This last year has completely changed how we interact with the world. With travel restrictions in place, social distancing measures still enforced, and many of us working remotely, we spend more time at home than ever before. Technology has made the transition manageable, but I am starved for social interaction and stimulation. However, thanks to this latest cold snap, it became dangerous to go outside. But we are social creatures, so we still need entertainment. If you are getting tired of surfing the net or watching reruns, here are some free entertainment options for you when you are stuck indoors.
Free Entertainment Options from Home
Reading Resources through Virtual Libraries
Reading has been one of my ever since I was a child. Books allow me to escape the mundane routine of daily life and experience new adventures from the comfort of my own bed. But, any bibliophile will tell you it is not cheap to keep up with the latest titles. Even if you find online deals, your shopping cart can easily exceed your budget. The good news is that libraries still exist and offer a wide variety of reading resources. Unfortunately, it is not always convenient to get there, especially if your city is experiencing extreme weather. Furthermore, they may not have the book you want on hand, meaning you will have to request it from another branch and wait for it to arrive.
However, our fellow book lovers have created vast online resources to bring you unlimited selections. This dedicated blog is a place for bookworms to feed their addiction without breaking the bank. With 20 of the most convenient sites, you can safely and legally download books absolutely free! Since they add new titles every day, you have an endless source of reading material. If you are having difficulty choosing what to read next, the blog even offers a short quiz that will suggest new titles based on your current interests.
For those out there who never seem to have time to sit down and read, don’t fret. There are free entertainment options for you as well. There are dozens of mobile apps where you can access free audiobooks. You can still work down your reading list as you tackle other household tasks. The best part about free audiobooks is that they can bring your family together. Choose something that appeals to everyone, and make it a weekly activity you can all look forward to.
Virtual Tours of Museums and Galleries
One of the most fulfilling aspects of traveling has been immersing myself in other cultures. Unfortunately, it doesn’t seem like international travel restrictions will be changing any time soon. Even if you live in a large metropolis with top notch museums and galleries, many have restricted access and opening hours to suppress large crowds.
Luckily, the museum sector has adapted to find new ways for people to experience the arts. Many of the world’s most famous institutions now offer virtual tours and live events even while their doors remain open. Google Arts & Culture has partnered with more than 2,500 galleries and museums around the world so you can peruse the finest collections right from your couch. Whether you are interested in viewing the work of the European masters, the Egyptian collection housed in the British Museum, or the contemporary collection at the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA), they are only a few clicks away. These free virtual tours and viewings are a unique way for you to experience the fine arts.
There are also free entertainment options for those more inclined toward scientific pursuits. If you have your eyes on the skies, NASA has some fantastic resources if you want to explore astronomy and the celestial phenomena of deep space. With NASA at home, you are free to explore the solar system, tour their labs and facilities, and even access operations control centers. All you need is a mobile device to begin uncovering the mysteries of the universe.
In addition to their library of satellite images, archived audio recordings, and videos of data collected from their satellites, the NASA Research Center hosts featured tours and events online. You can survey alien terrain, watch engineers test rocket engines, or follow along as astronauts conduct experiments on the space station. Their content is appropriate for scientists of all ages and is an excellent way to promote STEM education for children. Even if you are stuck indoors, you can still find virtual experiences that will take you out of this world.
Visit National Parks and Zoos
Those of us who love the outdoors are especially affected by the extreme weather keeping us confined to our homes. However, thanks to technology, you don’t need to go outside to enjoy nature. You can still traverse the majestic peaks, pristine forests, craggy canyons, and breathtaking beauty of America’s national parks with virtual tours. The National Park Foundation grants you access to the country’s most famous parks and heritage sites. You can learn the history and the importance of preserving our country’s natural resources for generations to come.
Animal lovers can also get there fill of wildlife without combating the elements or long lines. With their live streams, you can peacefully observe the animals in San Diego’s open-air habitats. Not only do you skip the crowds, but you also can view the exhibits at your own pace.
One of the most difficult aspects of this past year for me has been the inability to attend live music events. I love going to concerts and catching local acts on the weekend. Even though I can’t attend in person, many big names are hosting free events for their fans online. Even if the artists aren’t on your usual playlists, these virtual concerts are a great way to discover new music.
Another way to find new music is through the dozens of free music apps out there. Whether you tune in to a new station or check out new YouTube channels, you have an endless amount of platforms to explore. If you have enough free time on your hands, you can even attempt to learn how to play on your own. Plenty of accomplished musicians post free tutorials geared toward beginners. No matter what your musical tastes or interests, you can be sure there are free entertainment options online for you.
Free Entertainment Options to Fit Your Budget
Although we have had fewer entertainment outlets the last year, we can still access many of our favorite pastimes. Thanks to modern technology and the Internet, we are able to enjoy the things we love. The best news for our wallets is that most of these online events and tours don’t cost a dime. So next time you are looking for something to do, try something new and check out some of the free links.
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