Movies That Inspire Travel
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Maya Bay, Thailand
In "The Beach" backpackers search for a hidden beach in Thailand, inaccessible to tourists. Since the movie was filmed in 1999, Maya Bay has become one of the main tourist attractions in Thailand. The film inspires visitors to make the trek to this secluded area for a glimpse of paradise.
Colosseum of Rome
The Eternal City's famous sights are the backdrop for the love story in the "Roman Holiday." While the leads, played by Hollywood icons, Audrey Hepburn and Gregory Peck, fall for each other, we fall for all things Italy.
"Mamma Mia" created a tourism boom to the Greek Islands for destination weddings. Mesmerized by the film's spectacular scenery, fans booked trips to this Mediterranean paradise to have a Big Fat Greek Wedding of their own. Shown here: Port on the island of Naxos.
Surf and Travel
When "Endless Summer" came out in 1966, not only did it increase the popularity of surfing in general, but it also created a 'surf and travel' culture that inspired surfers, experts and novices alike, to travel the world in search of the perfect wave.
Santa Barbara's Wine Country
In "Sideways," two middle-aged men, Miles and Jack, try to recapture their carefree days with a "mancation" centered around wine and women. The movie created a huge boost to tourism not only to the Napa wine region, but also to Santa Barbara's wine country, where most of the movie took place.
Milford Sound, New Zealand
Think you can only visit J. R. R. Tolkien's Middle Earth in your imagination? Escape into the epic fantasy of "Lord of the Rings" by visiting one of the locations in the film, Milford Sound (pictured here) in the South Island, New Zealand.
The draw of "Out of Africa" isn't just icons Robert Redford and Meryl Streep playing passionate lovers, but stunning scenes of Kenya's raw and untamed landscapes. After the movie was released, Kenya became a popular tourist destination for safaris.
In "Lost in Translation," two American strangers abroad form an unlikely bond in their isolation. Tokyo's high-energy culture wakes up their passion for life and for us, our passion for travel.
"Under the Tuscan Sun," based on Frances Mayes' memoir, shows a recently divorced American woman venturing off to Italy to buy and restore a villa in Tuscany. The film inspired many travelers to seek out the film's locations in the stunning countryside. There has even been an increase in expats following in Mayes' footsteps and buying homes in the same area.
La Push, Near Forks, Washington
The "Twilight" phenomenon breathed new life into the town of Forks, WA, with "twihards" flocking in droves to the locations from the book/film. Vampire- and werewolf-scouting aside, La Push (pictured here) is 12 miles from Forks and home to some of the most stunning scenery on the Olympic Peninsula.
Bridge Alexandre in Paris
The film "Amelie" shows a whimsical side of Paris with the story of a secret matchmaker who kindles many love affairs in the city, and then finally gets one of her own. With beautiful shots of the city, the film rekindles our love affair with Paris.
In Woody Allen's "Vicky Cristina Barcelona", two friends spend a summer in Spain; unbeknownst to them, they have an affair with the same painter. It wasn't just the stunning cast and sexy plot, but the iconic shots of summer in Barcelona that left us seduced by Spain.