THE BIG READ: Could virtual-reality travel now finally take off?
From the peaks of Yosemite to the Sistine Chapel, armchair adventures await the bold
When Tim Bajarin needs to get away from it all, he heads for the bottom of the ocean. Twenty metres below the surface, the California-based IT consultant likes to sit for half an hour and just watch the fish swim by. “This is my personal aquarium,” he says.
A veteran of more than 120 dives on trips to Hawaii and the Caribbean over the past 30 years, Bajarin has been forced to set aside his scuba kit for the foreseeable future. California is on statewide lockdown after the governor ordered residents to “shelter in place” until the coronavirus threat passes. So Bajarin has been swapping his dive mask for an Oculus Quest virtual-reality (VR) headset, using 360° videos in an app developed by National Geographic to return to the deep.