Wednesday, July 08, 2020

Virtual Tours of the World's Museums

In my continuing quest to virtually visit every museum in the world during lock-down I am today touring the Uffizi Gallery in Florence and the Colonial Williamsburg living-history museum in Virginia.

Florence's Uffizi Gallery dates back to the 16th Century and has one of the greatest collections of Italian Renaissance art in the world. In 2019 the Uffizi reopened ten restored galleries housing its collection of Venetian paintings of the 1500's. You can explore these galleries yourself online on the Uffizi Galleries Virtual Tour.

On this virtual tour you can explore 360° degree panoramic imagery of the Uffizi's Hall of the Dynasties and the Galleries of Sixteenth-Century Venetian Painting. Using the interactive white circles you can move around just as you would using the arrows in Google Maps Street View. As you virtually explore the galleries you can discover more about each of the paintings by clicking on the small green circles to read the painting's wall notes.

The Colonial Williamsburg museum in Virginia includes several hundred restored or re-created buildings from the 18th Century. The museum provides a unique glimpse into life in 18th Century America.

The Colonial Williamsburg Foundation has created three virtual 360° degree panoramic tours. These tours allow you to explore the Governor's Palace, the Capitol Building, and the Art Museums. Each of the panoramic tours starts with an introductory video. The Governor's Palace video in particular is very impressive as it takes you into the palace while accompanied by a number of actors in 18th Century dress.

Each of the three virtual tours allow you to explore using a number of connected 360° degree images. These images include interactive hot-spots which allow you to learn more about the individual rooms and the artifacts found within them.

If you want to explore more of the world's best museums and galleries during lock-down then here are a few more virtual tours that you might enjoy:

The Metropolitan Museum of Art - includes a number of virtual exhibitions
The National Gallery - London's National Gallery has a number of virtual tours
The Rijksmuseum Masterpieces Up Close - a virtual tour of the museum's Gallery of Honour
The Sistine Chapel Virtual Tour - explore the Sistine Chapel and Michelangelo's astonishing ceiling
The Smithsonian National Museum of Natural Museum - has created a number of virtual tours
The Stonehenge Virtual Tour - places you in the center of this mysterious pre-historic monument
Beijing Palace Museum - the Palace Museum has created a number of virtual tours which allow you to explore some of the museum's galleries and also some of the amazing buildings of the Forbidden City
Buckingham Palace - take a virtual tour around the Queen's favorite pad

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