With Cannes Film Festival kicking off this week and with it, the inevitable urge to rush off to the South of France (private yacht mandatory), we started thinking about the films that have given us all-consuming wanderlust, enough to pack our bags post-haste and make for the nearest airport. There are plenty to choose from, especially if you’re willing to set street-cred aside and admit to just how many cheesy films you’ve endured and enjoyed – hello Mamma Mia, set in lovely Greece and the Italian countryside stealing the limelight in Under the Tuscan Sun.
Here are the five that made the cut.
Probably the first film to come to mind for a lot of people, The Beach was one of the few movies that is remembered as much for its setting as for the storyline or acting. The cinematography set Thailand firmly on the bucket list for its depiction of the stunning Thai beaches of Krabi, Phuket and Ko Phi Phi.
Recreate The Beach for yourself on a Bangkok-and-beach luxury holiday.
The Motorcycle Diaries
A showcase for unspoilt South America, The Motorcycle Diaries traces an enviable path through Argentina, Chile, Bolivia and Peru in the story of Che Guevara’s 8,000km, four-month-long journey, starting out from Buenos Aires. It sounds like an epic way to spend a summer to us and has earned itself a place on our ever-expanding to-do list.
Channel Che with your own trip through the Mendoza winelands.
Perhaps one of our all-time favourites, Paris takes a starring role in feel-good French flick Amélie, making us yearn for our own little Parisian apartment, to wander the streets of Montmartre, linger over coffees and liqueurs in cafés and la belle vie that goes hand in hand with the City of Lights.
Say oui to Paris with your own sojourn to France’s capital.
We can’t resist a good wildlife movie and Born Free is the original tug-at-the-heartstrings animal film, with the beautiful wilderness of Kenya considerably adding to its appeal. Elsa the lioness’ legacy lives on in the elegant Elsa’s Kopje lodges in Meru National Park, where Born Free was filmed.
See Kenya’s wild side on an amazing safari trip.
Anything with Audrey Hepburn and Gregory Peck usually has us willing the invention of time travel to the style of the sixties but at least Roman Holiday gives us the more realistic option of retracing their steps in fabulous Rome. Perch on the Spanish Steps with a gelato á la Audrey and recreate Mr. Peck’s arm-disappearing trick in the Mouth of Truth at the Santa Maria Church in the Piazza Bocca della Verita.
Re-enact Roman Holiday with your own trip to Italy’s most stylish cities.