Travel movies to inspire wanderlust during self-isolation

New Shades of Hippy - Anneka Nicholls - travel blog and green living - travel movies to watch in self-isolation

The world on lockdown is a terrifying and unfamiliar place. Most of us have been forced to work from home or self-isolate, meanwhile life as we know it continues to turn upside down. As we all get used to this new reality, we need to take our minds off the doom and gloom and be inspired to look forward. The coronavirus pandemic may have put a stop to our travel plans but it can’t kill our wanderlust. So if you’re a travel lover, grab a cuppa and prepare to virtually escape from your sofa. Here’s 7 travel movies to inspire your adventurous spirit during COVID-19 self-isolation and social distancing.

#1. The Secret Life of Walter Mitty

An inspiring story of recklessness, adventure and making the most of life. Walter is a humble, introverted guy living a mundane life until the threat of losing his job forces him to go on an amazing journey. What I love about his character is that he uses his daydreams to escape from the dull, harsh realities of everyday life. This movie sends a powerful message that life is about what you make it AKA taking back control and pushing yourself out of your comfort zone.

#2. Wild

A truly uplifting movie about determination, self-discovery and staying strong. Released just six years ago, this true story follows Cheryl Strayed, a distraught young woman who decides to walk 1,000 miles along the Pacific Crest Trail. It’s not just about a woman who goes hiking, it’s so much more than that. It’s a story of loss, of solo female travel, of stripping back life and being completely vulnerable to nature. In the face of huge mental and physical challenges, it’s a reminder that the human spirit can withstand (and recover from) some really tough shit. Want to know more? Read my review of Wild here.

#3. Eat Pray Love

Author Elizabeth Gilbert’s memoir of her life-changing trip around the world. Despite having a loving husband, successful career and a beautiful home, Liz Gilbert (played by Julia Roberts) reaches a crossroads and decides to take her life in a new direction. Following her divorce, she leaves everything behind and travels through Italy, India and Bali on a journey of self-discovery and healing. It’s an emotional story that connects travel, fullfilment and love in such a powerful way. Definitely one for the fellow wanderlust daydreamers out there.

#4. The Beach

A classic from 2000! Richard (Leonardo DiCaprio) is an American backpacker travelling through Asia with his friends when, in Bangkok, he is given a map leading to a mysterious, uninhabited paradise in Thailand. Driven by the lure of this legendary place, the trio make the dangerous journey to locate it, only to be met by a community of fellow backpackers already living there. As they all settle in, their life in paradise begins to unravel and secrets are exposed. If you’ve never been to Thailand before, you’ll certainly want to visit after watching this movie (once the pandemic is over, of course!)

#5. The Bucket List

Self-isolation could be the perfect opportunity to write your bucket list and this light-hearted comedy is a great one to get you started. The storyline follows two terminally-ill patients (Morgan Freeman and Jack Nicholson) who decide to leave hospital and use their remaining days to live their bucket list dreams. It’s got laughter, friendship, adventure and an uplifting message about getting the most out of life (not to mention two legendary actors.) A recommended pick-me-up!

#6. Into the Wild

Into the Wild tells the true story of Christopher McCandless, a young graduate who gives up everything in his privileged life to hitchhike across America in search of adventure and meaning. It’s a poetic portrayal of what it means to be truly wanderlust and in awe of nature. Although it touches on a more heavy subject, Into the Wild is inspiring for so many reasons. There’s no doubt it will have you questioning society as we know it.

“The very basic core of a man’s living spirit is his passion for adventure.” – Christopher McCandless


New Zealand: The Bucket List for Nature Lovers

Eye to Eye with Elephants in Thailand

7 Solo Travel Myths And Why I’m Glad I Did It Anyway


New Shades of Hippy Pinterest - Anneka Nicholls - travel blog and green living - Travel movie to inspire wanderlust during self-isolation


  1. 6 April 2020 / 2:51 pm

    So many fantastic movies here, I have actually seen them all! My all time favourite is Eat Pray Love and Wild is a close second. I always feel so uplifted and inspired after I watch these films. Thanks for sharing your favourites, all these are such wonderful movies to escape with! ❤ xx

    Bexa |

    • 6 April 2020 / 3:01 pm

      Thank you! They’re all so good, it’s actually hard to choose which is my favourite. These movies help me to feel better when I’m feeling at my lowest so I hope it can help others too. ❤️

    • 10 April 2020 / 5:05 pm

      Thank you! I’m definitely doing the same – in fact I watched Eat Pray Love last night. 😍 It’s great that to hear that other people love these movies just as much as I do.

  2. 11 April 2020 / 1:05 pm

    Oooooh some good picks on this list! Probably the first movie that inspired me to travel would be EuroTrip, as ridiculous as it is, there is a decent amount of Europe in it!

    • 12 April 2020 / 1:14 pm

      Thanks! EuroTrip is hilarious and you’re totally right, it’s a great one for Europe travel inspiration! I’ll have to dig it out and rewatch it!

      • 15 April 2020 / 1:58 am

        I recently discovered my wife hasn’t seen it before. I’m at a loss as to how this has happened!!

Leave a Reply