnological Museum, and the Collection of Contemporary Art.

The museums of the world offer a tremendous amount of culture and history for people to experience. To appreciate these masterpieces from the comfort of your home, the virtual tours offered by these museums present a welcome reprieve.

As you look forward to continuing to enrich your world, learn, and just have some fun while you are confined to your home, consider how one of these virtual tours may be just the perfect thing. Never before has it been so easy to visit museums in the United States, France, and Australia on the same day, so seize the opportunities that these unique circumstances offer all art lovers.