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Google now gives you a virtual tour of the Taj Mahal

International travel seems like a far-fetched idea at the moment with the coronavirus pandemic wreaking havoc, especially in India. However, Google seems to have an idea to make people globetrot virtually. On the occasion of World Heritage Day, UNESCO, Google Arts & Culture has created a new online resource called Explore UNESCO World Heritage.
“This is a unique opportunity to enjoy a virtual globetrotting tour of cultural landmarks and outstanding places of natural beauty, as well as to access accurate and reliable information on sites of outstanding universal value,” said Ernesto Ottone, UNESCO Assistant Director-General for Culture, in a blog post.
On a microsite created by Google for 10 UNESCO heritage sites, users can get a virtual tour. These sites include the Taj Mahal, Yosemite National Park, Serengeti National Park, The Colosseum and others.
Once you land on the site, you can see a virtual tour of the Taj Mahal and see the grandeur of it. It’s a nice tool for people to learn about the history of the place as well as its cultural heritage. You can get the virtual tour here
“Of course, this virtual exploration will never replace the unique experience of seeing these places for real and visiting World Heritage sites. We shall travel again. In the meantime, we hope it will nevertheless enable users to immerse themselves in the beauty of our world, and inspire action to protect it,” said Ottone in the blog post.
Cultural tourism, which accounts for 40% of the entire tourism market, is hurting, with the number of international tourists dropping by 75% in 2020 compared to 2019. Following the closure of concert halls, theatres, bookstores and cinemas, the royalties collected by creators may have dropped by as much as 35% in 2020 — a €3.5 billion loss globally, explained Ottone.

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