Travel from home thanks to technology
Travel from home thanks to technology

If You Can't Travel, We'll Bring The World To You

Dear Brightwater guests, 

We know that these are uncertain and strange times, and we also understand that booking a holiday is one of life's pleasures. At the moment, many of us are hesitant to travel and restrictions are in place to help protect us. So, for now, it seems that staying put is the best solution. However, thanks to technology, there are ways to explore the world from the comfort of your own home, and we have rounded up some great resources that will bring experiences to you – couch culture, if you will!


Discover the Louvre's Egyptian collection from your sofa

If you'd rather be wandering Paris's marvellous museums, the Louvre has an interactive virtual tour of some of its collections! The first is a virtual tour of its Egyptian Antiquities, comprised of artefacts from the Pharaonic period. Then, you can explore the remains of the Louvre's moat or 'visit' the Galerie d'Apollon, which was destroyed by fire in 1661 and rebuilt by Le Vau. Once things return to normal, why not treat yourself to a place on our The Genius of Monet tour, which offers some free time in Paris that you could use to explore the Louvre in person?

Click here to begin your virtual tour of the Louvre now. 

Try your hand at painting like one of the greats

If you'd rather do something more hands-on during this period of social distancing, why not learn from the fabulous Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam? They have uploaded a series of video tutorials to YouTube that will teach you how to draw and paint like Rembrandt! So, if you're the proud owner of some paints or pencils, why not give it a whirl? Once you've mastered Rembrandt's style, you could move on to Vermeer or Van Gogh. Rijks Creative is a great YouTube channel, and one that can keep any creative entertained for hours! Want to visit Amsterdam for real? Search 'Amsterdam' on our site to see what's on offer.  

Click here to browse the lessons available now. 

Travel through time with the British Museum

Starting from 2,000,000 BC and moving all the way through time to the present day – and spanning all continents – why not spend a few hours learning more about the world's incredible history? With topics including Art & Design, Power & Identity and Religion & Belief, there are endless artefacts to view and things to discover. Each point on the easy-to-use interactive timeline opens a pop-up complete with images, text and even audio, making your journey through the ages an engaging one.

Click here to launch the interactive timeline now. 

Walk through one of Russia's most iconic museums - the Hermitage

To promote its brand new iPhone 11, the innovative folks over at Apple have produced a one-take "cinematic journey through one of the world’s biggest museums in St. Petersburg, Russia" – namely, the iconic Hermitage. This video lasts for over five hours and takes in 45 galleries, 588 masterpieces and even live performances – all shot in 4K on the iPhone 11 Pro. So, if you've always wanted to discover the Hermitage and have had to halt your travel plans for now, you can at least do so virtually. 

Watch the five-hour, one-take video by clicking play to your left. 

Be charmed by penguins wandering a closed-to-the-public aquarium

If you need a break from all the learning and news-reading, why not switch off and enjoy a very cute video? The penguins of Chicago's Shedd Aquarium recently got to explore their surroundings after it closed to the public. Writing on Twitter, the staff at Shedd explained: "While this may be a strange time for us, these days feel normal for animals at Shedd [...] This morning, Edward and Annie explored Shedd’s rotunda. They are a bonded pair of rockhopper penguins, which means they are together for nesting season. Springtime is nesting season for penguins at Shedd, and this year is no different!"

Watch them in action to the right. 

Get your arts fix with Google

From a virtual exploration of the ancient streets of Pompeii, to a street view 'walk' around the iconic Taj Mahal and a chance to read pages from Frida Kahlo's personal diary, Google's fantastic Arts & Culture project is a one-stop-shop for... well, arts and culture. Elsewhere, why not discover the gardens of the Palace of Versailles, tour the National Archaeological Museum in Naples or learn to cook traditional dishes from Nigeria – the choice is not only yours, but it's huge, too!

Click here to browse the extensive project today. 

Lose yourself in imaginary worlds with a film-themed classical concert

If you're a bit of a movie buff, why not take a seat in the audience of the BBC's John Williams Film Prom? Filmed to celebrate the 85th birthday of the legendary composer, you'll enjoy 119 minutes of recognisable music from films such as Star Wars, Harry Potter, ET and Indiana Jones. 

Click here to access iPlayer and watch the concert in full. 

Enjoy the cancelled Chelsea Flower Show - virtually

The Brightwater team were absolutely devastated to learn that the 2020 Chelsea Flower Show has been cancelled, but things have perked up today following an open letter written by Sue Biggs, RHS Director General, about the creation of an online Virtual RHS Chelsea Flower Show that will take place between 18-23 May! One reason for designing a virtual version is "how many feel they need gardening in their life now more than ever before for their mental and physical wellbeing during this national emergency. This applies to everyone from those who are having to self-isolate to families planning, maybe for the first time, to grow their own food." There are no confirmed details at the moment, but check the link below for more. 

Read the official letter from the RHS in full here. 

Dust off your green fingers and help wildlife

Now that the weather is starting to feel better and spring is preparing to rear its head, why not head out into the garden? Not only does being outside help us to improve our mental health, by preparing our gardens for the year ahead we will also help any wildlife to thrive. The National Wildlife Federation has published a great blog on jobs to do outside that will benefit butterflies, bees and birds. 

Click here to read the full post, complete with great advice. 

And finally... start planning those 2021 holidays!

You might be interested to know that we are just finishing off our 2021 preview brochure, which will be with you shortly! So, if not being able to travel at the moment is getting you down, look forward to browsing our new pages as we're bound to have a holiday to inspire you. From adventures of a lifetime in far-flung destinations, to scenic Scottish tours and amazing European gardens, the world is waiting. All you have to do now is hang in there until it arrives... watch this space!

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If You Can't Travel, We'll Bring The World To You was published on 19 March 2020