Travel the world without ever leaving home. Add these binge-worthy travel movies and documentaries to your queue and transport yourself to a whole new world. This is armchair travel at its most indulgent.
The Best Travel Films and Documentaries
Australia – An English aristocrat joins forces with a cattle-driver to herd 2,000-head of cattle across hundreds of miles of unforgiving land. It takes place between 1939 and 1940 against the stunning backdrop of Western Australia. The scenery is an obvious star in the film by Baz Luhrmann. | Watch it on iTunes.
Out of Africa – Robert Redford and Meryl Streep star in this 1985 film loosely based on Isak Dinesen’s (Karen Blixen’s pseudonym) autobiography, originally published in 1937. The film will make you fall in love with Kenya. For a true “Out of Africa” experience, head to Angama Mara where some of the films most recognizable scenes were shot. | Watch it on Amazon.
Seven Years in Tibet – The true story of Heinrich Harrer (played by Brad Pitt), an Austrian mountain climber. He was attempting to summit Nanga Parbat (in present-day Pakistan) when World War II broke out. Harrer was captured and sent to a POW camp in the Himalayan foothills until his escape to Tibet. Once in Tibet, he befriended the 14th Dalai Lama. | Watch it on Amazon.
Roman Holiday – A classic romance starring Audrey Hepburn and Gregory Peck, set in picturesque Rome. Selected for preservation by the United States Film Registry by the Library of Congress in 1999 as being culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant. | Watch it on Amazon.
Under the Tuscan Sun – Based on the book by Francis Mayes, this is a story of love lost and found again in a place, not a person. It is set in the quintessential Tuscan village of Cortona. | Watch it on Hulu or Amazon.
The Motorcycle Diaries – a Spanish language 2004 biopic about a young Che Guevara and his friend as they travel from Brazil to Peru by motorcycle. | Watch it on Amazon.
Black Panther – We loved Black Panther and the travel inspiration drawn from it so much, we dedicated a whole post to it. Find out where to travel in Africa to see firsthand how the film re-imagined our beloved continent. | Watch it on Amazon or Disney+.
Eat, Pray, Love – Based on Elizabeth Gilbert’s 2006 memoir of her journey around the world on a quest for self-discovery. Italy, India, and Indonesia provide the stunning locations for her adventure to inner peace. | Watch it on Amazon.
Into the Okavango – The Okavango Delta is one of the world’s last wetland wildernesses. National Geographic Documentary Films follow a team of modern-day explorers on a four-month, 1,500-mile journey across Angola, Botswana, and Namibia to save the river system that feeds the Okavango Delta. | Watch on Disney+.
Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown – Now is the perfect time to binge watch Anthony Bourdain’s travel and food series. Travel along as Bourdain explores the culture and cuisine of some lesser-known locales. | Watch it on Hulu and Amazon.
Green Frontier – A beautiful story about a woman returning to her roots in the Amazon. | Watch it on Netflix.
Wild – Reese Witherspoon stars as recently divorced Cheryl Strayed who hiked the Pacific Crest Trail on a journey of reflection and healing. Shot entirely on location in Mojave Desert, Mount Hood, Crater Lake, and the Bridge of the Gods in Cascade Locks. | Watch it on Amazon.
Walking the Nile – A three-part series following British explorer and author Leviton Wood on his journey to be the first person to walk the length of the Nile River from its source to the sea. | Watch it on Amazon.
Lawrence of Arabia – The deserts of southern Jordan set the scene for this masterpiece of wide aspect 70 mm cinematography. During World War I, British army officer T.E. Lawrence helped the region’s Arabs revolt against the Ottoman Turkish empire. Peter O’Toole and Omar Sharif star as the leading men, but the desert is a character in itself. | Watch it on Amazon.
The Best Travel Movies to Watch with the Family
Aladdin – Filmed in Jordan, the live-action version of one of Disney’s most beloved animated features takes inspiration from the tales of One Thousand and One Nights and from many different countries and cultures. You’ll find several Aladdin-inspired adventures throughout the Middle East, North Africa, and Central Asia here. | Watch it on Disney+.
Lion King – Who can resist The Lion King? It’s sure to stir up a desire to take your own African family safari. To see some of the places that inspired the film’s locations, click here. | Watch it on Disney+.
Lord of the Rings – Adventure, friendship, and a journey of self-discovery — J.R.R. Tolkien’s epic fantasy novels made the jump to film in a big way. The trilogy clocks in at 11.2 hours! The sweepingly beautiful landscape of New Zealand will have you packing your bags ASAP. | Watch it on Amazon.
March of the Penguins – Follow Antarctica’s Emperor penguins on their annual trek across the frozen tundra to their traditional breeding ground. The 70 miles from the shore to the inland plain is possibly the simplest part of their journey. After laying the eggs, the males take over protecting it while the females return to the sea for nourishment and to bring back food for the newborn chick. | Watch it on Amazon.