Let’s just admit it: If you’re reading this, you love to travel. You love the idea of visiting and experiencing new and unique places. Becoming one with a new society and absorbing all that traveling offers into your life and your memories. But for many of us, the physical act of moving from one destination to another isn’t as easy as it once was, and frankly, no one is certain what it will be like in the future. That said, thanks to a new virtual travel start-up, you have more options than you might know.
Beeyonder was created to provide memorable travel experiences for people who live with conditions that don’t allow them to, or limit their ability to travel. The company offers live and pre-recorded adventures to just about anywhere in the world. And while the site was designed for the estimated 40 million Americans with limited mobility, it is something anyone can do.
The backstory of the company is very interesting. Started by Brittany Palmer, a bilateral amputee, to provide real opportunities and experiences for millions of people who cannot travel or whose horizons are limited due to disabilities or conditions.
“These people, as well as the elderly, sick, and now even those that are COVID-19 vulnerable, can bring the world home with them like never before,” said Palmer in a press release.
Like any trip, you can “book” your experience and wander the ruins of Rome, tour ancient Ireland, or check out the amazing views of the Patagonia region of Argentina.
“The platform saves time for those exploring virtual getaways and ensures memorable experiences by qualifying guides,” the press release reads, “providing real-time interaction, securing payments, and rewarding users for their adventures.”
To better understand Beeyonder, I took a trip to the Grand Canal of Venice. My guide was a native of Venice and had lived her entire life there. She, like all Beeyonder guides, brings a sense of realness to the tours by weaving her personality into the storytelling. On my one-hour virtual journey, I learned there are literally no roads in Venice, about how the tides affect the Grand Canal, the secrets of the Rialto Bridge, and much about how Venetians navigate the canals and bridges.
On Beeyonder’s virtual trips, you can go solo or with a group. I do recommend the group experience, as I found the questions from my companions to be as interesting as the tour.
Know Before You Go
The website is very easy to navigate and offers you the choice of searching for your own adventure or selecting from those most popular at any given moment. On the live tours, you will have real-time interaction with your guides via Zoom, so be ready to learn, and come prepared to ask questions. The more you interact, the more fun the tour.
You can also use the platform to connect with other virtual touring companies, such as Rezdy, Withlocals, Take Walks, ToursByLocals, and Urban Adventures. These partnerships open up limitless possibilities to any traveler.
Interested in virtual travel? Here’s more: