What kind of headline is that you may ask? “10 Best Travel Videos to Help You Breathe Again.” Well first off, it got your attention but secondly, I believe that travel allows us to finally decompress from life and experience freedoms that we don’t get in our day to day routines. Too often were working hard, running households and all the time, we seem to be holding our breath and not living. Travel allows us to do that and if we can’t travel, well why not watch some great travel videos?
My Criteria for a Good Travel Video
I have to admit, creating great travel videos is difficult and I only wish I could be at the level of the next 10 videos I will share. Here are the things I looked for before sharing these gems:
- Makes you want to pack your bag
- Excellent photography
- Great editing
- Great use of music
- Cinematic feel or great story
One of the reasons I was inspired to create this list, I was at dinner with some friends, one of whom is a photographer for a non-profit and he was sharing his work. I was blown away by his editing and storyline and thought it was important to share his video. Sadly, one of his most impactful pieces has less than 2,000 views. But before I share Eric’s work, here are some of my favorite travel videos in no particular order.
Let’s Go – Seattle
I felt it was appropriate to put a video of my hometown up first. The cinematography here is beautifully done and the opening scene with the waterfall is at Snoqualmie Falls where my company takes customers on our daily Seattle tours.
Exploring Palau: A Secret Paradise
The Dfly team has put together some great videos, but this one is probably my favorite. Using great transitions, underwater footage and some great slow motion video using something they call “The Blob”, this video is fun and makes you wish you were on vacation right now with your best friends.
Alternative Reality – Burning Man
This video may seem a bit dated being from 2014, but Stephane Kiss did a great job of bringing cinematography type production into this video. I experienced Burning Man in 2007 when it was much smaller than it is today, but this video really captured the vibe and the feel of this event. Who else is missing the playa dust?
One Month in Italy
Jenna Sue has created a cinematic video of her month-long trip to Italy. The use of exciting transitions and lots of details shot from the beaches of the Amalfi Coast to the countryside of Sicily, to the romance of Venice with plenty of beautiful drone footage throughout. Check out her Youtube channel with lots of other great travel footage from Greece, Sri Lanka, and Morocco.
Gateway to the Ganges: India’s Holy Cities
Brandon Li takes the production of travel videos to a whole new level. His production quality, storyline, transitions and everything about how he shoots his travel videos has me in awe. His Youtube channel also shares a lot of the techniques and equipment he uses to create these mini travel masterpieces.
Make it Count
You’ll notice one of the secrets to getting people to click on videos is to have an image of women in bikinis but that is such a small part of this video. Casey Neistat has become my favorite Youtuber and I never miss his videos and this was one of the first I had seen of his work a few years ago. He was asked by Nike to shoot a video titled “Make it Count” and Casey took the whole budget, bought plane tickets and traveled the world with his friend Max, until they ran out of money. It took them just 10 days to spend the whole ad budget traveling 34,000 miles, visiting 13 countries and 16 cities. The result is a four-and-a-half-minute film that now has over 26 million views.
Another beautifully photographed travel video by Harry Morris, Ryan Bance, and the Dfly team. Vanuatu was not even on my bucket list of places to travel but after watching this I’m ready to pack my bags.
Bolivia Salt Flats with Stephen & Jess
Stephen & Jess of Flying The Nest have become some of the top travel bloggers on youtube. I had the opportunity to meet them when they came to Seattle back in 2015 and it’s been great to watch their audience grow as they globetrot around the world. It was hard to pick a video of theirs to share, but this recent one is really fun around the 7 minute mark.
Freedom – Best Travel Inspiration Ever
This video may be tough and it might smack you upside the head when you watch it. The first 8 minutes uses some wonderful audio from Prince Ea which is both motivating but also introspective and forces us to look at the choices we each make. The video is a compilation of travel videos to inspire and motivate each of us.
How Beautiful the Mountains
This brings us to our final travel video that inspired this post. Eric works for CRISTA Ministries and this video combines all the elements of great cinematography, editing and story telling. Though it was filmed less as a travel video and more as a story, I felt this needed to be shared.
Bonus Video: Do What You Can’t
For those of you who are aspiring filmmakers, bloggers, and travel aficionados but have many doubts about whether people should hear your message or share in your adventures, this video is for you. Casey Neistat makes the case that just because you didn’t go to film school or you don’t look like a movie star, you can still make your mark in the world. Though he has many great videos, this one is the most inspiring.