10 Iconic Romantic Movie Locations
Does your heart swoon for romantic films? Fall in love all over again while testing your cinematic knowledge of the 10 most romantic locations from the big screen.
What’s your favourite romantic movie destination?
Watching your favourite destination depicted larger than life in the theatre is guaranteed to spark wanderlust. And when the location is associated with a story brimming with love and passion, the infatuation can be all consuming. Challenge your film and travel expertise with this globetrotting quiz featuring the world’s most romantic movie destinations.
1. Where else can you grab breakfast in front of an iconic jewellery store, reunite with your soulmate on a park’s skating rink, and “have what she’s having” in a downtown deli?
New York City
For many romantic films, there’s no better setting than the Big Apple. Whether it’s Audrey Hepburn dreaming of diamonds and romance at Tiffany’s on 5th Avenue, or Meg Ryan “expressing” herself loudly to Billy Crystal over a club sandwich, these scenes would’ve had a completely different feel had they been played out anywhere else. An Affair to Remember, Love Story, Sex and the City, and Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind are all memorable movies that love New York.
2. Take a romantic midnight stroll back in time, swing by an extravagant, hyperkinetic cabaret theatre, and then rekindle an overnight love before the sun sets in this European metropolis.
Love conquers all in the City of Light. The Eiffel Tower, the Seine, the Arc de Triomphe, Notre Dame Cathedral – Paris wears her romance everywhere you look. Case in point, the arty and eccentric locale of the Montmartre district served as Audrey Tautou’s charming co-star in Amélie. For more love Parisian style, check out Midnight in Paris, Charade, Moulin Rouge, Breathless and Before Sunset.
3. A holiday in this Eternal City may not result in an amorous clinch with Gregory Peck, but you can always wish for your own Mr. Right by tossing spare change into the nearest fountain. No response from Cupid? Stoke some warm and fuzzy feelings from the bottom of a bowl of fresh pasta or gelato.
For Hollywood, it seems that all roads do lead to Rome. The ancient city is a favourite go-to destination for on-screen romantic adventures. The much beloved Roman Holiday starring Audrey Hepburn and Gregory Peck tantalized film fans with images of the Colosseum, the Spanish Steps and the mysterious Mouth of Truth. Craving more movies embracing La Dolce Vita? See Three Coins in the Fountain and To Rome with Love.
4. Two Hollywood icons made this 1995 romantic drama an Oscar nominated success. Based on a hugely successful novel, this story of love and loss in Midwestern America crossed many bridges to become one of the most highly regarded movies of its genre.
Madison County, Iowa
This slice of America’s heartland is a short drive outside of Des Moines, Iowa. Madison County and its six rustic bridges became a must-see tourist spot after the publication of Robert James Waller’s novel and the release of its film adaptation. Starring Meryl Streep and Clint Eastwood, The Bridges of Madison County was filmed around the town of Winterset, featuring its Roseman Bridge, Holliwell Covered Bridge, and the Northside Café.
5. As time goes by, this 1942 Oscar winner continues to top the charts as one most acclaimed romantic films of all time. Despite the exotic locale being showcased in the movie’s title, the majority of filming was actually completed on a Hollywood soundstage.
Casablanca, starring Humphrey Bogart and Ingrid Bergman, won the 1942 Academy Award for Best Picture. Set during World War II, this romantic drama sent hearts a flutter with its palatable chemistry between the two lead actors. Thanks to the film’s worldwide success and the sex appeal of its stars, Casablanca is still regarded today as a hot spot for romance.
6. If you’re looking for love at the bottom of a wine glass, this destination may be your perfect accompaniment. Add in some sun-soaked scenery and the laid back vibe and you’ve bought yourself a one-way ticket to nirvana.
Wine Country, California
Raise your glass to Sideways, a flick that celebrates wine and women. Actors Paul Giamatti and Thomas Haden Church aren’t your typical rom-com heroes, and that’s just what moviegoers loved about them! Their adventure in California’s wine country awakened the taste buds of audiences to the possibilities of a vineyard escape.
7. After meeting during a train journey through Europe, an American male and a French beauty spend a flirtatious evening together in this celebrated City of Music. As the night slips into morning, the pair unexpectedly fall in love even though they may never see each other again.
Before Sunrise, the 1995 film starring Ethan Hawke and Julie Delpy, is a low-key romance set in the beautiful streets of Vienna. The city’s famous landmarks (the Danube canal and Wiener Riesenrad) provide an amorous backdrop for their unexpected and intense relationship. Film fans fell hard for Before Sunrise, prompting director Richard Linklater to bring back the actors for two sequels, Before Sunset in 2004 and Before Midnight in 2013.
8. A diary-obsessed singleton, a star-struck bookseller, and a wacky collection of wedding guests encounter love (and in some cases, loss) in this most royal of European destinations. Surprisingly, one man stars in all three of these rom-coms. We’ll grant you a moment to think this one through, but just remember…in this city, love actually is all around.
Hugh Grant is a one-man romantic comedy machine. Starring in Bridget Jones’ Diary, Notting Hill, and Four Weddings and a Funeral (not to mention Love Actually), Hugh is one loved-up Londoner. The city famous for Big Ben, the British Royal Family and the Thames has also played Cupid to several other motion pictures including Sliding Doors, Closer and Wimbledon.
9. Real life took a page from the reel life when actors Blake Lively and Ryan Reynolds tied the knot in this southern U.S. state in 2012. Perhaps the pair took “notes” and “booked” their wedding after they were smitten by the passionate on-screen performances by two of Canada’s most popular actors.
Filmgoers wept into their popcorn while watching the romantic trials and tribulations of Ryan Gosling and Rachel McAdams in The Notebook. This best-selling book turned motion picture made audiences fall in love with steamy South Carolina. Tearing a page from the movie’s script, actors Blake Lively and Ryan Reynolds said ‘I do’ at the Boone Hall Plantation just outside of Charleston – the setting for the summer home of McAdam’s character.
10. Despite their Swedish roots, ABBA will be forever associated with this Mediterranean country – thanks to Hollywood.
Greece was ready for its close-up in this hit musical starring Colin Firth, Meryl Streep, Pierce Brosnan and Amanda Seyfried. Filmed in the picturesque village of Damouchari, Mamma Mia! became the highest grossing movie musical of all time. The sun-kissed beaches, azure waters and cloudless skies created an ideal setting for this happy-go-lucky love story. Explore more of Greece’s celluloid charms in For Your Eyes Only and Captain Corelli’s Mandolin.