Unfortunately, this summer travel and vacations are severely restricted, but while we can’t hop on a plane and jet off around the world there is still a way in which we can fuel our wanderlust – through the medium of movies, TV shows and books.
No doubt this summer more people than ever are going to be delving into a book, binge-watching a new TV series, or streaming a movie which can transport them around the world and bring a little bit of the thrill of travel to their own homes.
With this in mind, we have analysed the most popular wanderlust movies, TV shows and books around the world according to Google search volume, to find out what people in each country are most likely to be watching and reading this summer to quench their desire for travel.
Here’s what we found!
It was fascinating to see which titles came out on top across different countries, and the popularity of several titles all around the world.
First, we looked at the most popular travel book in each country. Titles which continually proved popular included Into the Wild, Murder on the Orient Express and Cloud Atlas. The most popular book across the highest number of countries was Into the Wild which was found to be the most popular book in over 60 different countries, including France, Germany, India, and Peru. Other titles which proved popular included Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas – the most popular in the USA, The Alchemist – the most popular in the UK, and Eat, Pray, Love – the most popular in Ireland.
Next, we looked at the most popular wanderlust TV shows – this was TV shows where the plotline followed a travel journey or where the destination and setting of the TV show was a pivotal part of the storyline or visual scenes – for example, those breathtaking Scottish landscapes of Outlander or the lusted after Californian city of Monterey where those dreamy Big Little Lies shots are filmed.
Both Outlander and Big Little Lies were two of the recurring TV shows, alongside NYC favourites Gossip Girl and Sex and the City, beach classic Baywatch, and sunshine reality show Love Island.
Finally, we looked at movies, and a standout favourite was the 2018 hit Crazy, Rich, Asians which follows US professor Rachel as she travels to the bright lights of Singapore to meet her boyfriend’s family. Sure enough, this was the most popular movie in Singapore – not surprising given the incredible spotlight it shines on the vibrant country. It was also the most popular in over 50 other countries including the USA, Australia and Canada.
Other wanderlust movie titles which proved popular across the world included Catch Me If You Can, Mamma Mia!, and Dirty Dancing.
To conduct our research we compiled a list of the most celebrated wanderlust movies, TV shows and books and analysed the search volume for each of these in every country around the world.
We compiled the list of movies, TV shows and books to use by scouring a range of trusted articles rounding up the best travel-themed movies, shows and books. By ‘travel themed’, this includes where the narrative is focused on a travel journey or destination and/or where the setting is a primary focus of the narrative or visuals.
We used Ahrefs to determine the average monthly search volume for each title by country.
For some countries, the relevant search data was not available and so these countries have been omitted from the results.
Full data set available upon request.