Feeling a bit of cabin fever this winter? You’re not alone. Thankfully, the internet has you covered. There’s a wealth of amazing experiences at your fingertips, and all you need is a good internet connection to enjoy them. Go on a tour of one of our country’s national parks, visit the best cultural and art museums, enjoy live events, or, as we’ll show you here, explore the world’s incredible wildlife housed in zoos and aquariums — all from the safety of your own sofa.

Virtual zoo tours offer enriching experiences for the whole family

 

Where to find virtual zoo experiences

As people have increasingly moved their lives online, many zoos, aquariums and wildlife parks around the country have responded by enhancing their virtual offerings, allowing you to simply visit a website and view animals in their habitats. Many centers and organizations host their live animal cams and virtual experiences on their own websites, and you can also find many good pre-recorded wildlife videos on YouTube. Below are some of the most popular choices if you are ready to get in touch with your wild side.

Live webcams

Keep up with your favorite wildlife with livestream webcams. Get a behind-the-scenes look at animals’ daily habits.

  • Check out the panda-cam at the Atlanta Zoo.
  • Enjoy the popular elephant and baby chimp virtual encounters at the Maryland Zoo.
  • Check out the virtual “Zoo to You” from Denver Zoo.
  • Browse multiple koala-cams at Koala.net.
  • Take virtual zoo tours at the Bronx Zoo, or splurge on an unforgettable 15-minute Virtual Wild Encounter that gives you an up-close view of an animal with its zookeeper over Zoom (must purchase tickets to attend).

With some virtual zoo tours, you can meet a zookeeper up close over video

 

Especially for kids

If you have school-age children at home, consider checking out one of these awesome resources designed for young ones to learn about ecosystems and have fun at the same time.

  • Explore the Houston Zoo and check out six different animal webcams, including elephants, giraffes, gorillas, flamingos and more.
  • Learn about all the animals, including fact sheets, videos, games, and go on a virtual field trip to the San Diego Zoo.
  • Go on a virtual safari in the African wilderness with Wild Earth Kids.

Virtual aquarium tours

If you prefer an under-the-sea experience, you can visit some of the country’s top aquariums — no towel or wetsuit required.

  • At the Monterey Bay Aquarium view ten amazing live-cams that feature single species, such as penguins, sharks, and sea otters. Or hang out for a while in a different habitat, like the sea kelp forest and coral reef. Also check out the full-color descriptions of 10 different habitat exhibits, and while you’re here, choose from a jaw-dropping gallery of wallpaper images to download for your desktop!
  • Go on a floor-by-floor tour of the Baltimore Aquarium.

A woman watches a penguin webcam over the internet

 

The benefits of virtual tours

You may discover that virtual experiences are not just a substitute for the real world, but actually provide enrichment with in-depth and behind-the-scenes views that you can’t get by walking through a public space. Virtual visits can also provide benefits for visitors who normally have difficulties navigating popular attractions, making these top spots more accessible to everyone.

Explore more virtual experiences:

With CenturyLink internet, you can stay connected to the big world out there.

Jennifer Fossenbell enjoys the internet and enjoys writing about many things, including the internet. She lives in the Denver area with her children and spouse, who also enjoy the internet. She also enjoys traveling and eating around the world, making poetry and art, and standing in the forest. More at jenniferfossenbell.com.