Are travel and relaxation on your mind? The best ever travel movies, part one

The year is 2020. It´s the year of our reality seemingly morphing into one giant, and may I say, extra-long and at times kinda apocalyptic science-fiction movie. Or a thriller. Or a drama. Anyways, what could be more appropriate than balancing out one movie, especially one as intense and adrenaline-inducing as the one we have been witnessing over the last months, with another? A lighter, more joyous and life-affirming one, of course!:)

Which inner movie is playing on your mind?

Let me backtrack a bit, before continuing along the afore-mentioned train of thought. The mind is a terrible master, but a wonderful servant, as leadership expert and writer Robin S. Sharma says – a statement that never seemed to ring more true than now. Rarely are things as bad as the unmitigated mind wants us to believe, rarely is the reality of the world as one-sided as it is being portrayed by the mass media.

The fact cannot be denied that suffering is part of life, of course, but a mind left to its own devices usually adds insult to injury with its negative shenanigans.

Picture taken in Augusta, Western Australia a while ago

So questioning our beliefs and thoughts on a regular or daily basis might just be what the inner doctor ordered, to arrive at the calm which lies at the center of every collective and individual storm. This has validity in general in my perception but is especially important in times of such imbalance within the collective consciousness as has been manifesting over the last months.

To assist you in accessing your inner place of calm, I am currently working on creating a fabulous online relax package consisting of an e-book, a guided meditation, a Yoga-and-movement-video, and… a secret surprise bonus!

I am a trained Yoga teacher with 20 years of my own Yoga practice and many further Healing Arts studies under my belt, and I am more than happy to share some of my best-kept secrets with you, if this resonates with you, dear reader. If you do feel called to do so, please register your interest here.

Practicing Dancer´s pose in Coral Bay, Western Australia

Put a smile on your dial: Keep exploring life´s beauty

Fortunately, life is not all inner and outer work, though, and travel has always been an amazing way to just have some good ol fun, expand one´s horizons and broaden one´s perspectives. Travel can happen outwardly, but fortunately for us, it can happen inwardly as well. Inward ways of exploring which you might love or grow to love can include listening to world music, reading inspiring books about foreign cultures, cooking yummy recipes from other cultures, or watching fantastic travel movies!

Do you love movies as much as I do? I must admit that I am an absolute movie-buff who even studied cinema at university as part of my Masters in Cultural Studies and communication. So, without further ado, let me introduce you to my top 10 travel movie choices. Find the first three recommendations in this post, accompanied by some pictures of my previous travels/ stays at the respective movie location- countries or cities.

Eat, Pray, Love – Italy, India, Indonesia/ Bali

You might have heard of this one before, lol. This 2010 movie based on Elizabeth Gilbert´s adventurous experiences while traveling around the world to find herself after a tricky divorce was a massive box-office-hit. It entices its viewers with an easily digestible storyline, gorgeous cinematography which captures images from Rome/ Italy, Liz/ Elizabeth´s first station, India, as well as Bali and brings them straight to your armchair/ sofa/bed/ or wherever else you love to hang out these days. It has it all: Hunky and talented actors and beautiful and equally gifted actresses (I mean, Julia Roberts!! James Franco!! Javier Bardem!! Enough said), a focus on delicious food, as well as adventure, romance, and a dash of humor.

Do enjoy that ice-cream while it lasts, Julia! Eat Pray Love with gorgeous Julia Roberts. Copyrights by Plan B Entertainment

It might not be a movie a la Citizen Kane, but it surely offers a marvelous respite and a way to travel to awe-inspiring locations around the world from the comfort and safety (a much-beloved word nowadays) of your home. I leave you with some photos of my own one-month-stay in Italy/Rome from 2007. To travel a bit deeper and read about my own experiences while living in Bali, just embark here. Italy and Bali are up to this day two of my favorite ever travel destinations which we hopefully will be able to enjoy again very soon. Until then, let’s make the most of our virtual travel time together!

The hundred-foot-journey – France

Welcome to la Belle France… enchanting, freedom-loving (usually anyways) country of exquisite cuisine, of free-spirited thinkers and artists, and superb scenery as well as alluring cities and quaint little country towns. There are countless beautiful movies set in this spectacular country, but one of my all-time- favorites must be “The Hundred-Foot-Journey”-

A fabulous cinematic feast of food, friends, and foes with fantastic fabulous Helen Mirren. Image Copyright: Dreamworks Pictures

It tells the tale of a lovable Indian family that moves to a sweet yet conservative country-town in France and sets up a restaurant opposite a well-established French haute cuisine establishment. Et alors, and then? Ah bon, there is lots of fire happening! Metaphorically, and literally speaking- the fires of rivalry, of passionate love, and exquisite culinary creations create an elaborate dance of joy and entertainment, brought to life by marvelous actors including goddess Dame Helen Mirren and directed by Lasse Hallström. Mon dieu, c´est magnifique!

The magic of a Southern French sunset
Provencal town at night
The charms of Southern France have been an inspiration to countless artists and bon-vivants
Provencal hotel
Exploring Les-Beaux-de Provence
Communing with nature
Gorgeous cypresses, a quintessential part of the Provencal landscape
Admiring the rugged hills of the Alpilles in Southern France

Soul kitchen – Germany

Ah, Soul kitchen. I mean, what a title! It points to the key ingredients of this irresistibly fun and kinda unconventional, very non-mainstream movie by iconic German-Turkish director Fatih Akin. The plot centers around lively protagonist Zinos, a German of Greek descent who owns Soul Kitchen, a shabby, run-down restaurant providing working-class food in the Hamburg area.

Soul kitchen by Fatik Akin, with the byline “Life is what happens while you are busy making other plans” (John Lennon). Image Copyright: Corazon International

Zinos is out of money due to, among other things, a punk-rock-band that occasionally uses the restaurant as practice space, but never remembers to pay rent, and old sailor Sokrates, who kinda lives on his boat at the warehouse-space owned by Zinos for free. Everything changes, though, when Zinos decides to follow the girl he loves to Shanghai and leaves his beloved diner to his criminally inclined brother Ilias (famous German actor Moritz Bleibtreu) …

As a Hamburg Native, I must admit I absolutely love this gem of a movie. It showcases many neighborhoods and locations that I know “wie aus meiner Westentasche“/ like the back of my hand, plus it simply bursts with creativity, fun, and cool music. Viel Spass beim Anschauen, Leute – Have fun watching it, peeps! Also: You can listen to the movie´s soundtrack here.

Back to you, dear reader: What is your favorite ever travel-movie? And where would you travel now, if a fairy godmother suddenly landed on your windowsill and granted you a hassle-free trip somewhere in this beautiful world? As always, I would love to hear from you!

Categories: Posts in English, Reiselust- Hungry for travel, Reisen | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 34 Comments

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34 thoughts on “Are travel and relaxation on your mind? The best ever travel movies, part one

  1. Thanks for the delicious tour and tips Maria! It’s so nice to see your smiling face and all the wonderful places you’ve played. I love the yoga pose too. I loved Eat, Pray, Love too but the most inspiring “movies” for me are the Wild Kingdom TV series that I watched as a kid. They introduced me to the wonderful world of Africa and its majestic animals and landscapes. I still dream of going on a safari!

    You definitely helped me put a smile on my dial this morning! Hugs and smiles…😍

    Liked by 3 people

    • Thank you Brad for your wonderful comment and feedback! So glad you enjoyed the tour and Yoga poses. I should better not tell you how often I ve watched Eat, Pray, Love haha. 😛 Thanks so much for sharing your media suggestions!! Gonna check the Wild Kingdm TV series out! OMG yes Africa must be an incredible place to visit. Yes to a safari!!! I want to do one, too:) Lets go, hey? 😉 Btw also LOVE Sir David Attenboroughs documentaries, have you heard of him? What a legend, just turned 94 and still as inspirational as ever. Many hugs and smiles dear Brad 🙂 ❤️

      Liked by 4 people

  2. What a great idea for a post, and a great post! When I read the title, Eat, Pray, Love, was the first movie that came to my mind. I also enjoy, Under the Tuscan Sun. Gotta keep those “negative shenanigans,” away! I love that expression. 🙂

    Liked by 3 people

  3. I’m positively enchanted from start to finish. A breath of fresh air, Merci Beaucoup! I love movies but rarely get the chance to watch them as I’d like to. These three are definitely on my list of to see now! Of course no theatre going at the moment but when I am able to, I take a favorite soft blanket and sit right in the middle of the front row, feet tucked up under me. Nothing between me and the glorious colors and feelings of the movie. At home it’s quite easy to do that!! So happy to see a new offering from you Maria Elena, do take good care. 😊❤️🎶

    Liked by 3 people

    • Dear Suzanne, thank you so much for your visit, read, and wonderfully heartwarming feedback! 🙂 Love your theatre experience sharing, that sounds just too cozy! So happy you enjoyed this post dear friend. You have been in my thoughts, I hope you are well! In challenging times like these its even more important to look in caring ways after ourselves right…Big hug and much love ❤️🎶

      Liked by 3 people

      • Always my pleasure 🌼! Doing well and fine here. You have been in my thoughts as well, hoping life is gentle for you. You’re so right, we must care for ourselves so that we can reach out to others when need be… hugs and love 🎶❤️🥰

        Liked by 3 people

      • That´s really good to hear dear Suzanne. Just read your sweet email also, thank you very much! Will reply soon – I will just add your email to my list for those interested in the upcoming relaxation package offering:) Thanks for your interest and kindness, and agree to all you are stating in your comment 🙂 Big hugs and much love 🎶❤️🥰

        Liked by 2 people

      • Thank you! Do take care, hugs and love 🥰❤️🎶

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Love love LOVE this post. Where to start? Well firstly, the inner movie of our mind. Yes, there’s been a world of fear and negativity portrayed in the mainstream media over the past few months but I’ve deliberately chosen not to focus on it. Instead I’ve embarked on a Mindful in May program and surrounded myself with like minded people. And daily walks in nature. I love all that you said about having a calm in our inner storm. We can all access that. If we choose to.
    Secondly, the package you’re creating sounds fabulous. Go girl! I’ve signed up for it and can’t wait to find out more. 😍🙏
    And thirdly, your movies! We’re clearly aligned because I’ve been thinking of writing a post on the very same thing. Travel lusting movies to inspire travel. How incredible is that! Love how aligned we seem to be, on opposite sides of the world.
    A beautiful uplifting post that transported me. Loved all your photos too and seeing your smiling face.
    Yes, to creating our own joyous movie in our mind. And seeing it translate to reality. Much love and hugs from me to you my beautiful friend.. xxx 💕😍

    Liked by 2 people

    • Cara amica, thank you so moltisimo for your beautiful, in-depth lines and feedback! Much treasured, its always wonderful to have you here and hear from you my lovely. So refreshing! You know what – we really are very aligned. Imagine this: I applied for a position with Mindful in May in 2015 while I was still living in Australia! Incredible hey? Love your conscious focus on uplifting company and information. It´s crucial, I find, especially nowadays! Aww so awesome that you have signed up for the relax package! Yay! Thanks for always being so supportive my friend 💕😍💕😍 Thanks again for all the beauty you share! Much love and big hugs bellisima xoxox

      Liked by 2 people

      • Yes, we certainly are aligned cara Maria. How amazing that you applied for a job with M.I.M back in 2015. Life’s amazing and pretty unpredictable isn’t it. Who would have thought, fast forward five years, we’d be living in this strange world. Stay well and positive my dear friend. It’s not always easy but it’s a conscious choice we can all make. And it’s far better than the fear alternative the major media channels would have us tap into. Big hugs and love sent to you from across the ocean. And thanks again for a gorgeously uplifting post. 🥰💕 xx

        Liked by 2 people

      • Yes my dear, life is like a box of chocolates…some taste yummy and some taste rather yuck 😛 I agree with you in that I refuse to nibble on any chocolates given out so generously by the mass media… you are right, its not always easy, but a good challenge and I feel there are many many lessons to be learned in these times… Big big hugs my dear amica, and thank YOU for being so supportive and wonderful! 🥰💕 Tanti baci

        Liked by 2 people

  5. Oh, by the way, I forgot to mention one of my favourite travel movies (I have many) is The Secret Life of Walter Mitty. So much fun and such a feel good movie. Hugs again dear friend xxxxx 🥰💕💛

    Liked by 2 people

    • Oh yesss!! That is an awesome travel movie indeed! Thanks for sharing it with us:) Would love to see a post on travel movies written by you, also! Always on the lookout for more great travel movies to watch. Much amore!! xoxo

      Liked by 1 person

  6. During this time of idle isolation,
    ‘La Grande Bouffe’ might be the movie to watch? 🍖🍰🍝🥘 🥮🍕
    Or perhaps not? 😎

    Liked by 2 people

    • LOL, Mister Redpath, just checked the movie´s summary 😂
      “La Grande Boeuffe” might just do the trick!
      Let the feeding-fiesta begin 😛 Gracias por tu comentario y sugerencia,
      amigo! Hope everything is well with ya in my beloved Australia 🐨🦘🌏


  7. Oh,you have so much sweet travel’s memories.all photos are amazing.but specially the Roman Ruins.i have never see those,but when i see those pictures,i feel-those are calling me.why?i don’t know.may be i had take the birth there before many centuries😁i love those so much.hey ,dear gypsy soul!! Before some days,you told about an INDIAN movie which you saw.what is the name of that movie.most wonderful post,Querida amiga.Much love and big hugs💝💝💝💝💕💕💕💕💕💖

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thank you so much, querida amiga! So happy to hear you enjoyed the article and photos. Ah yes, the movie I mentioned is called “The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel, it´s an American movie that takes place in India, quite enjoyable 🙂 Much love and big hugs meri jaan 💕💕💖💕💕💖


      • Oh.i never heard about that movie.i will try for your article and your feeling of soul of love.😊much love and big hugs.🤗🤗🤗😘😘😘💕💕💕💕💕💕💖💝

        Liked by 2 people

      • Yes meri jaan, I recommend it, its a worthwhile movie! Bahut bahut dhanywaad for your beautiful words of kindness. much love 😘💕💕💕


      • Wow.i will try to see.meri dost💕💕💝💕💕💕💖

        Liked by 1 person

  8. Fab post, dear Gypsy!
    Yes, we need some other types of travelling, seeing as Covid has us imprisoned.
    This post is a great idea, and although I have not seen any of the movies, I will now look for them.
    However, I did work with Helen Mirren on a movie: The Passion of Ayn Rand. She is a gem, and I love all of her work.
    Stay safe! xoxo

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thanks so much, dear Resa artista fabulosa!
      I love traveling in all kinds of ways, and some of them include indulging in your fantastic Canadian Street Art shots, and your inspiring Art Gown delights!!:) Espero que te vayan a gustar las peliculas! Aaaah! I cannot believe you worked with Helen Mirren, adore her!! You are right, her work is outstanding. OMG one day I would love to have a drink/tea/gree juice with you in a hip Canadian cafe, and hear all about this!!! Stay well and inspired my lovely💖💖💖

      Liked by 1 person

  9. Dear Maria,
    So good to travel this way and via your eyes and words.
    I loved The Exotic Marigold Hotel movies. My travel to the east. Im certain youfd love it too. 🤗

    Liked by 2 people

    • Dear Kavitha, thanks so much for your beautiful words, I am so happy that you enjoyed this excursion to the world of travel movies. Ahh yes, love The Exotic Marigold movies! It might even appear in my next post:) Thanks Kavitha! Warm hugs to you in South Africa 💓


  10. Pingback: Escape with me: The best ever travel movies, part 2 | A gypsy at heart

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