Movies are inspiring. Not only do they allow us to escape the mundane, they also trigger ideas and inspire our souls. With so many amazing Hollywood blockbusters and intricate indie films out there, it’s easy to watch films that inspire travel. Let’s run through some of the films that take you round the world on the silver screen and can make you want to pack your own bag and jump on a plane to breathtaking destinations.
Lord Of The Rings | New Zealand
It’s impossible to not be awe inspired by the grandeur of the New Zealand backdrop when you watch the Lord of The Rings trilogy. Incredible mountains, wondrous countryside, incredible location after incredible location. There are many tourist places that you can visit to feel like you’re on set with the Hobbits, but similarly there are also places off the beaten track that you can just take in by yourself. Mount Sunday in Canterbury and the blue waters of Kawarau Gorge are standouts.
Lost In Translation | Japan
The 2003 film starring Bill Murray and Scarlett Johansson has inspired many people to visit Japan, myself included. The connection between two strangers in an unknown and rather strange city is fantastic to observe. From the bright lights of the nightlife to the unchanged tradition and culture, Japan is perhaps the actual star of the film. You can even stay in the hotel that acts as a backdrop to a lot of the film. The Park Hyatt Hotel Tokyo is in the heart of Shinjuku and this district, along with Shibuya are pretty much were the entire film takes place. I dare you to watch it and not want to book a flight!
Under The Tuscan Sky | Italy
We stick with the year 2003 for our next film that inspires travel. Under The Tuscan Sun stars Diane Lane as a writer going through a divorce. She decides to take a trip gifted to her by a friend to Tuscany where she can hopefully get her life back on track. The film was mainly shot in the town of Cortona and the magnificent hills around Tuoro sul Trasimeno. The film might even make you look at life differently as the main character is on a journey of rebuilding. However it should definitely make you want to head to the glorious region of Tuscany in Italy. Don’t forget to pack your camera!
The Beach | Thailand
Starring Leonardo DiCaprio, The Beach really put Thailand on the map. The central character comes into the possession of a map which apparently leads to an island paradise. It does, but the paradise isn’t exactly perfect. Away from the world of film, Thailand is on the list for almost every backpacker and student taking a gap year. The location of the beach is actually called Maya Bay but it is closed to tourists due to the popularity the 20 year old film brought to the area. That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t visit Thailand though, aside from beaches there are some incredible places to see including waterfalls and the hustle and bustle of downtown Bangkok where the main character starts his journey from.
Into The Wild | Alaska
Have you ever thought about just selling all your stuff, packing a bag and going to live somewhere new? This is what happens in Into The Wild. Based on real events, a graduate hitchhikes across America and tries to live in Alaska. He changes and grows as a person along the way. The film might inspire travel but it might change your outlook as well. The iconic bus from the movie was left on location in Alaska for years but has since been removed. It’s an amazing film from Sean Penn.
Amelie | France
We can’t discuss inspiring films without the wonderful Amelie and the Parisian backdrop of the movie. Starring Audrey Tautou, many people cite this as their all time favourite. The cinematography, the soundtrack, it pulls you to Paris. I won’t give away too much of the story but it’s completely mesmerising and will inspire travel and much more!
What films do you find inspiring? Which movies have already inspired you to travel?