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This Interactive “Sound Map” Lets Everyone Experience The World’s Forests From Home.

Ever wonder what it sounds like to be immersed in the trees of Madagascar? How about the songs of Slovakian nightingales? Now, you can experience nature around the globe, all with the click of a mouse!

The novel coronavirus pandemic has canceled countless events, including a three-day festival in England that celebrates the connection between humans and the world. Luckily, it has also encouraged people to get creative. In doing so, this group opened up an incredible way to access new aural experiences!

Wild Rumpus, a group based in the U.K., organizes outdoor art and cultural events. After they had to cancel their annual Timber Festival this summer, the organizers put their heads together to find a way around COVID-19 restrictions.

Their solution? To turn the festival into a virtual celebration of nature! They quickly created “Sounds of the Forest,” an interactive map that features chirps, rain showers, and other woodland noises from around the globe.

A few months ago, the group asked their community to send in one-minute recordings of their local forests, and the response was overwhelmingly positive!

“We listened to exotic forests in Hong Kong, lemurs in the forest in Madagascar, nightingales in Slovakia,” Sarah Bird, the director of Wild Rumpus, told CNN. “We realized that not only had it captured people’s imaginations, but at a time when we felt so isolated, it was an amazing way to feel connected.”

They have since received clips from the U.S., Chile, Hungary, New Zealand, Indonesia, and Malaysia, to name a few. Today, the map features sounds from six continents!

Users can either listen online or download their favorite sounds to enjoy later. Either way, the map provides a one-of-a-kind experience to help people relax, de-stress, and “travel” to their hearts’ content!

“At a time when everything in society was being questioned and there was so much uncertainty, we felt that the natural world offered much reassurance and constancy,” Sarah added.

What a great idea! Even better, Wild Rumpus has selected four musicians to compose music based on these sounds, which will be performed live during next year’s Timber Festival. Until then, you can check out the map and treat your ears here.

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