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I love watching travel videos, observing the world from other people’s points of view and seeing their stories. The ten videos below go so far beyond “entertaining” or “interesting” that they can only be described as “inspiring.” I can hardly sit still watching these films because I want to get in the car, plane, train or just get my boots on for a new adventure. But I do sit still. I take in the story. I am rewarded by seeing something new each time I watch them.
Most of these videos are not produced by professional film crews; they are recorded by a traveler with a camera. I’m in awe of their planning (or lack of planning), their filming/editing skill and, their passion for travel. This passion for travel translates directly into passion for the imagery with which they tell their stories. If these films have one unifying theme, it’s their artistry. They are not all just pretty pictures or tricky filming. These videos push the “art” of making a travel video in ways that haven’t been seen before. They are the foundation from which next year’s videos will be built. With inspiration like this, next year’s films will be nothing short of spectacular!
#10 Road Trip Montana : Glacier Climate Change Interview with Ranger Graves
JoshyWashington ponders global warming in Glacier National Park.
This video has everything that a travel video needs, nice visuals that give the setting, an informative interview and philosophical context.
#9 Timescapes “Death is the Road to Awe”
Time-lapse footage of rock formations in the desert southwest, United States.
Tom Lowe takes timelapse in a whole new direction.
#8 Eyjafjallajökull Volcano Time Lapse
A gorgeous, haunting time lapse of Eyjafjallajökull.
The beauty of timelapse is taking something that appears static, such as a massive geologic event, and illustrating the dynamics that affect us. This video does it with artistic beauty.
#7 Trekking and Ice Climbing in Iceland
Robin makes us all drool for the ice-covered mountains of Iceland with his trekking adventure.
Tell me a story with imagery and music that gives me the “feel” of the place and you’ve got a winner.
#6 Road Trippin from Atlanta to L.A.
Timelapse roadtrip across the United States.
I love being on the road. The long miles, music, the simple beauty of landscape rolling by and the joy of getting out and stretching my legs. This video nails it!
#5 InTransit: Ep. 26 – Panama City, Panama
Peter reaches the end of his pan-American journey.
This is the final episode of Peter Bragiel’s incredible “In Transit” series. It captures the full emotional range of an adventure completed, including a recap of the “memories.” I feel like I’m reliving the trip with him.”
#4 The Season Episode 10
After a near-death experience, Jonaven reassesses his life and focuses on his ideals.
This episode of “The Season” zeros in on the sacrifices we make in life and tells the story of how pro snowboarder Jonaven Moore gave up some lucrative gigs to work on a project he really believes in.
#3 The Father Spirit Documentary
A son aims to enrich his father’s final days with a motorcycle trip through the Himalayas.
Not only is the filming top-notch, but this is one of the most moving teasers I’ve ever seen.
#2 A Skiers Journey ~ The Sickest Ski Adventure of 2010
Seriously, the sickest ski adventure of the year.
Solid storyline, exotic location, beautiful videography. What more could you ask from a travel video?
#1 The Longest Way
Timelapse of Christoph’s beard growing during his walk across China.
I have never seen a more perfect illustration of travel’s transformative properties, both physically and on the soul. I never get tired of watching this.