You Can Now Explore Buckingham Palace Through Virtual Reality
This piece originally appeared on Travel + Leisure.
Fix yourself a proper cup of tea, grab some biscuits, get comfy on the couch, and head to London’s Buckingham Palace via Google. The Queen’s residence has just become the first U.K. landmark to be included as part of Google Expeditions, the virtual reality experience that lets armchair explorers inside some of the world’s most intriguing spots.
Through the wonders of modern technology, Anglophiles can take a guided tour of the historic site, starting at the palace’s grand staircase with stops in a few state rooms, the throne room to see where the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge took their wedding photos, and the picture gallery installed by King George IV that houses the Royal Art Collection.
At the moment, the tour is only available through Google Cardboard, but there's a 360-degree YouTube video of the palace, meaning you can take a private tour of the Queen's art collection from your phone while watching the horses at Ascot or waiting in line at the grocery store.
The Buckingham Palace tour was made possible thanks to the U.K.'s Royal Collection Trust and according to the U.K’s Daily Mail, “it is understood” that the Queen herself is aware of the project and has given it her seal of approval.
Google Expeditions was designed as an immersive experience for students who could explore the world through virtual reality. The school program, called Google Expeditions Pioneer, lets teachers take their students on immersive tours of sights like Machu Picchu, as well as the Great Barrier Reef. More than 500,000 students have taken trips around the world through the Expeditions Pioneer Program since September, according to a Googleblog post, and not one of them sat next to you on an airplane.