My Top Five Travel-Inspiring Movies

Travel inspiration can come in many forms, and often times, at the most unexpected places. For a film buff like me, movies are often the best inspiration for travel destinations and activities.

I recall watching movies as a little girl and dreaming of all the places I wanted to visit and have adventures in. Never in my wildest dreams did I have ever believe I could do all that and more!

Here are some of my top five travel-inspiring movies:

1. Midnight in Paris. I love the idea of traveling and getting transported into a whole new time and place. While I’ve never experienced anything in my travels as surreal as Owen Wilson’s character in Woody Allen’s “Midnight in Paris,” I can certainly relate to the frenetic, almost obsessive way we can lose ourselves into situations abroad that we just cannot seem to make sense of. Plus, Adrien Brody as Salvador Dali is absolute genius!

2. Endless Summer. I love a good surf movie and it doesn’t get any better than the classic, “Endless Summer.” Shot in 1966 and following two Californian surf legends chasing the sun and surf around the globe in search of the perfect waves, it made me want to follow in their footsteps. So much so in fact, that the idea of surfing for a year around the world is one of my travel bucket list items!

3. Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom. I owe a large part of my fascination of India to this Steven Spielberg adventure. I fell more and more captivated with the exotic land the closer Indy got to recovering the Sankara stones and I knew that one day, I would have to see this intriguing country for myself. I have no idea why the heart ripping out, live snake and monkey brain eating, and human sacrificing didn’t turn me off, but I’m happy to report that I have spent a great deal of time in India and none of that actually happens.

4. Darjeeling Limited. I absolutely adore the quirkiness of Wes Andersen and in his wacky and brilliantly executed film, “The Darjeeling Limited,” he explores the spiritual journey (and magnificent train ride) taken by three estranged brothers in India. Throw in long-simmering jealousies, India’s relaxed standards on over-the-counter medications, a lost cobra, and a laminating machine, all set in some very quintessential India locales, and you’ve got yourself one hell of an entertaining travel movie.

5. Weekend at Bernie’s II. You read that right. I am listing Weekend at Bernie’s II as one of my top travel-inspiring movies. Hear me out! Andrew McCarthy and Jonathan Silverman are in white sand, crystal blue watered St. Thomas where they spend their time befriending locals, scuba diving, and looking for buried treasure. Sounds like an ideal tropical holiday to me. So what if they’re doing it with a voodoo-possessed dancing corpse? I’ve had worst travel companions than a dead guy who likes to shake a leg every now and then.

So while these five travel-inspiring movies aren’t necessarily all high-caliber, award-winning films, they did inspire me to travel to new destinations and try activities that I may not have otherwise.

Do you have a favorite travel-inspiring movie? Share below!


  • Melissa says:

    I LOVED Weekend at Bernie’s 2 growing up. The sights, the music, the people…I remember being 10 and thinking “ooohhh, I want to go to there”.

    • Connvoyage says:

      It’s a sad state of the world today when two 10-year old girls watch a movie about two guys kidnapping a dead man and doing terrible things to him and not even register all that is wrong about that. But yes. I had the exact thought. =)

  • John Evans says:

    Thanks for calling attention to Wes Anderson’s “The Darjeeling Limited.” It’s on my list. His “Moonrise Kingdom” is so funny and quirky — one of our favorites.

  • Melissa says:

    Midnight in Paris is my #1 travel-inspiring movie as well. This post was worth reading for the “I’ve had worse travel companions than a dead guy” line alone.
    Melissa recently posted…The Sun Sets on Lake TravisMy Profile

  • Sarah says:

    Nice selection! On my list I have ‘the way back’, ‘into the wild’, ‘l’auberge español’, ‘Lawrence of Arabia’, Jurassic park (LOL)… And many more!
    Sarah recently posted…Backpacking in Africa? Yes you can!My Profile

    • Connvoyage says:

      L’auberge Espanol and Jurassic Park are excellent additions, though I’m going to have to be honest, Into the Wild (the real life story, the book, and the film) were extremely underwhelming for me. I feel a little bit of a rant coming on so I’ll just leave it at that for now… =)

      Jurassic Park, how cool would that be if that were a real place? I mean, aside from all the dinosaurs escaping and trying to eat everyone… But what beautiful scenery!

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