If you liked our previous article on movie locations, then you’ll enjoy this one too.
The best movies have the power to transport you to exciting places or faraway worlds. They can put you in the moment and make you feel like you’re part of the action. What could be more exciting than that?
Well, how about really being there?
We’re not talking about virtual reality tours or amusement park knockoffs. We’re talking about setting your feet on the same places that set the stage for some of Hollywood’s most iconic moments — or at least their real-world counterparts.
You can pretend you’re in the middle of your favorite scenes, so recite some lines if you feel like it or take a few Instagram-worthy snaps.
Bring Hollywood to life by visiting these five inspiring movie locations.
1The castle from “Harry Potter”
First of all, there’s the famous Harry Potter series.
You’re a J.K. Rowling fan and you’ve got a wand and a Ravenclaw scarf to prove it. If only you could step inside Hogwarts and get a glimpse of Harry and his wizarding pals’ world.
Well, you can! And we’re not talking about the Universal Studios look-alike in Florida.
Although this movie used plenty of cool special effects to transport you to an ageless time, its makers chose a 500-year-old school as Hogwarts’ inspiration. Hop across the pond and visit Christ Church College in Oxford, United Kingdom. Guided trots around campus cost £13 (or about $17) per person and they’ll give you all the insights you can handle. Even a Slytherin would feel a little giddy about that.
2“The Sound of Music” scenery
Unfortunately, you won’t be reenacting Julie Andrew’s iconic opening scene because the meadow where the scene was shot is privately owned. The owner isn’t welcoming to visitors, too.
Fortunately, the other scenes from this classic were filmed on location in Salzburg, Austria. More than 300,000 fans journey each year to this picturesque part of Europe, looking for their own chance to climb every mountain and spot Edelweiss in bloom.
Not sure you’re comfortable exploring alone? No problem. Tours abound for “Sound of Music” aficionados like you.
3The Rebel base from “Star Wars: Episode IV — A New Hope”
If you’ve got the skills to bull’s eye a womp rat in a T-16, then you’ll definitely want to check out Tikal in Guatemala.
This archeological site served as the Rebel Alliance base on Yavin 4. You won’t find any X-wings in the site’s temples. However, you can learn all about a civilization from a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away. Tikal was one of the Mayan civilization’s largest cities during the Classic Era — more than 1,000 years ago.
Entry into the park will only set you back $20, but make sure you give yourself plenty of time. The central part of this ancient city covers almost 10 square miles.
4The bridge from James Bond’s “Skyfall” thriller
Got a sweet spot for engineering marvels from the big screen? Then, you’ll want to check out the Varda Viaduct. This is where James Bond fell to his apparent doom in the opening of “Skyfall,” the Bond series’ 50th-anniversary offering.
Although train service prohibits tourists from walking the bridge, you can head to the surrounding cliffs in Istanbul and take in its 102-year-old glory. And if you’re going to Turkey anyway, you might as well absorb the culture.
5The grate where Marilyn Monroe’s dress went viral
Finally, there’s that iconic white cocktail dress blowing in the air.
Although Marily Monroe is no longer with us, she’s cemented her place in American history and so has the location of her dress “slip-up” during the filming of “The Seven Year Itch.”
Monroe’s husband at the time, baseball slugger Joe DiMaggio, didn’t appreciate the publicity stunt. Fortunately, you can still appreciate one of the most famous subway grates in movie history. It’s in New York City, on the corner of Lexington Avenue and 52nd Street.
While there are plenty of places we can’t visit (the Death Star comes to mind), there are tons of fantastic movie locations we can still visit. Next time you watch an awesome flick, take note of the scenery and do a little research after. You might be able to see a movie magic come to life.
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6Author: Tony Tie
Tony Tie is a numbers-obsessed marketer, life hacker, and public speaker who has helped various Fortune 500 companies grow their online presence. Located in Toronto, he is currently the senior search marketer at Expedia Canada, the leading travel booking platform for flights, hotels, car rentals, cruises, and local activities.