41 Best Travel Movies: Films That Inspire Wanderlust

Looking for some awesome travel films to fuel your wanderlust? Check out this list of 41 of my favorite and best travel movies to add to your watch list:

Eat, Pray, Love

One of my favorite books and movie, Eat, Pray, Love is the ultimate wanderlust/travel to find yourself kind of movie!

The Secret Life of Walter Mitty

“When his job along with that of his co-worker are threatened, Walter takes action in the real world embarking on a global journey that turns into an adventure more extraordinary than anything he could have ever imagined.” – IMBd

Into the Wild

“After graduating from Emory University, top student and athlete Christopher McCandless abandons his possessions, gives his entire $24,000 savings account to charity and hitchhikes to Alaska to live in the wilderness. Along the way, Christopher encounters a series of characters that shape his life.” – IMDb

Midnight in Paris

“This is a romantic comedy set in Paris about a family that goes there because of business, and two young people who are engaged to be married in the fall have experiences there that change their lives. It’s about a young man’s great love for a city, Paris, and the illusion people have that a life different from theirs would be much better.” – Apple TV

Wild

With the dissolution of her marriage and the death of her mother, Cheryl Strayed has lost all hope. After years of reckless, destructive behavior, she makes a rash decision. With absolutely no experience, driven only by sheer determination, Cheryl hikes more than a thousand miles of the Pacific Crest Trail, alone. WILD powerfully captures the terrors and pleasures of one young woman forging ahead against all odds on a journey that maddens, strengthens, and ultimately heals her.” – Google Play

The Beach

“Richard (Leonardo DiCaprio) is a young American backpacker, willing to risk his life for just one thing: the mind-blowing rush he can only get from braving the ultimate adventure. After hearing the improbable tale of a secret island – the perfect beach, unsullied by tourists – Richard sets off on a journey to find paradise on Earth. But Richard soon discovers that what seems like paradise can hide a deadly secret. Now desperate to escape, Richard explores the hidden perils and dark places that lurk just beyond the shores of paradise” – Apple TV

Best Travel Movies - The Beach

The Darjeeling Limited

“A year after their father’s death, three American brothers who haven’t spoken since the funeral embark on a soul-searching journey across India. Their “spiritual quest”, however, veers rapidly off-course and a new, unplanned journey suddenly begins.” – Google Play

180° South

“180° South: Conquerors of the Useless follows Jeff Johnson as he retraces the epic 1968 journey of his heroes Yvon Chouinard and Doug Tompkins to Patagonia. Along the way he gets shipwrecked off Easter Island, surfs the longest wave of his life – and prepares himself for a rare ascent of Cerro Corcovado. Jeff’s life turns when he meets up in a rainy hut with Chouinard and Tompkins who, once driven purely by a love of climbing and surfing, now value above all the experience of raw nature – and have come to Patagonia to spend their fortunes to protect it.” – Google Play

Life of Pi

“Embark on the adventure of a lifetime in this visual masterpiece from Oscar winner Ang Lee*, based on the best-selling novel. After a cataclysmic shipwreck, an Indian boy named Pi finds himself stranded on a lifeboat with a ferocious Bengal tiger. Together, they face nature’s majestic grandeur and fury on an epic journey of discovery.” – Google Play

Life in a Day

“Life In A Day is a historic film capturing for future generations what it was like to be alive on the 24th of July, 2010. Executive produced by Ridley Scott and directed by Kevin Macdonald.” – on YouTube

Watch on YouTube

Lost in Translation

“Bill Murray and Scarlett Johansson star in this flat-out hilarious film about two Americans who develop a surprising friendship while venturing through Tokyo.” – Google Play

Traveling Movies - Lost in Translation

Up

Maybe not a movie you’d normally find on a list of best travel movies, but I love Up! “Carl Fredrickson, a retired balloon salesman, is part rascal, part dreamer who is ready for his last chance at high-flying excitement. Tying thousands of balloons to his house, Carl sets off to the lost world of his childhood dreams. Unbeknownst to Carl, Russell, an overeager 8-year old Wildnerness Explorer who has never ventured beyond his backyard, is in the wrong place at the wrong time — Carl’s front porch! The world’s most unlikely duo reach new heights and meets fantastic friends like Dug, a dog with a special collar that allows him to speak, and Kevin, the rare 13-foot tall flightless bird. Stuck together in the wilds of the jungle, Carl realizes that sometimes life’s biggest adventures aren’t the ones you set out for.” – Google Play

Up in the Air

“Ryan Bingham (Academy Award® winner, George Clooney) is truly living the high life. Flying all over the world on business, he never stops moving…until he meets Alex, a fellow passenger and learns that life isn’t about the journey, but the connections we make along the way.” – iTunes

Travel Movies - up in the air

Out of Africa

“Hoping to forge a better life, Denmark native Karen Blixen (Meryl Streep) enters into a marriage of convenience with a womanizing baron. But when the couple moves to Nairobi, Karen falls in love with a free-spirited hunter (Robert Redford) who can’t be tied down. Director Sydney Pollack’s lush period drama earned seven Academy Awards, including statues for Best Picture, Best Screenplay and Best Cinematography.” – Google Play

Roman Holiday

“Roman Holiday was nominated for ten Academy Awards®, and Audrey Hepburn captured an Oscar® for her portrayal of a modern-day princess rebelling against her royal obligations who explores Rome on her own. She meets Gregory Peck, an American newspaperman who, seeking an exclusive story, pretends ignorance of her true identity. But his plan falters as they fall in love. Eddie Albert contributes to the fun as Peck’s carefree cameraman pal.” – Google Play

Travel Movies - Roman Holiday

Watch on: Sony Crackle (free), Apple TV, Google Play

Tracks

“From the producers of THE KING’S SPEECH comes this remarkable true story of Robyn Davidson, a young woman who leaves her urban life to trek through almost 2,000 miles of sprawling Australian desert. Along her journey of self-discovery, she meets National Geographic photographer Rick Smolan, who begins to photograph her life-changing voyage.” – Apple TV

Watch on: Amazon, Apple TV, Google Play

Under the Tuscan Sun

“UNDER THE TUSCAN SUN follows San Francisco writer Frances Mayes (Diane Lane) to Italy as a good friend offers her a special gift — 10 days in Tuscany. Once there, she is captivated by its beauty and warmth, and impulsively buys an aging, but very charming, villa. Fully embracing new friends and local color, she finds herself immersed in a life-changing adventure filled with enough unexpected surprises, laughter, friendship, and romance to restore her new home — and her belief in second chances.” – Google Play

Before Sunrise

“Ethan Hawke and Julie Delpy star as two young people who meet–and whose lives are forever changed–on a train from Budapest to Paris. They may have only one night, but when soul mates find each other, anything can happen Before Sunrise.” – iTunes

The Endless Summer

“They call it The Endless Summer, the ultimate surfing adventure, crossing the globe in search of the perfect wave. From the uncharted waters of West Africa, to the shark-filled seas of Australia, to the tropical paradise of Tahiti and beyond, two California surfers, Robert August and Mike Hynson, accomplish in a few months what most people never get to do in a lifetime – they live their dream.” – iTunes

Movies with Travel - The Endless Summer

Watch on: Amazon, Apple TV

Vicky Cristina Barcelona

“Two young American women, Vicky and Cristina come to Barcelona for a summer holiday. Vicky is sensible and engaged to be married; Cristina is emotionally and sexually adventurous. In Barcelona, they’re drawn into a series of unconventional romantic entanglements with Juan Antonio, a charismatic painter, who is still involved with his tempestuous ex-wife Maria Elena. Set against the luscious Mediterranean sensuality of Barcelona, VICKY CRISTINA BARCELONA is Woody Allen’s funny and open-minded celebration of love in all its configurations.” – Google Play

Watch on: Amazon, Apple TV, Google Play

Two For the Road

On their third identical voyage from London to the French Riviera, Joanna Wallace (Audrey Hepburn) and husband Mark (Albert Finney) explore their 12-year marriage in a series of wry and illuminating flashbacks. They reminisce about the glorious beginning of their love affair, the early years of marriage and the events that led to their subsequent infidelities. As they try to understand their relationship, they must accept how they have changed if they are to rekindle their original love… The film is arguably one of the most stylistically influential movies from the ’60s.”

Movies with Travel in it - Two for the Road

Moana

“From Walt Disney Animation Studios comes “Moana,” a sweeping, CG-animated feature film about an adventurous teenager who sails out on a daring mission to save her people. During her journey, Moana (voice of Auli’i Cravalho) meets the once-mighty demigod Maui (voice of Dwayne Johnson), who guides her in her quest to become a master wayfinder. Together, they sail across the open ocean on an action-packed voyage, encountering enormous monsters and impossible odds, and along the way, Moana fulfills the ancient quest of her ancestors and discovers the one thing she’s always sought: her own identity.” – Disney

Watch on: Amazon, Apple TV, Google Play, or on Disney+

Away We Go

“John Krasinski (The Office) and Maya Rudolph (Saturday Night Live) star in the heartfelt film that explores the comedic twists and turns in one couple’s journey across contemporary America. Anticipating the birth of their first child, longtime couple Burt and Verona embark on an ambitious itinerary to visit friends and family in order to find their perfect home.” – Universal Studios

The Bucket List

 Jack Nicholson and Morgan Freeman star in the comedic drama The Bucket List, a touching, no- holds-barred adventure that shows it’s never too late to live life to its fullest. “Two terminally ill men escape from a cancer ward and head off on a road trip with a wish list of to-dos before they die.” – IMDb

Lion

“A five-year-old Indian boy is adopted by an Australian couple after getting lost hundreds of kilometers from home. 25 years later, he sets out to find his lost family.” – IMDb

Watch on: Amazon, Apple TV

Crazy Rich Asians

“This contemporary romantic comedy, based on a global bestseller, follows native New Yorker Rachel Chu to Singapore to meet her boyfriend’s family.” – IMDb

This is another movie that is not necessarily about travel, but after watching it, Singapore jumped to the top of my bucket list so I had to add it to this Best Travel Movie list!

Best Travel Movies - Crazy Rich Asians

Watch on: Amazon,  Google Play, Hulu

The Motorcycle Diaries

“Based on a true life story, The Motorcycle Diaries is an inspiring and thrilling adventure that traces the youthful origins of a revolutionary spirit. The film follows two daring friends, Ernesto “Che” Guevara (Gael Garcia Bernal, Y Tu Mama Tambien) and Alberto Granado (Rodrigo de la Serna), who hop on the back of a beat-up motorcycle for a breathtaking and exciting road trip across Latin America.” – Google Play

Letters to Juliet

“In Verona, Italy – the beautiful city where Romeo first met Juliet – there is a place where the heartbroken leave notes asking Juliet for her help. It’s there that aspiring writer Sophie (Amanda Seyfried) finds a 50-year-old letter that will change her life forever. As she sets off on a romantic journey of the heart with the letter’s author, Claire (Vanessa Redgrave), now a grandmother, and her handsome grandson (Christopher Egan), all three will discover that sometimes the greatest love story ever told is your own.” – Google Play

The Art of Travel

“Conner Layne  is about to embark on an adventure – just not the one he had planned. After discovering his fiance is having an affair with his best friend, he leaves her at the altar and heads off on his honeymoon alone. 

While experiencing the wonders that South America offers, he meets a friendly couple – Darlene and her husband, Christopher, who are planning a dangerous trip across the Darien Gap. Along with a ragtag group of foreigners, they venture on a 100-mile long journey through the undeveloped jungle that separates Panama and Columbia. Ready to leave his past behind, Conner joins the unknown for the quest of a lifetime.” – Apple TV

Watch on: Amazon, Apple TV, Google Play

Rio + Rio 2

Laugh if you want, but after seeing this movie in theaters, I have been dying to go to Rio adn explore South America! 

Hector and The Search for Happiness

“Hector is a quirky psychiatrist who has become tired of his humdrum life, yet he’s offering advice to patients who are just not getting happier. So he embarks on a global quest in hopes of uncovering the elusive secret formula for true happiness.”

Couples Retreat

Couples Retreat is another romantic comedy movie that’s set in such a beautiful place, I just had to include it!

A Map for Saturday

“On a trip around the world, every day feels like Saturday. A MAP FOR SATURDAY reveals a world of long-term, solo travel through the stories of trekkers on four continents. The documentary finds backpackers helping neglected Thai tsunami victims. It explains why Nepal’s guesthouses are empty and Brazil’s stoplights are ignored. But at its core, SATURDAY tracks the emotional arc of extreme long-term travelers; teenagers and senior citizens who wondered, “What would it be like to travel the world?” Then did it.”

Watch on: Amazon

Easy Rider

“Through the open country and desert lands, two bikers head from L.A to New Orleans, and along the way, meet a man who bridges a counter-culture gap they are unaware of.” – IMDb

One Week

“ONE WEEK tells the story of 20-something Ben Tyler (Joshua Jackson), who flees from an impending marriage, a ho-hum job, and a recent diagnosis in an attempt to live life to the fullest. His misguided road trip on a vintage motorcycle becomes an adventure of self-discovery set against the great Canadian landscape.”

Encounters at the End of the World

“Welcome to Antarctica – like you’ve never experienced it. You’ve seen the extraordinary marine life, the retreating glaciers and, of course, the penguins, but leave it to award-winning, iconoclastic filmmaker Werner Herzog (Grizzly Man, Rescue Dawn) to be the first to explore the South Pole’s most fascinating inhabitants…humans. In this one-of-kind documentary, Herzog turns his camera on a group of remarkable individuals, “professional dreamers” who work, play and struggle to survive in a harsh landscape of mesmerizing, otherworldly beauty – perhaps the last frontier on earth.”

The Way

“A powerful and inspirational story about family, friends, and the challenges we face. Martin Sheen plays Tom, an irascible American doctor who comes to France to collect the remains of his adult son (played by Emilio Estevez), killed in the Pyrenees while walking The Camino de Santiago, also known as The Way of Saint James. Rather than return home, Tom decides to embark on the historical pilgrimage to honor his son’s desire to finish the journey. What Tom doesn’t plan on, is the profound impact the journey will have on him. Inexperienced as a trekker, Tom soon discovers that he will not be alone on this journey.”

The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel

“An award-winning, all-star cast, led by Judi Dench, Bill Nighy, Maggie Smith and Tom Wilkinson, lights up this “buoyant comedy laced with genuine emotion”. When seven cash-strapped seniors decide to “outsource” their retirement to a resort in far-off India, friendship and romance blossom in the most unexpected ways. Smart, life-affirming and genuinely charming, The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel is a “true classic that reminds us that it’s never too late to find love and a fresh beginning at any age”.”

Watch on: Amazon, Apple TV

The Tourist

“Frank (Johnny Depp), a mild-mannered American on vacation in Venice, Italy, is befriended by Elise (Angelina Jolie), a breathtakingly beautiful woman with a mysterious secret. Soon, their playful romantic dalliance turns into a complicated web of dangerous deceit as they are chased by Interpol, the Italian police, and Russian hit men in this suspense-filled, international action thriller.”

The Grand Budapest Hotel

“THE GRAND BUDAPEST HOTEL recounts the adventures of legendary concierge Gustave H. and Zero Moustafa, the lobby boy who becomes his most trusted friend. The story involves the theft of a priceless painting; a raging battle for an enormous family fortune; and a desperate chase on motorcycles, trains, sleds, and skis – all against the back-drop of a suddenly and dramatically changing continent.”

The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert

“Resplendent in flamboyant ballgowns, looking down over the vast red Australian desert: for three showgirls it was the dream of a lifetime, a four week cabaret engagement in Alice Springs. The problem is simply getting there intact, along with their bus Priscilla.”

Phew! There ya go, my list of the 41 best travel movies to fuel your wanderlust! Any ones I missed? Let me know in the comments!

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xx Chels

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41 Best Travel Movies to Inspire Wanderlust

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