You can take kids on 1000s of virtual museum tours all over the world right now. Because museum doors might be temporarily closed for real, but their creativity’s wide open and every single one is working hard to liven up lockdown for families.
Plus, unlike actual museum visits, virtual tours can be as long or short as kids like; there are plenty of activities to give parent/teachers a bit of a breather, and virtually exploring the art world is a great way for grandparents to spend time with grandkids too. Here are 10 worldwide museums at home we’ve tried and tested and liked a lot:
One of the biggest museums in the US, the Art Institute of Chicago’s collection highlights include American Gothic by Grant Wood, Edward Hopper’s Nighthawks and Sunday on La Grand Jatte by Georges Seurat. Virtually visit any time with kids to try anything from activities and art projects to interactively exploring individual artworks.
Take a virtual museum tour of the Art Institute of Chicago with kids
The Getty Center and Getty Villa in Los Angeles attract millions of visitors each year so no surprise to find Getty’s one of the most exciting virtual visits right now too. Go with kids for specially curated exhibitions and videos, podcasts and access to downloadable art books from the museum library.
Take a virtual museum tour of the Getty with kids
The world’s largest museum, and most visited, the Louvre’s an old master at virtual tours and it’s where kids can see the Mona Lisa, Venus de Milo and Winged Victory of Samothrace – without a sea of adult heads in the way, for a change.
Take a virtual museum tour of Musée du Louvre with kids
The Rijksmuseum has always been big on getting kids involved in its collection and isn’t letting lockdown get in the way of that. Its virtual experiences are incredibly well designed, all available in English and there’s even a range of online art classes for older kids and adults.
Take a virtual museum tour of the Rijksmuseum with kids
Guggenheim At Large isn’t new but it’s even more dynamic at the moment to make up for the world’s most famous modern art museum being temporarily closed. Kids might not be able to stand in front of an actual Jackson Pollock (how many movies have used that scene?) but the virtual experiences get them pretty close.
Take a virtual museum tour of the Guggenheim Museum New York with kids
The Met’ is another New York art legend actively engaging with young virtual visitors at the moment. #metkids is colourful, interactive and completely absorbing for under 12s and older kids should definitely start their visit with Met Stories.
Take a virtual museum tour of the Metropolitan Museum of Art with kids
Almost no other museum in the world reaches out to kids like Tate Modern. Its online resources are always excellent, but they’ve gone into overdrive during the past year and become a go-to for everything from craft sessions to seriously good fun homework-help.
Take a virtual museum tour of Tate Modern with kids
Europe’s most visited natural history museum gives families 14 different ways to explore virtually just now. It might not be exactly like the real thing, but kids will never get this close to the mammoth skeleton of Hope, the Blue Whale, or have David Attenborough give them a personal tour of the legendary Hintze Hall.
Take a virtual museum tour of the Natural History Museum with kids
Scotland’s national museum might be closed at the moment but kids can still explore its wildly diverse collection online. There’s also interactive learning experiences covering everything from making rosettes for Clydesdale horses to Mexican paper art and drawing penguins.
Take a virtual museum tour of the National Museum of Scotland with kids
More than 2000 museums around the world are on the Google Arts and Culture platform and adding to their own virtual experiences with a range of 360° tours, street views and in-depth tools to let kids see some of earth’s greatest art up close and at home.
Take a virtual museum tour of Google Arts and Culture with kids
Ready to try more world travel from home? Take a look at our family holiday bucket list dreams. And if you try a virtual museum tour with kids, follow Family Traveller on Instagram and Facebook and tell us all about it - or just say 'hello'.