Editor’s Note: This page will continue to be updated as more virtual tours are announced. If you represent a destination marketing organization or cultural institution and would like to be added, feel free to reach out to us: firstname.lastname@example.org
Updated: April 18, 2020
As always, real travel is infinitely preferable to virtual travel. However, we all need to do our part to #flattenthecurve and #stayhome to stop the spread of the coronavirus during this COVID-19 outbreak. Lucky for us, the programmers at Google Arts and Culture have developed tools to take you around the world without leaving the comfort of your home.
The tech giant features some of the most prestigious institutions in the country, sharing treasures from New York City’s Metropolitan Museum of Art and Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum and LA’s J. Paul Getty Museum and Miami’s Patricia & Phillip Frost Art Museum to name just a few.
Fans of RuPaul’s Drag Race can even get in on the digital action with a new week-long web-based series starting on Friday, March 27.
So, in order to make your self-isolation as gay as you are (and let’s be honest, that’s pretty darn gay), we curated a list of top queer experiences:
New York City
It’s all about education and equality at New York City’s highly respected Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual & Transgender Community Center. Known for its strong LGBT programs, the center celebrates diversity and advocates for justice and opportunity.
Stonewall National Monument
New York City
In June 1969, at the Stonewall Inn, patrons and employees fought back as New York City police conducted a raid on the bar. The six-day-long uprising marked a significant turning point in the struggle for LGBTQ rights. Within two years, queer people across the country had formed gay rights groups in almost every major city which helped shape the modern LGBTQ civil rights movement.
On June 24, 2016, Stonewall National Monument was dedicated as the first LGBTQ national monument, memorializing the birthplace of the modern lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer civil rights movement.
Living Monument to the Stonewall Riots
In conjunction with the The Center and the National Park Service, Google created “Stonewall Forever,” which features animated slides that take viewers through five decades of the LGBTQ rights movement.
The monument is a digital archive of material accessible through desktops, mobile devices and an augmented reality app. Users find themselves in Christopher Street Park, across the street from the Stonewall Inn. As audio of the famous gay liberation chant “we’re here, we’re queer, get used to it!” plays in the background, an explosion of rainbow crystals is visible in the park. Each crystal shows footage relating to LGBTQ history and activism.
Digital Drag Fest
This past weekend, Producer Entertainment Group (PEG) announced they are bringing some of drag’s biggest names to the web for a digital drag festival.
Starting March 27, the new series will be hosted on Stageit and feature a roster of the biggest stars from RuPaul’s Drag Race. Each queen will hold 30-minute performances ranging from lip-syncing and stand-up comedy to cooking demos and dancing. Viewers will even have the opportunity to tip their favorite performers.
Confirmed queens include: Alaska Thunderf*ck, Alexis Michelle, BenDeLaCreme, Divina De Campo, Ginger Minj, Jackie Beat, Jiggly Caliente, Jinkx Monsoon, Jujubee, Manila Luzon, Miz Cracker, Monét X Change, Mrs. Kasha Davis, Nina West, Peppermint, Sharon Needles, Sherry Vine, Tammie Brown and Trinity The Tuck Taylor.
Museum of Youth Culture
The GLBT Historical Society Museum, located in the heart of San Francisco’s Castro District, is the first stand-alone museum of gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender history and culture in the United States. At 1,600 square feet, the museum, while small, packs a big punch with dynamic and surprising exhibitions and programming.
Dry Tortugas National Park
Before there were tons of places for queers to feel free to be themselves, there was Key West. For some time, it was the only U.S. city to court gay tourist. And what’s not to love? Beautiful scenery, excellent weather, and a devil-may-care lifestyle that’s one drink away from hedonism.
Take a virtual trip to Dry Tortugas National Park and swim through the third largest coral reef in the world to relive one of your memories of visiting paradise at the edge of the country. And thanks to Google, you don’t have to book a seaplane or boat to get there but you will need to pour your own drink.
Enjoy Virtual Gay Pride Marches
Thanks to 360° cameras and Google Street View, you can virtually attend gay pride parades from around the world on #PrideForEveryone. Even in self-isolation, you should dress for the occasion — it is Pride after all! So, be sure to sport whatever rainbow attire you have. Think: T-shirt, tank, nipple tape, wig, Speedo, or enough glitter to make Ke$ha blush.
You can also learn more about gay pride through Google’s Stonewall riots digital photos and oral history page.
Palm Springs’ White Party will become a digital concert that will take place over two days on April 25 and 26 with a lineup of six DJs. Three DJs will perform on the event’s Facebook page each night with one-hour long sets.
On Saturday, April 25, performances will start at 9 p.m. with DJ Isis Muretech from Mexico, DJ GSP from Greece and DJ Phil Romano from Italy. On Sunday, April 26 the livestream starts at 4 p.m. with DJ Anne Louise from Brazil, DJ Ben Bakson from Germany and DJ Dan Slater from Australia. All six of these artists have performed at previous White Parties over the years.
Send White Party organizers your #StayHome pics, with you country/city, and they’ll publish them during the live performances.
Additionally, we suggest you use this time to plan your next vacation. Be inspired here.
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