10 Wanderlust Movies

Bucket list. Dream destination. Travel playlist. Serendipity. Nothing can set your soul on fire with wanderlust than a round-up of big-screen classics that have or will inspire you to put your travel goals into action:
Mamma Mia (2008)
Location: Greece
The toe-tapping songs and jaw-dropping scenes in the musical film Mama Mia marry the two things every traveling music lover can’t resist. The story starts with bride-to-be Sophie who dreams of having her father beside to walk her to the altar. She has never met him and has no idea on who he is, so she rummages through her mom’s old diary for answers. Finding three ex-lovers who might be the father figure she is seeking, she invites them to her wedding. Mama Mia is a story of family, love, and friendship set in a rustic resort in one of the most picturesque isles of Greece in the Aegean Sea, Kalokairi (originally named Skopelos). Once you see the beautiful waters and fantastic architecture, you can’t help but want to ‘take a chance on’ these sun-kissed isles.
The Bucket List (2007)
Location(s): France, India, Tanzania, China, Nepal
Carter Chamber, a mechanic and amateur historian, and Edward Cole, a wealthy health care-tycoon, are two very different men who, after being diagnosed with terminal cancer, become an odd pair of friends after sharing a hospital room. Despite their condition, the two men decide to write their bucket list and (with the help of Edward’s vast wealth) live it out as a last hurrah. Nothing says “life is short; enjoy it to the fullest” than two terminally ill men escaping from their ward to experience the beauty of life. The Bucket List is a story of adventure, comedy, and drama as the two men learn to live life while finding friendship and amazing experiences along the way. You’ll definitely love all the zany antics they get themselves into and maybe get some ideas on what to do before you get too old to try them yourself!
The Grand Budapest Hotel (2014)
Location(s): Germany, Hungary
This whimsical, big-screen adventure will make you crave your own fancy hotel staycation out there in the vast European continent. Not only does this film portray a one-of-a-kind service of a once-lavish hotel, The Grand Budapest Hotel also takes its viewers time traveling through framed narratives between the first and second World Wars. It depicts the life of a celebrated concierge, Gustave H, and his friend and apprentice, a trusted bellboy named Zero Moustafa, and their recovery of a Renaissance masterpiece which holds a family fortune. The picturesque aesthetic of German decor and locations will inspire you to finally check out and check in at a European hotel to experience the same atmosphere of adventure and curiosity.
The Secret Life of Walter Mitty (2013)
Location(s): Iceland, Greenland, The Himalayas
The mundane manager of the negative assets at Life magazine, Walter Mitty often daydreams to put some spice into his office-home routine and escaping into make-believe adventures. With their print magazine suddenly upgrading to a digital format, Mitty and his co-workers are all in danger of being laid off in a company downsizing. Hoping to keep his job at all costs, he follows the path of photojournalist Sean O’Connell after an important photo negative goes missing. Traversing the majestic landscape of ice and fire in Iceland to the stunning and challenging Himalayan mountains, Mitty finds himself in a few hilarious situations in some of the most beautiful places. If they say that the best adventures are mostly unplanned, this reel of comedy, drama, and adventure had just set the bar high for surprise journeys!
Eat Pray Love (2010)
Location(s): Italy, India, Indonesia
Finding oneself could mean getting a taste of your destination, discovering the power of prayer, and achieving the balance of peace and love in life. Looking back at everything she has in her life, a husband, a career, and a house, Elizabeth Gilbert considers herself to be a prime example of a successful woman. But even with all her achievements, she can’t understand why she feels so lost and empty. After just getting out of her marriage while standing at a crossroads, she decides to step out of her comfort zone and sets on a journey of self-discovery. Eat Pray Love depicts the culinary riches of Italy, the deep religious devotion of India, and the beauty and warmth of Indonesia.
Up (2009)
Locations(s): US, South America
With the advanced digital technology, UP features some of the sights and sounds of South America’ throughout magical and charming journeys of the irritable Carl and spunky scout stowaway, Russell. After the home he built with his late wife is threatened by nearby construction, he turns it into a homemade dirigible and heads to the never-before-seen Paradise Falls to complete an unfulfilled dream of hers. The slick movements, colorful visuals, and quirky characters are sure to ignite a passion for your own enchanting journey. More than just a digital cartoon, this animated Pixar film inspires the traveler in everyone to go out and explore the world, whether young or old - because hey, the adventure is out there!
The Hobbit (2012, 2013, 2014)
Location(s): New Zealand
It’s more than just a fantasy adventure when the wizard Gandalf convinces Bilbo Baggins to join a group of dwarves and help reclaim their dwarven kingdom. The quest isa journey of discovery across New Zealand and its spectacular landscapes which brought Middle-earth to life for the entire film series. The sets, some of which were created for the film, are situated in the mountains, while other filming locations are the actual New Zealand’s glorious scenic backdrops of lakes, fields, national parks, and forests. What’s even better than loving a fantasy film? Visiting the real-life locations and getting your geek on!
Into The Wild (2007)
Location(s): USA
Fresh out of college, 19-year old Christopher McCandless abandons his privileged life and bravely sets out alone. Without many possession save his backpack, he embarks on a journey across the US, specifically hitchhiking in the wilderness of Alaska, while encountering a multitude of people. More than just a story of life, discovery, and freedom, Into the Wild is sure to awaken the backpacker in you to discover what other realities exist, to embrace the freedom you enjoy now, and to seek happiness while traversing some of America’s the most breathtaking landscapes.
Mr. & Mrs. Cruz (2018)
Location(s): Philippines
The story of two travelers, Raffy and Gela who both happen to share the last names - Cruz, travel to Palawan as therapy for each of their recent heartbreaks. The soul-searching these two strangers embark on turns into a shared adventure where they get to know each other while trying to help the other get over their broken-heartedness. Though Mr. & Mrs. Cruz may initially appear like the serendipitous two heartbroken persons meeting in paradise with an ending like the classic Filipino fairytale we know, the story takes on an entirely different path amidst the wonders of one of the world’s best islands - Palawan.
Lost in Translation (2003)
Location(s): Japan
Set in the vibrant Shibuya and Shinjuku, is a drama film that stars two Americans - an actor, Bob Harris who is filming a commercial ad and a young neglected newlywed Charlotte accompanying her celebrity-photographer husband. Both share a melancholy and are searching for the meaning of life. While each of them have a different purpose for staying at a luxurious hotel in the metro, a few chance encounters and meetings at the hotel bar eventually lead to them sharing a connection. The movie is a portrayal of loneliness despite having almost everything while highlighting the heart of Tokyo, one of the world’s most beautiful cities.