These 15 iconic film locations will transport you straight into the movies. Want to chase Rocky Balboa up the steps of the Philadelphia Museum of Art or tuck into Amélie’s crème brulée in Café des Deux Moulins? No problem. You’ll even be able to experience fictitious spots: swim off the shore of Jaws’ Amity Island; surf at Quileute beach La Push; even walk in Frodo’s tiny footsteps in The Shire.
Most iconic movie locations
Rocky, Philadelphia, USA
As they say in Team America, every great movie needs a montage – and the montage in Rocky is probably the most famous of them all. Re-enact Stallone’s jog up the 68 steps of the Philadelphia Museum of Art – just try not to hum ‘Gonna Fly Now’ too loud.
Jaws, Massachusetts, USA
For Spielberg’s classic thriller, Jaws, Joseph Sylva State Beach became fictional Amity Island. Visit the dock and see the place where the suspected fishy culprit was strung up for the town to see or head over to the beach and see the spot where the Kinter boy was killed. Just stay out of the water…
Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone, London, England
In both J. K. Rowling’s magical Harry Potter books and the movie, the Hogwarts Express, which takes the young wizards to school, departs from Platform 9¾ at Kings Cross Station. If you want to follow in the footsteps of Harry and the Weasley family, head to the arch between platforms 4 and 5. Just don’t try to run through the wall – unless you’re in the market for a headache.
Amélie, Paris, France
Jean-Pierre Jeunet turned Paris’s Montmartre into a magical place for his Oscar-nominated masterpiece Amélie. One of the most memorable locations from the movie is the beautiful art deco cafe where Amélie worked. Head inside to try the delicious crème brulée, which is now named after Amélie.
Mamma Mia!, Skopelos, Greece
Some ridiculously beautiful locations form the backdrop for the action in Mamma Mia! One that jumps out is the chapel in which Sophie and Sky are to be married. This was filmed at the Convent of Agios Ioannia Prodromos, which juts out into the sea atop a 100 meter rock formation.
Twilight, Oregon, USA
Step into the Twilight world and discover the beach where Bella begins to realise that Edward’s not like everybody else; the location of her reckless cliff dive; and the place where Bella and Jacob’s friendship blossoms – Quileute beach La Push. When its not playing host to werewolves, the beach is actually called Indian Beach, which you’ll find Ecola State Park, Oregon, about two miles north of Cannon Beach.
The Hangover, Nevada, USA
The Hangover, the tale of a stag night gone very wrong in sin city, was largely filmed in Las Vegas. Most memorable is the villa in Caesars Palace where the doomed four stay. If you have the readies, you can book in for a night yourself – just hope you won’t find Mike Tyson or a tiger waiting for you. You might also want to take a trip up to the hotel’s roof and see the spot Doug is held captive in for the majority of the movie.
Sex and the City, New York, USA
A million hearts broke for Carrie when her dream man, Big, ditched her at the altar in the first Sex and the City movie. If it doesn’t hurt too much, you can visit the location of Carrie’s fairytale day, The New York Public Library, which is on 5th Avenue between 40th and 42nd Street.
The English Patient, Tuscany, Italy
In The English Patient, Kip famously takes Hana to a church, secures her into a harness and shows her its frescos with a flare. You can still visit the location of this romantic scene, the Basilica San Francesco – and although the chapel has since been restored, you can still take in its wonderful painted ceiling.
The Talented Mr. Ripley, Rome, Italy
In Anthony Minghella’s version of The Talented Ripley, Dickie and Ripley visit jazz Nightclub Vesuvio in Naples and perform Tu Vuo’ Fa L’Americano. In reality, the Vesuvio is Caffè Latino, a bar in Rome. They’re used to film tourists here, and if you’re really lucky the barman might teach you the song Jude Law and Matt Damon sang in the movie.
Inception, Paris, France
It may all seem make-believe, but Christopher Nolan’s extraordinary Inception was filmed across several counties – leaving in its wake real-life locations that you can now visit. A large amount of the action takes place in Paris, including the pivotal scene between Ariadne and Cobb when the Cafe Debussy explodes around them. This was, in fact, filmed at a deli, Da Stuzzi – which Nolan’s team turned into a cafe for the scene. It’s still there to see – they didn’t blow it up for the movie, but instead used high-pressure nitrogen to give the effect of a series of blasts.
Pretty Woman, Los Angeles, USA
Think Pretty Woman and you might think of the Regent Beverly Wiltshire – the hotel where Vivian and Edward’s relationship begins. But for an alternative Pretty Woman experience, venture away from the glamour of the Wiltshire to the Las Palmas Hotel, just off Hollywood Boulevard. This is home to Vivian’s apartment with Kat in the movie, and the spot where Edward climbs the fire escape to the sounds of Traviata.
The Lord of the Rings, Waikato, New Zealand
The originally named Hobbiton, home of hobbits Frodo, Bilbo Baggins, Sam and Pippin, was built especially for The Lord of the Rings in Waikato’s Hinuera Valley. Although the location is back to its pre-hobbit state and the village is no longer there, you can visit The Shire on a tour of the valley and walk in Frodo’s tiny footsteps.
Lost in Translation, the Park Hyatt Tokyo, Tokyo, Japan
Dive headfirst into the scenery of Lost in Translation and stay at the Park Hyatt in Tokyo. This location was used for all the internal hotel scenes, as well as shots of the pool and many of the hotel’s spectacular views. If you don’t have the readies to stay in the hotel, pop in to its bar (where Bob and Charlotte meet in the movie) for a Sofia cocktail, named after the movie’s writer/director Sofia Coppola.
Notting Hill, London, England
Visit the house with the blue door, home to Will Thacker in Notting Hill, at 280 Westbourne Park Road. It’s where he takes Anna after spilling orange juice on her and where Spike poses in his Y-fronts for the press – or at least it seems to be. Appearances can be deceiving and although this is the door shown in the movie, the interior shots of the flat were filmed elsewhere. No one really believed central London flats are that spacious, right?
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