How to Travel the World when you can’t Travel

by | May 15, 2020 | Live - Accommodation, Live Work Play Travel, Over 30 Travel, Trip Planning | 26 comments

For the foreseeable future our world has shut up shop where travel is concerned. And it may be quite some time before we are able to start travelling again. But don’t put your wanderlust on hold. The world is still at our fingertips and there are a number of ways to keep the travelling spirit alive from the comfort of your home. There are great travel books to read, interesting TV shows and movies to watch, on-line meet ups to join or an on-line class to join or maybe take a virtual tour of a museum. Basically, you can still see the world from home. Here is my list of ways you can travel the world when you can’t travel.

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Read Books



Read a good travel book


Reading in general is a great way to while away your time. Now reading travel books that take you on an adventure will help you kill a number of birds with the one stone. You can transport yourself to far-flung destinations while spending your time at home. Reading is one of the best budget-friendly travel options to help you travel the world when you can’t travel.

Some of my great read recommendations include:

A Year in Provence, Peter Mayle
Under the Tuscan Sun, Francis Mayes
Falling towards England, Clive James
A Walk in the Woods or Down Under, Bill Bryson
Ten Years a Nomad, Matthew Kepnes
And one of my favourites, the first travel guide I wrote, Live Work and Play in London and the UK, Sharyn McCullum

If you need a kindle or other reading device click here. And when this pandemic is over this item could come in handy while you travel.


Movies and TV shows


Watch travel-related TV shows and movies


There are many truly amazing movies and TV shows that can take you around the world. Even if they don’t take you around the world they can take you to other places. Some of my favourites:

National Lampoon’s European Vacation
Under the Tuscan Sun, if you can’t read the book, watch the movie.
Eat Pray Love
Planes, Trains and Automobiles
Lost in Translation
Born Free
Gorillas in the Mist
The Secret Life of Walter Mitty
Priscilla, Queen of the Desert
Thelma and Louise
Lord of the Rings
The Amazing Race


Virtual Tours



Welcome to The Louvre


If you can’t get to a museum, no need to worry, as many museums are now able to come to you. Why not take a virtual tour. Though it isn’t the same as actually being there, it is still a great way to pass the time of day. And you never know what you will see and learn. Here are some I’ve been too lately. I would love to add to my list so if you have been on a virtual tour lately please drop a link in the comments below. You will be helping someone travel the world when you can’t travel.

Anne Frank Museum, Amsterdam
Van Gogh Museum, Amsterdam
Picasso Museum, Barcelona
The Giants Causeway, Ireland
British Museum, London
Buckingham Palace, London
National Gallery, London
Metropolitan Museum, New York
Coliseum, Rome
Catacombs, Paris
The Louvre, Paris
Machu Picchu, Peru
Ruins of Pompeii, Pompeii
Hermitage Museum, St. Petersburg
National Gallery Victoria (NGV), Melbourne





Put your earphones on and be taken away


Put on your headphones, close your eyes and sit back and relax while being transported somewhere else while listening to a travel podcast. I’m just starting to get into these so don’t have any favourites right now to refer you to. But I will update this post with some soon. In the meantime, if you need a pair of good headphones click here to discover what is available.


On-line Classes



So much to learn


Though you won’t actually be travelling with an on-line class you can get yourself ready for your travels. What I mean is, you could do a TEFL Course so you could teach English in another country. Maybe hone your photography skills to learn to take better photos. Possibly do a travel writing course so you can write about your travels and make money from them. Or learn a language yourself so you can immerse yourself in another culture. The possibilities are endless. 

I-to-i for a TEFL Certificate so you can teach English. Check out the courses I-to-i offer here.
Travel Writing is one way you can make money while travelling (or not), check out my Travel Writing Course here.
Udemy is a great website offering many on-line courses including travel photography, graphic design and blogging, to name a few. Check them out here.



Lean on learning. Online courses as low as $10.99

There you go, my suggestions on how you can travel the world when you can’t travel. So until we can travel again, travel the world with my suggestions and see where there might take you. I hope to see you on the road real soon!


Thanks for sharing!

Useful Travel Resources for Your Next Adventure!


Accommodation: Where Will You Sleep Tonight? If you want a bed in a hostel dorm find a great deal with HostelWorld. I mostly stay in hotels now, is my favourite site for booking hotels from budget to ‘I feel like splurging’. For something completely different I house and pet sitting through Trusted Housesitters – this has saved me thousands on accommodation, no joke!

Flights: I always head to Skyscanner first to find a cheap and flexible flight.

Car Rental: When I need to rent a car I turn to RentalCars.

Train Travel: I love riding the train rails and get the best value from raileurope. And Japan has a great one too – JapanRail Pass.

Bus Travel: Check out Busbud for bus tickets.

Pre-organised Tours: I’ve been on a few in my time with Contiki being my first and favourite. if you are 18-35 years of age you should check them out.

Jump-the-queue entrance tickets: I don’t enjoy standing in long queues which is why I book my entrance tickets and day trips in advance. My favourite website to book them in advance is GetYourGuide.

Travel Insurance. There are a number of reasons why travel insurance is important and I never travel without having bought a policy as you never know when something might happen. SafetyWing is great digital nomads and long-term travellers and World Normads has policies for general and adventure travel.


Sharyn McCullum In A Black T-shirt With Her Live Work Play Travel Logo In The Shape Of A World.

Hi. Sharyn here. Savvy Australian female with a passion for travel and working abroad. I’m on a mission to provide you with my best tips, tricks and hacks to work abroad and travel the world. If I can do it, so can you!  Read more.


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Hi, Sharyn here. I’m the face behind Live Work Play Travel. I’ve travelled all my life thanks to my dad who worked for an airline – thanks dad! I’ve been a travel writer/blogger and living a location independent lifestyle since 1993. My aim with Live Work Play Travel is to provide you with the info to start living, working and travelling around the world like I do. I currently live in Melbourne with my partner and 2 kids. 


    • Sharyn McCullum

      Yes the digital world is proving handy!

  1. Yara

    Great list! I just signed up for an online class yesterday – figured I had no excuses to not get it done. I’ll be doing some virtual tours this weekend as well, excited for how travel will be changing in the coming months.

    • Sharyn McCullum

      Good on you. I hope your course takes you where you want to go! What course is it?

  2. Brooklyn

    I love reading posts like these and seeing how others are “traveling” right now! I’ve been reading tons!

    • Sharyn McCullum

      Yes, this is how I have been travelling right now. But am looking forward to some road trips real soon. How about you? Where will you go when you can?

  3. madhu sharma

    Those are some great ideas .these days I keep watching travel shoes

    • Sharyn McCullum

      Thanks. It is just what I have been doing as well as writing content for my blogs. Keep watching travel shows!

  4. Katie

    Great ideas! I am loving listening to podcasts and trying the virtual tours at the moment – they are a great way to see new things without being able to travel! I teach abroad and would definitely recommend a TEFL course to prepare for some long-term travel – companies all over the world are desperate for English teachers, especially when all of this is over.

    • Sharyn McCullum

      Yes, there are many ways we can continue to travel without leaving home. Thank goodness for innovative people who have created the virtual tours – I am loving them too.

  5. Luisa

    I’ve been looking for some lists like this and completely agree about under the Tuscan sun. The book and the movie.

    • Sharyn McCullum

      Under the Tuscan Sun and A Year in Provence are two of my favourites.

  6. Chelsea

    All of these have got me through isolation! I love reading and writing! I also have been exercising and baking!

    • Sharyn McCullum

      Glad reading, writing, exercising and baking are getting you through isolation.

  7. Erin

    Love these ideas! I have been all about the travel podcasts lately to keep me feeling inspired for future travel. Thanks for sharing.

    • Sharyn McCullum

      Glad you like the ideas. What travel podcasts can you recommend?

  8. Katherine

    Ugh, I signed up for a bunch of online classes and haven’t done any of them 🙁
    This might be the kick I needed to realise that I’m wasting time!

    • Sharyn McCullum

      Just persevere. If you really want to learn new things you will. You aren’t wasting your time!

  9. Sophie

    I absolutely love these ideas, particularly the book suggestions. There’s plenty I haven’t read that I’m adding to my list. That’s awesome that you wrote your own one too!

    • Sharyn McCullum

      Reading travel books is a great way to immerse yourself in somebody else’s travel experience. So keep on reading!

  10. Ashley

    These are great ideas. I like everyone is starting to feel the itch to travel again. These ideas are perfect!

    • Sharyn McCullum

      Until we can all travel again, and feel comfortable travelling, these are just some ways to help scratch that travel itch.

  11. Suvarna Arora

    Great post. Cheers to technology that we can travel virtually.

    • Sharyn McCullum

      Agree. Technology is great to travel virtually.

  12. Chirasree

    Wow! This is really one useful list. Thanks for sharing.

    • Sharyn McCullum

      Glad you think so. I am sure there are many more virtual tours you can take.


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