Today the long-awaited travel flick Eat, Pray, Love hits theatres. Starring Julia Roberts, it is the recreation of Elizabeth Gilbert’s best-selling memoir about the trip of a lifetime. She cuts her threads loose and spends one year travelling abroad, rediscovering her sense of self in Italy, India and Indonesia. Although a veritable chick-flick, there is more to this film than just a romance story, the destinations are unbelievable!
Easily deemed the most popular travelogue for women of this century, Gilbert’s memoir is more than just about exotic destinations, indulgence, love and spirituality. It’s also about rediscovering one’s sense of self while travelling on your own. The book, and now the film, definitely gives travellers the inspiration to take the solo-trip they’ve been dying for and set out on a quest to reconnect on more than one level.
What’s the first thing that comes to mind when you think of a trip to Italy? The architecture, care-free and easily lovable locals, the sights and food… There are endless reasons why Italy is a great place to indulge your senses. As for Liz, the narrator in the novel, it’s where she resigns from her flaky big city diet and really enjoys everything on offer from gelato, pizza in Naples to the biggest plates of spaghetti in Rome. Don’t be embarrassed to undo the top button of your jeans, let yourself go and enjoy!
After embracing her love-handles, Liz heads to an ashram in India to explore her spiritual side. India is ideal for independent travellers looking to discover cultural extremes and a sense of balance. Temples, exotic and lush gardens, palaces, festivals and wildlife you’ve only ever seen in storybooks, India is completely addictive whether you’re an adventurer or a philosopher. Challenge yourself to sit still and breathe, slowing down the thoughts and revelling at what India has to offer!
It’s no secret among honeymooners that Indonesia’s islands are beautifully romantic, so where else would you go to fall in love than in Bali? With numerous resorts attracting visitors from around the globe, you’d think this place would have sold itself to tourism long ago. Discover the thriving night-life in Kuta, the relaxing strands of beaches in Amed, the artisan markets in Ubud and the effortless slow-paced life in Nusa. It’s easy to fall in love with a place like this, even if you’re doing it solo. Of course Liz also finds love and happiness on this beautiful island, the question is whether she can keep it once she leaves!
Has a book ever inspired you to travel? Which ones? For reading recommendations, check out our list of the best books to take on the road.
Img: NomadicLass / flickr cc