20 Travel Movies to Ignite Your Wanderlust


If you’re anything like me, the idea of travelling is absolutely thrilling. Whether you are jetting off to an exotic island or immersing yourself in snow for the first time, or even driving to a local destination; if you are trying street food in the floating markets of Thailand, or crunching into fresh croissants along a terrace in a bustling French sidewalk café, the world is filled with amazing experiences for us to try.

But, when you are hunkering down in your home and not able to get there, the next best thing you can do to get your travel juices flowing is to watch a great travel movie.

Here is a list of our Top 20 travel movies of all time to really get that wanderlust going.

In no particular order:

Eat. Pray. Love.
Julia Roberts portrays Elizabeth Gilbert who is recently divorced and gives up everything she knows in a journey of self-discovery. We travel with her as she leaves her home and in the USA, and tastes Italy, practices praying in India and learns about love in Indonesia.

The Beach

Leonardo DiCaprio portrays Richard who travels to Thailand where, as a backpacker, he meets up with fellow travellers who tell him about a secret pristine beach and lagoon which is hidden from the masses. He ends up with a secret map to this beach and encourages the couple to travel with him. On arrival, his life becomes entangled with that of a small secret community who live by many social evils that Richard was trying to get away from. In addition, there is an army of natives who grow marijuana in the nearby hills and they are unhappy that this community is living there.


The Terminal
Have you ever wondered what it would be like if you had to live at the airport? The Terminal is a comedy-drama where Tom Hanks’ character, Viktor Navorski, gets stranded at an airport when a war breaks out in his country. He is forced by the officials to stay at the airport until his original identity can be confirmed.

Cast Away
In Cast Away, we see Tom Hanks stranded yet again, but this time he is alone on an island. However, this is not one of the gorgeous tropical islands that some of us dream of travelling to. This island is uninhabited and he is completely alone. Lucky to be alive after his plane crashes into the ocean, the only company that he has is an island-mate whom he creates from a basketball that he finds in the packages that he was transporting.  This is an excellent tale of one man’s survival, and how one incident changed the path of his life.

tom hanks in cast away

Murder Mystery
Currently on Netflix, Jennifer Aniston and Adam Sandler team up again in this comedy murder mystery where they have travelled to Europe to try and salvage what is left of their marriage, and they end up getting framed for a billionaire’s murder whilst on board his luxury yacht.  Ah, the life on a luxury yacht.

Mama Mia
Island hopping around the islands of Greece is a dream holiday is desired by many people. The hit songs from Abba have been excellently transformed into not only one but two romantic musical comedies which shows the lighter side of taking risks and living life to the full.

In this amazing rom-com, Adam Sandler and Drew Barrymore head up their own single-parent families and are fortunate enough to secure a holiday to South Africa. Unbeknownst to each other, they meet up at Sun City where they realise they are booked on to the same holiday package. This romantic comedy is a fun and insightful look at a blended family and the adaptions people need to make when coming together with others.

The Secret Life of Walter Mitty
Walter Mitty is an introverted man with a dull life as a negative assets manager at Life Magazine and suffers from PTSD. He often finds himself in vivid daydreams where he is living an exciting life, something he has created to escape the monotony of his own existence. He ends up travelling on the quest of his life in search of Sean O’Connell, a legendary photojournalist whom he has never met.

The secret life of walter mitty

Couple’s Retreat
One couple decides to embark on couple’s therapy which is hosted on a gorgeous tropical island. Three of their couple friends decide to go with them, believing they are going on holiday but when they arrive they find out that therapy is mandatory. As they work on their relationships, common problems that many face are brought to the surface.

The Bucket List
Two men diagnosed with terminal illnesses are advised they only have six months left to live and decide to make a bucket list of the things that they want to experience and places that they want to travel to before they ‘kick the bucket.’  They fly over the North Pole, eat in France, visit Egypt, go on safari in Tanzania and so many more experiences that most of us dream of.

Mr Bean’s Holiday
If you are looking for something light-hearted, Mr Bean’s Holiday could be just the thing. He wins a lucky draw competition to France, and unknowingly separates a father and his son. He decides to help reunite this young boy with his father and is accompanied in his travels around France with a beautiful French actress.

Robin Williams realizes that his children are rebellious and uncommunicative and decides to do something about it. As Bob Munro, this dad rents an RV to take his family on vacation so they can reconnect, and along the way they endure some hilarious adventures along the way to the Colorado Rockies.

robin williams

The Last Holiday
Gloria is a humble shop assistant and receives news that she only has a few weeks left to live. Deciding to embrace the time she has left, she quits her job, sells her possessions and travels off to a luxury resort in Europe that she has always dreamed of visiting.

The Holiday
In this ‘chick-flick’, two ladies from different continents decide to swap houses for a much-needed holiday. English Iris arrives at a sumptuous Hollywood mansion, while American Amanda nestles down into a quaint picturesque English village. And of course, romance isn’t far behind them.

National Lampoons Vacation
Clark Griswold decides to take his family on a road trip vacation from Chicago to LA as he wants them to experience Wally World. Clark is an extremely optimist and cheerful husband and father, even during the constant mishaps that happen along the way. Really good for a laugh.

Also known as Flying High! This spoof comedy movie rips off some of the disaster movies that were released in the 70’s. A pilot with a drinking problem needs to land a commercial plane filled with passengers after the passengers and crew are incapacitated due to food poisoning.

Under the Tuscan Sun
Set in Tuscany, Italy, the location of this movie is incredible. It ignites that wanderlust for those who have ever dreamed about renting a villa in Tuscany enabling you to easily explore the cobbled streets, chat with locals and end your day off sipping Chianti while indulging in fresh hand-made pasta.

under the tuscan sun

The God’s must be Crazy
This South African comedy follows the tale of an African tribe of bushmen whose lives are turned upside down after a glass Coca-Cola bottle falls from the sky and they believe it to be a utensil of the gods.  Fighting over this new utensil naturally ensues and the tribal leader decides he must return this to the gods to reinstall peace in his tribe. His quest becomes an adventure as he crosses paths with a scientist and a guerilla army and is even arrested along the way.

Crocodile Dundee
Take an Aussie and put him in the heart of New York and what do you have? Crocodile Dundee!  In this comedy, Paul Hogan is a unique crocodile poacher who really knew his way around the outback, however when he saves an American journalist from a crocodile attack and she takes him back to New York City, he is completely out of his depth.

Around the World in 80 Days
This adventurous movie is light-hearted and fun.  As British Phileas Fogg hires Chinese thief Jackie Chan as his assistant, their goal is to circumnavigate the world in 80 days in order to win a bet. Their challenge begins in London, England and passes through various cities travelling in an easterly direction and ending in San Francisco.


around the world in 80 days

That is our list of travel movies however we know there are many more. Comment below and let us know which is your favorite travel movie.

  1. Eugene Strydom says:

    No travel movie list would be complete without the 2010 production called “The Way” starring Martin Sheen and Emilio Estevez.

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