Movie based travel

The Big Picture: Movie Inspired Travel

Inspiration for travel can come in many shapes and forms. For LeafCanoer, Toni Frazer, her travel inspiration comes from the movies. A native Australian and blogger at Enchanted Serendipity, Toni bases many of her travels on movie locations throughout the world. She shares some of her movie inspired travel experiences in leafs such as “The Notebook Filming Locations”, “Chicago, Illinois Filming Locations”,  “Georgia Filming Locations,” and “North Carolina Filming Locations,” to name a few. The LeafCanoe team recently sat down with Toni to chat about her unique travel style.

How did the adventure with visiting movie locations start?
In 2008, I went overseas for the first time to the United States. Whilst I had planned to visit many cities, the majority of my itinerary came from film and TV locations of my favorite productions.

How do you choose the movie locations?
I work out what I want to see from my favorite movies and TV shows, and determine whether visiting them all is doable in one trip. Doing this has taken me to many beautiful places that I would not have known: Wilmington, North Carolina, the outer suburbs of Chicago, and the Staten Island boardwalk. These are now in my top places in the world to see. It’s pretty incredible!

What do you do once you reach the movie destination?
It helps that I love the United States so much, as there are many things to see in this country alone. Depending on where a location is, I may stay a few nights and explore the city or town. Sometimes I will drive through the town on my way to another bigger city. It all depends on how big a place is and what else I plan on seeing.

What’s your best movie location so far and why?
The one location I had to see was Dawson’s house from Dawson’s Creek. This house was a huge part of the show, and has been a favorite of mine for a long time. It looked amazing on screen, so I went to Wilmington, NC to see this house, and it was a dream come true. I have been back 3 times now. I just love it!

Have you ever been surprised (positively or negatively) when you arrived to a movie location?
The benefit of film and TV is that they can dress up a place and make it look good when in reality it is really not. Sometimes places can be in bad areas, so having a car is paramount to being able to see these places. The most surprising things are when a house looks gigantic on screen, and then you see it and it is a lot smaller in real life.

Is there anything memorable that has happened to you during your travels?
If doing this has taught me anything, it is that films and TV shows can have beautiful settings. Sometimes you watch something enough that you feel that you have been there before. You recognize your surroundings, even though it is the first time. It is a weird sensation. Seeing these locations makes the films and TV shows come to life. These stories are no longer fictional. It changes everything.

What are your favorite movie websites and blogs?
I love Lindsey Blake’s I Am Not A Stalker website, as she predominately stalks places in LA. Another good site is the Worldwide Guide to Movie Locations. The site and associated book give a great deal of information on places you can visit, which helped me  track down locations for my own site.

What leafs can we expect next from you?
I will soon be adding themed leafs regarding specific genres like Romantic comedies, as well as individual films and TV shows. It’s going to be exciting to continue to create leafs that people can use themselves based on what their interests are and what films and TV shows they enjoy. Hopefully these will inspire other LeafCanoers to get out there and explore like I do.

Check out more of Toni’s leafs by downloading the LeafCanoe app. To read more of Toni’s movie inspired travel stories, visit her blog, Enchanted Serendipity.

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