Just Like the Movies: 7 Locations Every Film Fan Should Visit


Have you ever watched a movie and wondered where it was shot? Or drove past an area that reminds you of a movie set? We’ve got some of the answers to your questions with seven iconic movie locations to plan to see on your next trip!

1. Glen Etive – Highlands of Scotland (Skyfall)

The name is Etive… Glen Etive. The beautiful Scottish Highlands are responsible for the backdrops of several scenes in the 23rd installment in the James Bond series, Skyfall. Here you can live out your James Bond dreams and road trip down the same path as 007. You may recognize the Glen in other popular movies like Harry Potter and Braveheart. It’s a popular choice because of its breathtaking scenery that’s made up of rocky mountains, a flowing white water river and all sorts of wildlife. We recommend exploring the rest of Scotland too, especially if you’re a James Bond fan—you can visit many other locations used in the classic Bond films, plus sample Bond’s favorite whisky at the Macallan Distillery.

Bond
L: (Skyfall, 2012) R: (‘Scotland Highland Skyfall’- tangentbeta on Pixabay CC0)

 

2. Mirabell Palace and Gardens – Salzburg, Austria (The Sound of Music)

The hills are alive right in the heart of Salzburg where Mirabell Gardens can be found and was once the playground of Maria and the Von Trapp family. Surrounding the Mirabell Palace, one of the oldest and most breathtaking wedding venues in the world, the garden beholds a stunning fountain with a sculpture of Pegasus, one of the oldest hedge theaters north of the Alps and smaller ornamental flower beds throughout the fields. You can find other musical-themed attractions around the city including Mozart’s birthplace and the Salzburg Festival with live music and dance performances!

sound of music
L: (Sound of Music, 1965) R: (‘Film Shot Featuring Julie Andrews & the Children’ – bill&ben on Waymark)

 

3. Philadelphia Museum of Art – Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (Rocky)

Did you know the steps to the East Entrance of the museum have been declared the second most famous movie filming location in the world? Thanks to the classic film Rocky, people from all around the world make the iconic run up the steps, which represents perseverance and determination. And once you reach the top, you can enjoy a beautiful view of the Benjamin Franklin Parkway and city skyline.

Rocky1
L: (Rocky, 1976) R: (‘Philadelphia Museum of Art’ – Rgordon6 on Wikimedia Commons)

 

4. Casa Loma – Toronto, Canada (X-Men)

Here in good ol’ Canada beholds the classroom for Professor Xavier’s School for Gifted Youngsters in the 2000 X-Men installment. Although the exterior shots of the school were filmed in Westchester, NY, the interior footage presents the widely-recognized main floor conservatory windows and hallways. Toronto’s majestic castle is worth a visit, if not to see where X-Men were taught, then to check out the stunning garden, participate in an escape room or catch a concert.

Casa
L: (X-Men, 2000) R: (‘Casa Loma Conservatory’ – Billy Wilson on Flickr)

 

5. Town of Waikato – Matamata, New Zealand (The Hobbit Trilogy)

Going from farming fields to a fairy tale kingdom, the natural landscape of Waikato became the home of The Hobbit Trilogy in 1999. Since then, Hobbiton has drawn so many fans from around the world that it has become a permanent attraction to visit full of hobbit holes, gardens and the infamous Green Dragon Inn. This picturesque agricultural town is the perfect escape from reality, but also not too far from other stunning sights in New Zealand.

 

Hobbit

L: (The Hobbit, 2012) R: (‘Hobbiton’ – Rob Chandler on Wikimedia Commons)


6. Christ Church College – Oxford, England (Harry Potter)

This 16th Century cathedral was the inspiration behind the Great Hall in the Harry Potter series. Minus the gargoyles and floating candles, this historical building is a crucial part of the Oxford campus and attracts over 350,000 tourists each year. You can take a guided tour through both the college and the cathedral to follow in the footsteps of the Harry Potter characters. Whether you’re Team Gryffindor or Team Slytherin, you’ll be overwhelmed by the feeling of magic in the air!

HP
L: (Harry Potter, 2001) R: (‘Christ Church Hall 2012’ – chensiyuan on Wikimedia Commons)

 

7. Shakespeare and Company – Paris, France (Midnight in Paris)

It’s funny how one of the most popular bookstores in the city of love is English-based and has been inviting anglophone writers and readers to browse through their collection since 1951. Right on the banks of the Seine and across the street from Notre Dame, this literary nook could not be more perfect for bookworms to explore, including Woody Allen himself.

Midnight
L: (Midnight in Paris, 2011) R: (‘Shakespeare and Company bookstore’ – Shadowgate on Wikimedia Commons)

 

Have you visited a cool film location before? Tell us the place and the movie in the comments below!