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A virtual tour is a vicarious travel experience. Virtual connotes computer-mediated, Internet-enabled, multimedia explorations, usually of real destinations. A comparable term in education contexts is virtual field trip. Virtual tours can extend to imaginary places, and the concept of a destination can be stretched, for example, to explore the inside of an atomic particle or a human body. Vicarious travel has a long history. Virtual tours in education contexts expand learning possibilities, though their use has both pros and cons.

History

Virtual tourists in earlier times sometimes were called armchair travelers. Armchair travel has always been viewed as broadly educational, whether informally for the general public or in schools. Travel descriptions are a starting point in the evolution of virtual tours. Travel literature dates at least to ...

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