Can't travel? No problem, these Netflix shows are perfect for any armchair traveller

·5-min read

If you’re anything like me and have been venturing outdoors and to nature reserves just to scratch that ‘travel’ itch, you’ll know wanderlust is real.

While international leisure travel may not be possible this year, there’s always entertainment programmes on Netflix to escape the coronavirus news and the stress of avoiding crowds.

Here are some shows we think can bring you the joy of travel from your couch for any types of traveller.

Expedition Happiness. (PHOTO: Netflix)
Expedition Happiness. (PHOTO: Netflix)

The backpacker

If you don’t mind hitch-hiking to get from A to B; prefer hostels over hotels; like to stay nimble and delight in the local street food; and free walking tours, you should watch:

Expedition Happiness: Two free spirits, one dog. Travelling the vast spaces of an enormous continent in search of something more.

Jack Whitehall: Travels with my Father: Jovial comic Jack Whitehall and his stuffy father, Michael, take unusual and amusing trips to foreign lands in an attempt to strengthen their bond.

You vs. Wild. (PHOTO: Netflix)
You vs. Wild. (PHOTO: Netflix)

The thrill-seeker

You jump at the chance to leave the city behind and trade in your heels for some hiking boots. Everest Base Camp and Machu Picchu are at the top of your bucket list and no trip is complete without some sensible Kathmandu gear. You should watch:

Win The Wilderness: Six couples compete to prove they've got the survival skills to win the deed to an extraordinary home deep in the vast, rugged wilderness of Alaska.

You vs Wild (Interactive Series): An interactive series where you can make key decisions to help Bear Grylls survive, thrive and complete missions in the harshest environments on Earth.

Pedal the World: Over the course of one memorable and adventure-filled year, Felix Starck documents his 18,000-kilometre bicycle journey across 22 countries.

Selling Sunset. (PHOTO: Netflix)
Selling Sunset. (PHOTO: Netflix)

The Luxury traveller

Exclusive staycations in villas overlooking the sea? Looking up and bookmarking hotels and spas for when you can finally hop back on a plane? You should watch:

Million Dollar Beach House: The competition is fierce — and the drama undeniable — as a group of young and hungry agents try to seal the deal on luxury listings in the Hamptons.

The World’s Most Extraordinary Homes: Join architecture aficionados Piers and Caroline for another tour of amazing homes around the world in India, Israel, Norway and Spain.

Instant Hotel: Four new pairs of home hoteliers check-in and check out each other's properties as they compete for the title of Australia's best vacation rental.

Selling Sunset: The elite real estate brokers at The Oppenheim Group sell the luxe life to affluent buyers in LA. The drama ramps up when a new agent joins the team.

Cabins in the Wild: Engineer Dick Strawbridge and craftsman Will Hardie tour eight unique cabins built for a pop-up hotel in Wales, and construct No. 9 on their own.

Corals create the structures that provide food and shelter on which the entire community depends.  Heron Island, Great Barrier Reef, Australia
Corals create the structures that provide food and shelter on which the entire community depends. Pictured here is Heron Island, Great Barrier Reef, Australia, which is featured in Our Planet. (PHOTO: Netflix)

The Eco-Warrior

Your apartment is starting to look like a scene from The Jungle Book, David Attenborough is your spirit animal, and you are constantly saving insects from precarious situations. You should watch:

Our Planet: Eight-part documentary series from the creators of Planet Earth provides a never-before-filmed look at the planet’s remaining wilderness areas and their animal inhabitants, filmed in 50 countries across all the continents of the world. Narrated by Sir David Attenborough.

Chasing Coral: Divers, scientists and photographers around the world mount an epic underwater campaign to document the disappearance of coral reefs.

Birders: Bird watchers on both sides of the U.S.-Mexico border share their enthusiasm for protecting and preserving some of the world's most beautiful species.

Tales by Light. (PHOTO: Netflix)
Tales by Light. (PHOTO: Netflix)

The Culture Junkie

You’d rather spend time amongst locals than at crowded landmarks, and you're constantly in search of the road less travelled. You should watch:

Tales by Light: Behind every powerful image is a powerful story. Uniting exploration, photography and the natural world, Tales By Light follows photographers from Australia and around the world as they push the limits of their craft.

Conan Without Borders: Late-night talk show host Conan O’Brien hits the road in this special that brings him and his sense of humour to far-flung destinations.

Ugly Delicious. (PHOTO: Netflix)
Ugly Delicious. (PHOTO: Netflix)

The Foodie

You’ve booked your table at a destination restaurant before the plane ticket; your highlight is always when you get to try the authentic cuisine; and your souvenirs are jars of local produce. You should watch:

Restaurants on the Edge: Three food and design experts travel the world to revive failing restaurants by connecting them to the local culture beyond their gorgeous views.

Ugly Delicious: All the flavour. None of the BS, star Chef David Chang leads friends on a mouthwatering, cross-cultural hunt for the world’s most satisfying grub.

Street food Latin America: Latin American chefs tell their stories and bring a taste of tradition and innovation to their delicious offerings.

Million Pound Menu: A new slate of food entrepreneurs who are determined to open up their own restaurants pitch delicious concepts to a panel of choosy investors.

If you’re looking for more programmes to satiate your wanderlust, try using these tips below (you’re welcome!). Just search for:

  1. Luxury travel show

  2. Travel and adventure documentaries

  3. Food and travel

  4. European travel and adventure

  5. Street food