Last updated on September 13, 2021
I was very excited to find that it’s possible to do some of Airbnb’s experiences online. It’s a great way to bring a touch of travel to the comfort of your own home – perfect for during these pandemic times, or for whenever actual travel isn’t on the cards.
To quickly fill you in, Airbnb Experiences are events hosted by people around the world, normally introducing you to some of the culture of the local area. For example, my friend Dani does a tour of the best pizza spots in Brooklyn, and many people do walking tours, concerts, cookery classes and all sorts of more unusual things, like playing at being a mermaid for a day in San Diego. They’re definitely worth checking out whenever you travel.
But for times when travel isn’t an option, these online experiences are ideal. From meditating with a Japanese Buddhist Monk to learning to Flamenco, these are some of the brilliant ways you can travel from home with Airbnb experiences.
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10 Airbnb Experiences you can do from home
Meditation with a Japanese Buddhist Monk
Learn two types of meditation – a 20-minute chanting mantra and a 10-minute breathing practice – led by Kuniatsu, a Japanese Buddhist monk. Kuniatsu will also share his story of how be came to be a monk, and will answers too. He’s also willing to adapt the class if you’re interested in other practices such as meditation with a candle or mirror, Qigong, Sutra copying, and counting meditation, one of the basic Zen practices.
Reminds me of our time in Koya-san during our Japan trip.
What the guests say: “Kuniatsu was so lovely and the experience was a great way to start the day. I hadn’t tried chanting meditation before and it was really grounding. So cool to meditate alongside people from Rome, London, San Francisco and Kyoto.”
Sangria and Secrets with Drag Queens
This brilliantly unique experience is regularly sold out when done in person, and is now available online too, bringing happiness and sangria to your quarantine. A group of fabulous drag queens in Lisbon will teach you how to make sangria from scratch while doing a unique live performance. And once the class is over, you get to hang out and chat, making friends from all over the world. I reckon this might just be the best experience on the list.
What the guests say: “This was so much fun! Pedro, Africa and their friends did an amazing job. I learned a lot of cooking tips and am so excited to use “grandmas secret recipe” in the future. They were very interactive and it was fun to watch even if you were not cooking along. Great drag performances, can’t wait to see you in person in Lisbon!“
AirBnB listing: Sangria and Secrets with Drag Queens
Price: From $23 per person
Duration: 1.5 hours
Class size: Up to 30 people
Location: Lisbon, Portugal
Intro to Flamenco with a Spanish Dancer
There are quite a few dance class options on Airbnb experiences, but this is one of my favourites. Run by a flamenco teacher in Seville, you’ll be learning the art of flamenco from the heart of the tradition. The class includes a brief intro to the culture followed by a dance class teaching the basic moves, from body positions to hand and footwork, and the fabulous flamenco rhythms. By the end, you’ll be able to complete one full flamenco routine. And there’s a chance to hang out and chat at the end. It’s recommended you dress the part to gte the most out of the experience.
What the guests say: “An absolutely fabulous experience! Eva is so kind and charismatic, I honestly felt like I made a friend. I was a bit insecure about dancing via video, but this was so comfortable and engaging. Eva is a great teacher and storyteller.”
Skincare and Natural Cosmetics Workshop
In this one-hour class, natural skincare expert Beatrice Ambra will teach you how to take simple ingredients and make natural skin care products at home. The class covers two recipes for a face and body scrub, and Beatrice will also teach you about different skin types and what might suit you best.
What the guests say: “This is great experience! I really enjoyed getting to meet Beatrice, she is extremely knowledgeable in her field and answered all my questions with so much passion and love. I can easily tell that she is an expert when it comes to skin/ body beauty. The recipes she gave us for the face and body scrub are awesome and really simple/ cheap. Beatrice was a great host and this experience was definitely awesome!”
Tarot Reading with Mak Jagger
Mak Jagger has hosted an Airbnb Tarot Happy Hour for the past two years in Austin, and has bought her experience online. The session covers an intro to tarot, plus a personal six-card reading to gain insight and perspective on where you are and where you’d like to go. The session is done in a small group, but you can also request one-on-one sessions.
Another option is this Turkish Fortune Cookie Reading.
What the guests say: “Mak was extremely warm, welcoming, and knowledgeable. I really enjoyed her approach to the session, especially the deep historical context. I learned a great deal about tarot, and I thoroughly enjoyed my personal reading. I would absolutely recommend her!”
AirBnB listing: Tarot reading with Mak Jagger
Price: From $45 per person
Duration: 2 hour
Class size: Up to 4 people
Location: Austin, USA
Backstage with a Magician
Discover the secrets of magic with this backstage tour that takes you through some interactive magic tricks to fool yourselves in your own homes. Magician Noah will also share some of his favourite books, magic gadgets and funny stories as well as showing you behind the scenes in his magic workshop. It all culminates in a show of close-up sleight-of-hand magic that will have you wondering what’s going on.
What the guests say: “I’ve seen many magic shows on Broadway, off Broadway, Magic Castle in LA, … Noah is world class. Charming routine and many original tricks — or at least tricks from all-time masters. Some were charming (socks) and others were stunning — esp. the finale. I’ve recommended it to a dozen friends. Amazing way to escape what’s going on for an hour. A total bargain, too.”
Creative Drawing with a Cartoonist
In this session, Garbriel, an artist in Oaxaca will teach you to colour and draw and create a beautiful postcard by the end of your session. The class includes warm-ups, technique tutorials, experimentation, and a chance to ask questions and discuss your process. It’s a great one for team building.
Another online drawing class on Airbnb is this Drink and Draw session in Portugal.
What the guests say: “Gabriel was a wonderful host, and he showed a lot of care of his guests. He had a lot of insights and great recommendations for everyone to continue working on their style of drawings. He mentioned he was an art history teacher, and it really showed. I highly recommend this experience, it’s simple, and anyone at any level could really enjoy it. Thank you, Gabriel!”
Secrets of Hollywood Sound Effects
If you’re a film or music buff, this is a fun opportunity to get a behind-the-scenes insight into the magic of making sound effects with a Hollywood Foley artist. The session covers an overview of the art of foley, stories from major studios, and a tour of Adam’s home studio in L.A, including demonstrations of the gear and props he uses. He’ll then show you step-by-step how to add foley to a short film, including how to layer sounds and put it all in sync.
What the guests say: “Highly recommend this experience! I learned a lot in an hour about what a Foley artist does and what makes their work so unique. Adam was a great host and had lots of interesting stories to tell. I will definitely be booking his experience in person if we are ever in LA!”
Workout and Q&A with an Olympian
There are quite a few Olympians on Airbnb experiences offering workout classes, goal setting workshops and more. In this class, Elfje, a bobsledding champion and personal trainer will lead you in a one-hour workout followed by a 30-minute Q&A. It’s suitable for all fitness levels.
What the guests say: “This was an awesome experience! Elfje had great energy, gave modifications for all exercises, and even encouraged by name if we were doing something well or if we needed to push ourselves to finish each exercise. Loved it. The Q&A was really special too. I didn’t know a lot about bobsledding before this experience, but now I want to watch some races 🙂 thanks again, Elfje!“
Learn the art of mime from Ivan at the International School of Dramatic Corporal Mime in Paris. He’ll use examples from the history of mime to teach you about the effort of learning the seemingly simple. A discussion at the end will teach about the history and contemporary context of mime.
What the guests say: “Oh my gosh this was soooooo cool!!! What a fantastic opportunity. I had no idea how much coordination, strength and balance went into miming. Ivan was very sweet and shared his wealth of knowledge with the group. I felt like it was a perfect class for beginners. Highly recommend, what a fun way to spend an hour!”
Let me now if you try any of these!