Movies That Make You Yearn to Travel


Movies seem to have a lot of effect on us. Some can terrify us to the point we will never swim in the ocean again, take a cruise ship vacation or stay in a motel sitting on top of a hill. Perhaps even keep us from taking a shower in a motel!

One thing a movie does for me is make me want to travel. Today I am exploring some movies that make you yearn to travel.

The first type of movie that comes to mind would be the travelogue. To be perfectly honest, I’m not sure any travelogue has really made me want to pack my bags and hit the road. If any did, I certainly cannot remember the titles.

I suspect I have been influenced by television shows about travel and will admit to being somewhat addicted to the shows about buying beach front homes. In fact a television show about the true story behind The Sound of Music is what made me think about this topic.

Gazebo Replica by Bede735 via wikimedia commons

Until I watched Diane Sawyer and Julie Andrews talk about filming The Sound of Music, it had never occurred to me that it was filmed on location in Austria.

It certainly never occurred to me that tourists traveled to see the locations that were used in the filming of the movie. So I guess I will need to list The Sound of Music as one of the films that make people want to travel.

Woody Allen is a person who generates a great deal of opinions both pro and con. His films are often lauded as among the best, but his personal life is often scorned by the public. I look at his movies as just that, movies. With that said, I list three of his films on my list of movies that made me want to travel.

Christopher Street by Beyond My Ken via wikimedia commons

The first is the film Manhattan.  This film evokes the city of New York in almost every scene. It even opens with a montage of Manhattan scenes. It does not take a lot to make me want to travel to New York City and this movie definitely has that effect on me.

A second film by Woody Allen is Vicky Cristina Barcelona. I think I went to see this film not knowing what to expect. What I got was a great trip to Spain with two lovely young ladies, a handsome Spanish painter and his somewhat crazy ex-wife. The plot is much too convoluted to try to explain, but the trip to Spain is well worth taking.

My third Woody Allen film is Midnight in Paris. Of the three, this is my favorite. I have always been fascinated with Paris of the 1920s when Hemingway, Fitzgerald and Gertrude Stein roamed the left bank.

In this movie our hero played by Owen Wilson walks the streets of Paris each night at midnight. He is picked up by an antique automobile from the 20’s era and is whisked away to spend the evening with his literary heroes. I want to do that.

napa valley by Aaron Logen via wikimedia commons

There are other movies that have made me want to travel or like National Lampoon’s Vacation and European Vacation, have reminded me of travels I have already experienced. I wonder how many others saw themselves in Chevy Chase’s Clark Griswold.

Sometimes a movie makes you dream of doing something you never actually thought much about before. Such a movie was Sideways. This film took Thomas Haden Church and Paul Giamatti on a road trip through the Napa Valley of California on a wine tasting adventure. The plot certainly carried the movie, but the idea of that road trip through the California wine country is what really stuck with me.

In Bruges is a movie about two hit men who are hiding out in Bruges, Belgium while they wait on further instructions from their boss. The movie has wonderful scenes of the beautiful city of Bruges.

easy rider bike by Evoluke via wikimedia commons

This film brought back memories of my own visit to Bruges, but also made me want to make a return trip.

I can’t really talk about movies that have made me want to travel without at least mentioning Easy Rider. I think many of us who made it through the 60s and 70s saw this movie at some point. I doubt if I am the only one who had the urge to get on a motorcycle and ride, ride, ride.

My favorite scene is where Peter Fonda asked Jack Nicholson if he had a helmet.  Nicholson answers, “Have I got a helmet? Ha ha ha,” and in the next scene we see him on the back of Peter Fonda’s  motorcycle with football helmet heading to New Orleans.

taj mahal by Nuria Pueyo via wikimedia commons

This brings me to the most recent movie I’ve seen that made me want to travel. I need to state at this point, I have never wanted to visit India.

India does not get a lot of good press when it comes to being a travel destination. I know the Taj Mahal is in India, but that is not enough to make me want to visit.

So what has made me think about a trip to India? The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel is the movie that has made me consider taking a trip to India. In fact, the movie makes you think you might even want to retire there.

There is now a second movie out, The Second Best Marigold Hotel, which we haven’t seen yet. If it is nearly as good as the first one, we may have to check on flights and retirement locations in India.

Next: Being a Tourist in New York City

More from TripSided