The best at home entertainment right now

If you’re going stir crazy at home, rest assured there are many ways to keep yourself entertained if you know where to look. If you’ve read all your books, can’t find anything worth watching on TV, have rearranged your furniture and colour coded your entire wardrobe, you may be wondering what else is there to do?

In times like these when many are unable to leave their homes due to the coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic, technology can be more helpful than ever. Here are five ways to ward off boredom, with a splash of culture added in for bonus measure. The great thing about these options is you don’t need a user login and they don’t cost a cent.

Watch a movie

There’s Netflix, YouTube and a myriad of other streaming services which will set you up with films to watch, but if you want something a bit different, ACMI has you covered. The Melbourne-based Australian Centre for the Moving Image is currently hosting weekly movie nights called Virtual Cinémathèque. The line-up is a diverse array of classic and contemporary flicks from around the world. Get the popcorn popping for Wednesday nights when the films go live on YouTube and other free services– all you need to do is click play on the video.

You can also watch Japanese cinema thanks to Moosic Lab X Japanese Film Festival – click here to get watching.

Listen to music

Playing your favourite tunes is a sure-fire way to boost your mood. If you’re missing out on the experience of seeing live music, there are lots of ways you can replicate the concert experience (with the bonus of not having to worry about getting home!).

Melbourne Symphony Orchestra’s YouTube page features full concerts of various classical musical performances for you to enjoy from the comfort of your couch.

Billboard has compiled a list of music livestreams and virtual concerts to watch, so you’re sure to find a genre of music you enjoy. Why not branch out and listen to a style you wouldn’t ordinarily? You might find a new passion for a type of music or artist you’ve not been a fan of previously.

Explore a gallery or museum

Many galleries and museums around the world are offering virtual tours and behind the scenes look at their collections. If you’ve always wanted to check out galleries and museums around the world, now is your chance to do so without needing to renew your passport.
This list recommends great venues to explore and explains how to do so.

Closer to home, the National Gallery of Victoria has a channel of virtual tours and 3D views of its exhibitions. Click here and then on the video you’re interested in to take a look.

Wander through a garden

Our time in nature may have been reduced for the time being, but you can enjoy the beautiful sights of parks and gardens over your computer. Visit NSW’s website contains a list of virtual tours you can do, such as in Wendy Whiteley’s Secret Garden, the gardens of Sydney’s Government House and in Cumberland Plain Woodland.
Click on the links on the Visit NSW website to be taken to the tours you’re interested in.

Further afield, Arundel Castle in West Sussex hosted its annual tulip festival online this year. You can see photos and videos of the festival here.

Connect with wildlife

If you’re wondering what zoo and sanctuary animals are up to right now, there’s an easy way to find out.
Zoos Victoria have set up 24/7 webcams so you can watch the antics and daily happenings of your favourite creatures. From the website you will be able to click on individual videos to see what is happening in that enclosure.

It’s a hard ask to be compelling all the time, so if you find yourself staring at piles of dirt or empty trees, you might want to specifically tune in at feeding times. Each video has a description of when the animals’ feeding times are so you can watch then. These happen several times a day so you’re sure to see some action. If not, the zookeepers might keep you entertained!

Main image: Drop by Drawing brought to you by the NGV

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