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Virtual things to do in Toronto during COVID-19 pandemic


If you are going stir crazy during self-isolation and you have had your fill of watching friends do online workouts, and celebs and popstars talking and performing on social media, here are a few fresh distractions to keep you entertained during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Of course there are hundreds of other virtual experiences you can find online, including touring museums like the Louvre and the Smithsonian as well as touring open houses by individual realtors and watching Season 3 of Ozark just released on Netflix yesterday, but here a few Toronto options to get you on your way.

1 Visit the Zoo

The zoo is now bringing the animals to us because we can’t visit in person due to the COVID-19 threat. And what better way to cheer people up who are stuck confined at home than to watch streams of cute animal silliness as they go about their day? They call it ‘Bringing Your Zoo to You’ and not only do you see and learn about the adorable animals up close, but it is also a FREE virtual visit. They live stream from their facebook page. Some archived streams include a peak into the world of their gorilla exhibit with an informative gorilla ‘keeper talk’. Each visit and archived video is 15 – to 20 minutes long, but they also have shorter video clips of a variety of exhibits posted as well. So far they have also featured the polar bears, Arctic Foxes, turtles, Shintay the bear playing with a cardboard box, zebras, giraffes, the African penguins feeding and many more. Explore the sites and sounds of the zoo by visiting their facebook page.


2 Watch the sharks at Ripley’s Aquarium

From the comforts of your own self-isolation pad you can explore Ripley’s Aquariums at Home and learn all about the amazing creatures of our underwater world! You can see videos from a number of their different aquariums around the world and also visit the shark tank in Toronto. Meet the Aquarium staff educators, who will be your guide to live feedings, educational encounters, story time, and much more! You can also scroll a bit more and discover downloadable animal activities and crafts!


3 Find a furry friend at the Toronto Humane Society

The Toronto Humane Society is offering digital adoptions online, a clever way to find forever homes for pets during the COVID-19 crisis. Visit their website to check out all of the pets available and if you find one you are interested in contact their adoption department. Adoptions are first come, first served. You will have an interview with them and then book a meet and greet at the shelter. More than 40 animals have already found homes thanks to the digital adoption process. Pets can be a most welcome distraction when self-isolating, but keep in mind this is a long-term commitment. They need you as much as you need them.

4 Explore the McMichael Canadian Art eMuseum

The McMichael Collection eMuseum is an electronic resource cataloguing the McMichael’s incredible world renowned permanent collection of over 6,500 pieces of Canadian art, including paintings by the Group of Seven and their contemporaries, as well as First Nations, Métis and Inuit artists. The McMichael is also the gallery of record for works on paper from the Inuit community of Cape Dorset (Kinngait). The Cape Dorset archive contains more than 100,000 artworks. You can also check out Sarah Harmer here, performing her new songs live from the museum.

5 Ride the roller coasters at Canada’s Wonderland

Expereince point of view rides of the Fly and the world’s tallest, fastest, and longest dive coaster, Yukon Striker! Have you ridden this beast in person yet? You can also experience their iconic breathtaking Leviathan and Behemoth among other exciting Wonderland rides. The Fly takes four thrill seekers over an exhilarating 50-foot (15m) drop, through hairpin twists and turns and wild, breathtaking bumps. Check it out on their youtube channel through their website.

Ride the coasters and other rides at Canada’s Wonderland!

by Terry Lankstead


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