15 Greatest Travel Documentaries

15 Greatest Travel Documentaries

15 Greatest Travel Documentaries

15 Greatest Travel Documentaries:  The sense of wanderlust has always been the powerful motivation that makes us discover the unknown, learn new traditions, and just only enjoy the stunning charm of our Earth. The documentary moviemakers are the only ones who can take us to fetches of the world, making us feel the excitement of adventure and the joy of discoveries right away. Whether it is the breath-taking landscapes or the story-telling of the people, who live there, these films open an opportunity to an out-of-the-box world that exists beyond our yard.

In this article, we have disposed of the list of the 15 best travel documentaries, where each one is in fact, a captivating journey in its own right. Regardless of whether you are a die-hard traveler or an armchair explorer, this collection of films will feed the explorer in you and make you feel like it’s the perfect moment to set on your journey. Thus, walking in with a tub of popcorn, and occupying your seat, the documentaries will take you beyond any limits into the last corners of the planet.

1. Planet Earth (2006)

Narrated by the well-known Sir David Attenborough, planet Earth is a breathtaking journey to the different beauties that the natural world can offer. This ground-breaking series will take viewers on an adventure through several different life zones from the freezing tundra of the Arctic to the tropical forests of the Amazon. Through the use of cutting-edge cinematography and an inspiring chorus, “Planet Earth” is the zenith of our artistic awareness of the beauty and multifariousness of the planet.

2. Bucket List of 2007 (sha)

In this movie – titled “The Bucket List” – featuring Jack Nicholson and Morgan Freeman, we see two friends who are about to die from incurable illnesses and plan to have all the experiences they have always dreamed about. It makes us understand how to live to the fullest and take every opportunity to drop in the sky or visit the pyramid of Giza for instance.

3. Baraka (1992)

This “Baraka” did not have any narration. By this means, people would know the depicted world without boundaries of borders or cultures. Filming 48 countries on 6 continents for this documentary makes it a riveting assemblage of images expressive of the essence of humanity and nature. The movie not only steals the viewer with its but also hypnotizes him with its eerie music. Thus, “Bara” is a true example of visual narration.

4. The Salt of the Earth (2014)

This film concentrates on the life and work of well-known Brazilian photographer Sebastião Salgado and his artistic works that have revealed true human nature in its most real and heartbreaking moments. From the people who trying to stay strong while facing war to remote indigenous communities being photographed, “The Salt of the Earth” is a musical interpretation of what fills the human heart and how the picture can change the way we know the world.

5. Encounters at the End of the World (2007)

It is under the leadership of famous director Werner Herzog that “Encounters at the End of the World” is housed and brought to the audience, leaving them bewildered by the different and colorful cast of characters in an Antarctic expedition including scientists, philosophers, and eccentric explorers. Above all, while using Herzog’s signature touch of both humor and seriousness, the movie alternatively shows a different argument on one of the remotest and the harshest environments on our planet.

6. Koyaanisqatsi (1982)

Transferred from the original Hopi language, “Koyaanisqatsi” means “life out of harmony.” This work, which is visually striking and thought-provoking, captures the essence of a human being’s relationship with the environment. There is no dialog or narrator. In this particular presentation, the film’s cinematography and music create an effect that helps the audience visualize the booth of the environment by modern civilization.

7. The Motorcycle Diaries (2004).

Giving the background of a young Che Guevara, “The Motorcycle Diaries” movies his life-changing stage from a trip across South America with his friend Alberto Granado. On their motorbike journey across the continent, they are exposed to the richness of many cultures, beautiful scenery, and the harsh status of people who live in poverty and inequality, molding ideas of Guevara about revolution.

8. In his movie Long Way Round (2004)

is an exciting road trip series, where Ewan McGregor and Charley Boorman ride a motorbike from London to New York heading through 19 countries and covering over 32,186 kilometers. As they travel along, they bump into picturesque scenery, the friendliest locals they can ever meet, and also a fair share of mishaps, all of which demonstrate how fascinating long-distance travel can be.

9. Samsara (2011)

The equivalent of “Samsara,” which displays the staggering beauty and the complexities of the cycle of life, death, and rebirth, is from the creators of “Baraka.” Devoid of any dialogue or narration, this film naturally transports viewers on an enchanting voyage with cultural diversity, sacred places, and industrial territories to the braided relationships of everything.

10. Adventure of the Lonely Turtle (1994)

This moving documentary follows the outstanding lunge of a single loggerhead turtle that crosses the vast Pacific Ocean to its birthplace on the atoll of Bora Bora. Strap yourself in and get ready for a remarkable journey adorned by the most stunning underwater footage and delivered in a very touching narration – this will be a moving journey highlighting nature’s endurance and the value of preserving our delicate environment.

11. Wild China (2008)

Narrated by Bernard Hill, “Wild China” is the eye-opening, dramatic, and magnificent story of the diverse landscapes of the Chinese land from the snow-capped peaks of the Himalayas to the lush bamboo forests of Sichuan. Splendid cinematography, and revealing the life of scarce and endangered animals, this documentary is the actual festivity of the amazing mysteries of the earth.

12. With the Art of Travel (2008).

Romaneechartered by Alain de Botton is a compelling cinematic adaptation of the philosophical book ‘The Art of Travel’. However, it is accomplished with a set of vignettes and wise observations which kindle the necessity of travelers to look at their voyages as situations to learn from and see with a new mindset of self-examination.

13. The Way (2010)

Carrying Martin Sheen, it’s the touching tale of a father who goes on the 800km Camino de Santiago (the pilgrimage) in memory of his dear son no longer with him. He goes through it stopping at various spots and having encounters with a heterogeneous crew whereby each fellow traveler has their motivations and personal struggles in the physical and mental exertions of the trip.

14. Patterns of the Soul (2020)

Through the visual effects of Sylvane Michel’s documentary, the audience experiences an artistic ascent into the historical and unique cultures of West Papua, Indonesia. Bringing in unforgettable visuals and an up-close introduction of the area’s tribespeople, “Patterns of the Soul” appears as a feast of compassion and poetry for human diversity and perpetuating the human spirit to last forever.

15. The movie Call of the Wild from this year.

Set up by Jack London‘s book “The Call of the Wild”, the movie is an adventurous and warm-hearted story about Buck, a domestic dog that is displaced into the tough Yukon area as the gold rush starts. This film has impressive landscapes and a beautiful and moving story about the close-to-heart relationship between a human and an animal is worth the watch even for those who do not appreciate nature and fear adventure.

In the course of the time spent in these energizing documentaries, it becomes apparent that an internal desire for discoveries and experience of risks arises in you. Regardless of whether you desire breathtaking sceneries, personal journeys, or cultural gems, these movies will give you wanderlust and remind you of the wealth and cultural richness that is scattered beyond what you might already know.

Another important point to take into account is that even though these documentaries give the audience a sneak peek into the world of traveling, they can never substitute the real traveling by yourself. We must take into account the effects of our voyages on the environments we visit, especially those that are setting fragile ecosystems or weak societies. By adopting sustainable and responsible tourism approaches the wealth of the natural capital will be conserved to be enjoyed by many generations to come.

The digital age has introduced great help for tourists in the form of an online feedback management system. Travelers have the opportunity to use these platforms to exchange stories, put forward suggestions, and give constructive criticism to destinations, accommodations, and tour operators regarding their travel experience. Through these systems, we will be able to contribute to the permanent development of the travel sector which will ensure that our trips are not only ones to remember but also ones that respect and do not harm the environment.

Therefore, for those who are avid travelers or dreamers, here are the 15 best documentaries about traveling that will surely inspire you to set out on a new trip. Embrace the adventurous nature, and get yourself incorporated into new cultures and experiences that will make you feel proud of who you are.

What makes these documentaries different from others that belong to the travel genre?

The films in our lineup are chosen for their incredible lenses, gripping stories, and how they can carry you away to a distant land. Through them, you experience a special mix of fantastic scenery, impressive stories, and powerful ideas about what might be the key to the world that we live in.

Are these documentaries age-appropriated enough?

On the one hand, the majority of these films are suitable for families, however, some might be based on mature themes or contain gruesome images related to environmental or social issues. Always check the ratings and content warnings whenever you are watching with younger audiences.

But what if such documentaries become the source of education?

Absolutely! The vast majority of documentary filmmakers focus on unknown cultures, different ecosystems, and matters of great importance on a global scale, therefore, they are excellent academic resources. For this purpose, these films can be used to enrich lessons in geography, environmental studies, anthropology, and other related disciplines.

The question is there availability of these documentaries.

Numerous of these documentaries are on-demand on the most significant streaming platforms like Netflix, Amazon Prime, and Hulu, just as via digital rental or purchase mechanisms. Another source of these books could be through public libraries or educational institutions.

How does the adoption of the online feedback management system in the travel industry affect it?

As an exceptional instrument in travel business to collect Simpad waste Through the process of taking in and acting upon customer reviews and feedback, travel companies can continually refine their services, increasing satisfaction levels among the guests, and thereby promoting sustainable tourism.


The earth is vast and magnificent, spilling with natural aesthetics, diverse customs and peoples as well as compelling stories just waiting to be explored. These 15 travel documentaries, being the best in the genre, as well as offering knowledge of the richness and diversity of Earth, turn out to be an irresistible temptation to all of us and at the same time encourage us to travel the world.

Places ranged from the ice-cold Arctic and the vibrant Amazon to the glorious mountains of the Himalayas and the old cultures of West Papua. These films give us an amazing view that brings together the beauty of our earth and the tenacity of man.

By going on these movies we realize that going for travel is not simply about tallying the list of destinations to check out but rather it is about opening our minds to new ideas, dismissing our prejudice as well as getting the feeling of the blissful natural and cultural treasures surrounding us.

So, let these documentaries be your gateway to adventure, your passport to new horizons, and your inspiration to embrace the journey ahead with open eyes, open hearts, and an insatiable curiosity for the world around us.

Related Article:  A First Timer’s Guide To Travelling To Kauai, Hawaii

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