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MOVIES LIKE INTO THE WILD 

10 MUST SEE TRAVEL MOVIES

“Don’t settle down and sit in one place. Move around, be nomadic, make each day a new horizon. You are still going to live a long time, Ron, and it would be a shame if you did not take the opportunity to revolutionize your life and move into an entirely new realm of experience”

-Into the Wild-

If you are here, you are probably one of those intrepid travelers that love the idea of getting lost in the middle of nowhere like in movies like Into the Wild.

Released in 2007 and with Emile Hirsch as the protagonist, Sean Penn narrates and directs this movie based on the real story of Christopher McCandless. Who is Christopher? He was an adventurous soul that leaves behind his standard life and decides to break with what is socially accepted and, after finishing college to sets off on a journey with the objective of discovering the real sense of life and live in full contact with nature.

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Although it seems hard to equalize this incredible movie that will make you rediscover the audacious spirit you have inside, I’ve gathered the best travel movies like into the wild that will excite you and make you want to pack your bags and venture into the unknown.

And remember…

“Happiness only real when shared”

-Into the Wild-

10 TRAVEL MOVIES LIKE INTO THE WILD

1. Tracks

“To be free is to learn, to test yourself constantly, to gamble. It is not safe. I had learned to use my fears as stepping stones rather than stumbling blocks”
-Robyn Davidson, Desert Places-

Realized in 2014. This film is based on the book of Robyn Davidson’s narrating her own journey in the mid-’70s of   1,7000 miles crossing the desert of Australia with 4 camels and her dog. Before starting the journey people around her did not make it easy questioning the adventure she was going to immerse in or questioning the fact that she was going alone. Along the journey, she grows, she learns and she defines what was freedom for her. The performance of Mia Wasikowska, the protagonist is outstanding during the whole movie. Tracks, 100% deserves this first spot in my list of movies like Into the Wild.

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Tracks | Movies like Into the Wild

“And there are new kinds of nomads, not people who are at home everywhere, but who are at home nowhere. I was one of them ”
-Robyn Davidson, Desert Places-

2. The secret life of Walter Mitty

Life is about courage and going into the unknown

-The secret life of Walter Mitty-

Released in 2013. Starring and directed by Ben Stiller, this motivational film that relates the life of a photography assistant living a simple and ordinary life. Daydreaming about awesome adventures till the day he, impulsed by the encouragement of his crush, decides to take the reins of his life and venture in what was going to be his life experience. One of the movies like Into the Wild that best depicts the meaning behind the phrase “Who does not risk, does not win” and will inspire you to live the life you want and not how others expect you to live.

This film stimulates that feeling of freedom: Mental and physical freedom, freedom to decide what you want, freedom to choose and stop being influenced by people and society. And if this is not enough, the quality of the images and impressive sceneries will leave you speechless. Get ready to travel from your sofa and teleport to some of the most beautiful places in the world.

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The secret life of Walter Mitty | Movies like into the wild

3. White Massai

“I climb behind the steering wheel… I drive off immediately without once looking back; it’s a long journey but it leads to freedom.”
-Corinne Hofmann, The White Masai-

Realized in 2005, directed by Hermine Huntgeburth, and it is based on the novel of Corinne Hofmann that relates the life of the author and what changed it on her journey to Kenia.  It is a story about a Swiss woman that traveling to Kenia, meets a Massai warrior and falls in love with him. Even though the situation is unusual and difficult she decides to leave everything behind and marry the Massai.

During the whole film, you’ll learn about the culture of Massais and their way of living. In my opinion, the key feature to learn about this movie, which is common to every journey I’ve done, is: Learning and being aware of the cultural differences (sometimes barriers) and how we are sometimes ”forced” to quickly adapt to changes while traveling.

*A Massai is an African tribe that lives, mainly, in Kenia and Tanzania and speaks the Swahili language.

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White Massai ! Movies like Into the wild

4. Bethany Hamilton: Unstoppable

“Courage doesn’t mean you don’t get afraid. Courage means you don’t let fear stop you.”

-Bethany Hamilton, Unstoppable-

Released in 2018, this Bethany hamilton autobiographic film relates how was her life before and after a Shark attack that left her with only one arm. What this attack could not take away from here was her dreams and her deep passion of surfing. After the accident, people did not expect her to continue surfing as her capacities were never going to be the same, but she escapes from what others thought.

This story of overcoming adversity, fighting for her true passion despite the obstacles, is a great example for anyone in confronting every obstacle with positivity and never giving up. On top of her inspiring story beach sceneries during the whole film are incredible, it will make you want to pack your things and book your ticket to Hawai!

“I don’t need easy. I just need possible.”

-Bethany Hamilton, Unstoppable-

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bethany Hamilton: Unstoppable | Movies like Into the Wild

5. Free solo

“No matter the risks we take, we always consider the end to be too soon, even though in life, more than anything else, quality should be more important than quantity”

-Alex Honnold, Free Solo-

Released in 2018. If you want to feel alive and get inspired to power your passion this is your film. This is an amazing film documentary of National Geographic about the brave ropeless climber Alex Honnold. Each minute of the 96 minutes duration of this documentary, is for most of the spectators the most intense minutes of a while. Free Solo has already amazed the whole world and won the Oscar in 2019 for the best documentary.

It takes place in Yosemite, specifically in “The Captain”, a vertical rock formation of 914 meters above sea level. The hero: Alex Honnold, with the only objective of climbing it with no ropes nor safety gear. Adrenaline seeker and risk taker are 2 of the first words that come to my mind if I have to describe him. It gave me the motivation to push myself to my limits in order to achieve that objective that I really want to achieve and understand that we have to be ready to live with the consequences of the risks we are taking. Take risks, do not be afraid to fail.

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Free Solo | Movies like Into the Wild

6. Eat, Pray, Love

“Happiness is the consequence of personal effort. You fight for it, strive for it, insist upon it, and sometimes even travel around the world looking for it.”
Elizabeth Gilbert, Eat, Pray, Love

Released in 2010 and directed by Ryan Murphy is an incredible film protagonized by Julia Roberts and Javier Bardem among other actors. Eat pray love, an essential movie on my list of movies like into the wild has everything a good movie needs: personal growth, slow and durable journeys, a complete transformation of the characters along with the film and the discovery of new cultures.

Elizabeth Gilbert (Julia Roberts), the main character, is a woman that had ”everything” in life, a great job, a husband and a beautiful house, but lacked the two greatest pillars of life, happiness and lack of sense in her life. She decides to break with everything and leaves everything behind, embarking herself on a one-year trip.

Can you imagine the incredible adventures she had during her journeys to Italy, India, and Bali? The message I received from this film is that there are multiples ways of living life, there is not one predeterminate perfect scenery, we need to follow what really makes us happy. The book in which the film is inspired is also very recommendable as well!

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Eat, pray, love | Movies like Into the Wild

7. Everest

“It’s not the altitude, it’s the attitude.”

-Everest-

Released in 2015. Based on a true story movie that inspires to never stop trying and fighting for what you want, even though things get tough, very tough. It also highlights the sense of friendship and fellowship.  Especially recommended to extreme sports lovers!

This movie tells us the story that happened in the Everest during a big storm to 8 mountaineers while trying to reach the summit on the 10th of May 1996. Not only the story but the landscape is amazing in the movie, you’ll be directly transported to the Himalayas.  Directed by Baltasar Kormákur and starring by Jason Clarke, Josh Brolin, John Hawkes, Robin Wright, Michael Kelly, Keira Knightley, Emily Watson, Sam Worthington, and Jake Gyllenhaal.

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Everest | Movies like Into the Wild

8. Seven years in Tibet

“We have a saying in Tibet: If a problem can be solved there is no use worrying about it. If it can’t be solved, worrying will do no good.”

-Seven years in Tibet-

Released in 1997 and based on the book of the Austrian alpinist Heinrich Harrer and his experiences in Tibet in 1944. During the dawn of World War II, Heinrich decides to go and climb the precious Nanga Parbat but what he was not expecting is that his adventure will last 7 whole years. He was capture for two years by British troops being accused of being a Nazi spy. He then manages to escape and hides in the sacred and majestic city of Lhasa where he met the Dalai Lama, whom radically changed his life forever. While his intense and valuable friendship with the Dalai Lama, Tibet suffers the invasion of China.

This classic and excellent film was done by Jean Jacques Annaud as director and Bratt Pitt as the main character among a lot of excellent characters. As a highlight, I would stand out the magnificent music by John Williams mixed with the Tibetan tones of the Himalayas.

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7 Years in Tibet | Movies like Into the Wild

9. Wild

“I’m a free spirit who never had the balls to be free.”
-Cheryl Strayed, Wild-

Released in 2014 and directed by Jean-Marc Vallée. It is based on Cheryl Strayed memoir, that after her mother passed away she got onto a downward spiral on her life and decided to hike 1,100 miles of the Pacific Crest Trail taking this long journey as a way of self-discovery and healing. The performance of  Reese Witherspoon is outstanding and the landscapes all along the movie are incredible as well.

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Wild | Movies like into the wild

10. The beach

“I still believe in paradise. But now at least I know it’s not someplace you can look for. Because it’s not where you go. It’s how you feel for a moment in your life when you’re a part of something. And if you find that moment, it lasts forever.”
-The beach-

Realized in 2000, directed by Danny Boyle and protagonist by Leonardo DiCaprio, Tilda Swinton, Virginie Ledoyen, Guillaume Canet, and Robert Carlyle. Narrates the trip to Ko Phi Phi Le in Thailand of a young man looking for adventure and paradise. Due to a deep search of paradise, he finds himself immersed in an experience he never would have thought about. Beaches and forest landscapes are amazing in this film.

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The beach | Movies like Into the Wild

 

There are no excuses now! Now that we have this list of movies like Into the Wild we should start waking up that adventurous spirit that we all have inside. If you still need a little bit more inspiration, e-mail me to gabriela@nomadicmindtravel.com and I’ll do my best to help you!

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About the author

I am an enthusiastic digital marketer and an obsessed traveler in a never-ending love affair with solo world travel. I spend half of my life creating and marketing content and the other half within the pages of my passport. I am driven with a passion for exploring the planet, an insatiable desire for adventures, meeting new people, understanding their culture, and creating wonderful memories.

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