Want to travel but haven't got the funds or the time? No problem! You can explore the world from the comfort of your own home with armchair travel. Here's how.
What is an armchair traveler?
Armchair travel is the act of exploring a place, learning about a culture, or going on an adventure without leaving your home. It's the perfect way to learn about new cultures and destinations, and it can be a great way to escape your everyday life for a little while.
Being and armchair traveler doesn't mean you're lazy, it just means you're resourceful! There are endless ways to armchair travel, and with a little creativity, you can go anywhere in the world without even stepping out your front door.
Related: Why people like to travel
How to armchair travel
There are many ways to armchair travel, but some of the most popular methods include:
Well, I suppose I would say this, wouldn't I?! But travel blogs are a fantastic resource for armchair travelers.
Whether you're planning a road trip, searching for information on a dream destination, or just looking for some inspiration, travel blogs are a great way to explore the world from your armchair. You can even interact with other travelers and get first-hand insights and recommendations.
Here at Dave's Travel Pages for example, you will find blog posts relating to bicycle touring as well as how to plan a vacation in Greece. My site is the perfect inspiration for armchair travel lovers!
Vlogs are also a good way to find out information about different places around the world, and to see things you normally wouldn't. Watching YouTube videos, like this one from Kleftiko Bay in Milos, Greece sure does make you want to visit there!
Social media is a powerful tool that can be used for much more than just staying in touch with friends and family. With a little bit of exploration, you can use social media to armchair travel.
Start by following some travel bloggers, pages, and hashtags on your favorite platform. This will help you find interesting content and accounts to follow.
Other people's travel experiences can be a great source of inspiration and information for your own armchair travels. Following along on someone else's journey can be a great way to see the world without even leaving your home.
You can also use social media to connect with people from all over the world. Joining online communities and groups is a great way to learn about new cultures and make friends from different parts of the globe. Who knows, you might even find some armchair travel buddies!
One of the best ways to armchair travel is to take advantage of the wealth of information and experiences that are available online. There are now virtual tours for some of the most popular tourist destinations in the world, and they're a great way to explore a place without even leaving your living room.
You can find virtual tours for museums, historical sites, natural wonders, and more. Many of these tours are interactive, which means you can explore at your own pace and choose what you want to see.
While virtual travel experiences can never replace the real thing, they're a great way to get a taste of a new place. Some even allow you to see ancient sites as they were meant to be seen – without the crowds!
Some virtual tours you could look for include:
- Taj Mahal
- Sistine Chapel
- Machi Picchu in Peru
- Western Australia
- National Parks
- The Great Wall of China
Books are the most popular way both plan a future trip and to armchair travel. When you read about a destination, you can almost feel like you're there.
If you want to learn more about a specific place, try reading books set in that location or by authors from that culture. A guide travel book like Lonely Planet or Rick Steves can also be a great resource. Did you know I have a guidebook about Milos now available on Amazon?
For armchair travel, fiction books can be just as good as non-fiction. If you want to explore a new culture, try reading a book set in that country. You can even read books in translation to get a taste of another language and culture.
They can transport you to new places, teach you about other cultures, and give you a different perspective on the world. If you're not sure where to start, try reading some travel memoirs, novels set in different countries, or even cookbooks from around the world.
You can also read books about how to stay safe when you eventually do travel such as this one: Looking for Lemons.
If you're looking for travel inspiration, nothing quite beats a good travel movie. There are now travel channels and entire networks dedicated to travel content, so you're sure to find something to suit your interests.
Whether you want to watch documentaries about far-flung places, learn how to cook local dishes, or just see some beautiful scenery, there's a travel movie out there for you.
Don't know where to start? I've got a complete guide here to the best movies to inspire wanderlust.
Travel Songs and Playlists
Let's not forget the power of music! Songs can transport you to different places and times, and they can be the perfect way to set the mood for armchair travel.
If you want to explore a specific destination, try finding songs about that place or by artists from that culture. You can also find travel-themed playlist on Spotify and other music streaming platforms.
Here's some great songs to add to a travel playlist you can have in the background as you travel from the comfort of your armchair!
For people who want to explore the world from the comfort of their own home, Google Earth is a must. This free program allows you to see satellite images of almost anywhere in the world.
You can explore cities, landmarks, natural wonders, and more. You can even take a virtual tour of some of the most popular tourist destinations. Google Earth is a great way to get a bird's-eye view of the world and to armchair travel to far-flung places.
If you want to explore the world without leaving your home, National Geographic is a great place to start. This website has a wealth of information about different cultures and destinations, as well as beautiful photos and videos.
You can learn about different cultures, find travel tips, and even plan your next trip. National Geographic is a great resource for armchair travelers and anyone who loves to explore the world.
Put a big map on the wall
No armchair traveller should be without a map! Not only will it help you plan future trips, but it's also a great way to track the places you've been virtually.
Talk to family and friends
What better way to learn about the world than to talk to family and friends who have traveled?
They can tell you about their experiences, recommend places to visit, and even provide some insider tips. If you don't have any friends or family who have traveled, try joining an online forum or social media group dedicated to travel.
Tips On Virtual Experiences and Travel Inspiration
Here's a few quick tips to get the most out of armchair travel:
- Find a comfortable spot to relax in and make yourself comfortable.
- Put on some music or background noise that sets the mood and helps you relax.
- Make sure you have everything you need within reach, including snacks and drinks!
- Have a map handy so you can follow along with the places you're reading about or watching.
How to find new and interesting places to explore online
- Do a search on Google or another search engine.
- Check out websites like National Geographic and Lonely Planet.
- Browse travel-related social media groups and forums.
- Watch travel movies and shows for inspiration.
- Ask family and friends about their experiences.
The best free armchair travel websites and apps
Some useful websites and apps include:
- Google Earth
- National Geographic
- Lonely Planet
- Travel Movies and Shows
The benefits of armchair travelling
The great thing about armchair travel is that it's easy and affordable. You don't need to spend money on airfare or hotels, and you can explore the world from the comfort of your own home.
Armchair travel is also a great way to learn about different cultures and destinations. You can watch documentaries, read books, or even talk to family and friends who have traveled.
And, of course, armchair travel is the perfect way scratch that travel itch and to explore the world if you're unable to travel due to health reasons, financial challenges, or other constraints.
So what are you waiting for? Start planning your next online experiences and begin an armchair adventure today!
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Armchair traveler final thoughts
An armchair traveler is an individual who explores the world from the comfort of their own home. Equipped with nothing more than a curious mind and an insatiable thirst for knowledge, armchair travelers embark on virtual journeys through the pages of books, magazines, documentaries, or the vast expanse of the internet. These intrepid adventurers live vicariously through the experiences of others, allowing them to traverse distant lands and cultures without ever leaving their living room. So, if you're someone who dreams of faraway places but can't pack a suitcase just yet, join the ranks of armchair travelers and let your imagination take flight!