Beautiful Aussie Films That’ll Inspire You To Travel Your Own Backyard
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We Aussies are totally spoilt, with natural wonders galore, incredible coastlines, spectacular bushland, charming small towns, and cities brimming with culture, all in our backyard.
So it’s little wonder that Australia has inspired so many iconic films.
A recent report from Screen Australia estimated at 230,000 tourists visit or extend their stay in Australia each year as a result of viewing Australian and film TV content, pumping around $725 million into the local economy.
So, if you’re searching for a little inspiration to get out and discover your own backyard? Start by exploring the real-life filming locations of these five iconic Australian flicks.
#1 Storm Boy (2019)
Based on the Colin Thiele novel of the same name, the Storm Boy movie re-make follows the story of a young boy growing up on the coastline of South Australia.
The film was shot along the Coorong National Park, about an hour outside Adelaide in South Australia, but isn’t just famous for being the setting of Storm Boy – its unspoilt coastline and abundance of wildlife has made it one of South Australia’s most-visited destinations.
The Coorong is located at the end of the Murray River, where it meets the Southern Ocean and stretches around 200kms to Kingston in the southeast of the state.
While you’re there, visit Coorong National Park. There’s loads to do, like camping on the edge of the wild ocean, kayaking in The Coorong’s many lagoons, exploring the sand dunes, 4WD-ing, bird-watching, and fishing – or simple kick back and soak up the sights.
#2 Mad Max (1979)
The 1979 dystopian action film Mad Max was shot in and around Melbourne. Many of the car chase scenes for the film were shot near the town of Little River in northeast Geelong.
Victoria’s Princes Freeway took passing traffic away from Little River, and today it’s completely untouched by suburban sprawl – a charming station township surrounded by fields, the river and the You Yangs mountain range.
This metro-escape is just a 45-minute drive or train ride from Melbourne an easy stopover on your way down the Bellarine Peninsula or Great Ocean Road.
#3 Red Dog (2011)
Red Dog, the 2011 comedy-drama based on the novel of the same name, follows the story of one amazing doggo and the impact he had on a local Aussie community.
The story of Red Dog was originally set in the Pilbara region of Western Australia, but due to prohibitive costs of shooting in outback WA, the film ended up being shot in a dusty caravan park about an hour north of Adelaide.
With the help of some movie magic – and 14 truckloads of red sand – the site was transformed to look like the Western Australian outback.
But, if you thought it looked impressive on screen, it doesn’t hold a candle to the real thing.
Western Australia’s Pilbara region is home to Karijini National Park – Western Australia’s second largest park. Here, you can explore cavernous, ancient gorges, scale some of the oldest rocks on the planet, paddle in crystal-clear waterways, and cool off with a swim beneath cascading waterfalls.
The park is home to an amazing network of walking trails, ranging from easy to challenging, which wind through some of Australia’s most drool-worthy scenery.
#4 Bran Nue Dae (2009)
The 2009 feel-good musical Brand Nue Dae tells the story of the coming-of-age of an Indigenous Australian teen on a road trip in the late ‘60s. Between incredible musical numbers and choreographed dances, Brand Nue Dae showcases the beautiful Western Australian town of Broome, where it was set.
You’ll find the beach resort town in Australia’s Kimberly region, and it’s home to some of Australia’s most sought-after scenery. The first thing (or at least high up) on your Broome bucket list has to be experiencing a Western Australian sunset at Cable Beach. The falling of the golden sun disappearing into water is one of those sights you’ll simply never forget.
#5 The Sapphires (2004)
The Sapphires – the musical-comedy based on the 2004 stage play of the same name – follows the stories of four Indigenous Australian women who were discovered by a talent scout and formed into a girl group sent to sing for the troops during the Vietnam war.
The film was set and filmed in Albury, NSW, and its surrounding towns Corowa, Howlong, Culcairn, Henty and Morven.
Albury is often passed over as a much-needed stop for sleepy-eyed drivers on their way from Sydney or Melbourne, but this town has certainly proved itself as more than just a place to crash.
It’s quickly becoming one of the best regional towns in NSW for a weekend getaway. It’s home to a brand-new modern art gallery in the town’s centre, a beautiful botanic garden and is just a short drive from Murray River Trail – a track connecting some of NSW’s most sought-after natural wonders.
Don’t waste another weekend away at home, get out there and explore your own backyard with Qantas. Find great domestic fares at qantas.com, with food, Qantas Points, and checked baggage included in your Qantas ticket.*
*Inclusions vary on selected flights.
(Lead image: Storm Boy / Screen Australia)