Sitting happily on the border between the U.S. and Canada,
Ever read a book or see a movie with a gorgeous backdrop that you could only dream of visiting? Low and behold, there are several places in books and movies that are more than imaginary locales. So the next time you plan your vacation, consider stopping by one of these breathtaking places you didn’t know were real.
1. Hogwarts Express
Every Harry Potter fan will delight in the fact that the train that transports Harry to his new, fantastical world, is the Glenfinnan Viaduct, found in Lochaber, Scotland.
2. Overlook Hotel
Horror enthusiasts are probably more than willing to spend the night in the Overlook Hotel from The Shining. I, for one, would love an invite. The Stanley Hotel served as inspiration for King. King stayed in room 217 which showed up in his book (and the movie) as the “haunted” room. This Colorado hotel first opened in 1909 and has since developed quite the following for ghost hunters.
3. Paradise Falls
Venezuela is home to Angel Falls, also known as Paradise Falls in Pixar’s Up. The majestic scene is breathtakingly beautiful, and what makes it more desirable is the fact that it’s real!
4. Canyon City
Next time you want to run away from civilization and live in a cave, consider Canyon City from Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade. Well, actually, you might have better luck getting into Al Khazneh in Petra, Jordan.
Canyon City not far enough? Try Tatooine, Star Wars’ Luke and Anakin Skywalker desert planet. In reality, Matmata, Tuisia is the place that served as inspiration for the desolate planet. As of 2004, there were a little over 2,000 people living in Matmata.
6. Downtown Abbey
7. Silent Hill
The filmmakers of Silent Hill visited Centralia, Pennsylvania for inspiration. The strip mine beneath Centralia caught fire, and the residents were evacuated. To this day, the mine still burns 5 decades later.
The movie Big Fish is one of those fanciful, daydream type films from Tim Burton. A young Edward Bloom wanders into the town of Spectre where the strung lights and happy music give of the ambiance of dreams and resident poet Norther Winslow (Steve Buscemi) woos every woman in sight with his less than stellar poetry. Turns out, Spectre isn’t just a dream, it is actually Spectre, Alabama, and yes, you can pass through. It just may not be at the right time.