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And the winner is...

Movies are often a source of travel inspiration and it’s the award-winning silver screen favourites that can most make us yearn to head away.

Peter Jackson’s Lords of the Rings trilogy inspired travel to New Zealand and the country’s tourism board embraced the films by marketing itself as the “Home of Middle Earth”. And what visit to Philadelphia would be complete without the obligatory Rocky pose on top of the steps of the Philadelphia Museum of Art?

With the 86th Academy Awards (or ‘Oscars’) taking place on Sunday the 2nd of March, we thought it would be a perfect time for the Flexicover Team to take a look at some of the movies nominated for Best Picture and where they may inspire you to travel.

Wolf of Wall Street - New York City

Leonardo DiCaprio once again teamed up with director Martin Scorsese, having previously worked together on no less than 5 films (including the 2006 Best Picture winner The Departed). The film charts the rise and fall of stockbroker Jordan Belfort, who cheated his clients out of millions of dollars, turned in his friends in order to save his own skin and was eventually jailed for securities fraud and money laundering. The focus is on the financial district of New York City and, as one of the world’s great cities, it has an abundance of great attractions. Whilst the must-see landmarks include Times Square, Empire State Building, Central Park and the New York Stock Exchange, your visit won’t be complete without the experience of the 360º city views at the Top of the Rock at Rockefeller Center!

Captain Phillips - Malta

Tom Hanks plays the title role in this adaptation of the true story when, in 2009, the Maersk Alabama was hijacked by Somali pirates and Captain Robert Phillips struggled to keep himself and his crew alive. The film has been nominated for 6 awards including Best Picture and Best Supporting Actor for newcomer Barkhad Abdi playing the pirate leader Abduwali Muse. Should you wish to stick close to home in order to channel the maritime vibe, most of the filming took place on and around the pretty Mediterranean island of Malta. Take a sailing trip around the island and experience the clear blue waters for yourself whilst exploring hidden beaches, caves and inlets. Then, back on dry land, visit the beautiful ancient town of Mdina, often known as the ‘Silent City’ due to its quiet surroundings, mazes of narrow, cobbled streets, beautiful architecture and steeped in over 3,000 years of history!

Philomena - Ireland & Washington, D.C.

Judi Dench and Steve Coogan star in this adaptation of the 2009 investigative book by BBC correspondent Martin Sixsmith – The Lost Child of Philomena Lee. It charts the efforts of Philomena who, with the help of Sixsmith, sets off in search of the son taken away from her 50 years before when she was forced to live in a convent after falling pregnant out of wedlock – something her Irish Catholic community didn't approve of. If you want to replicate the journey, start out in Ireland and, although in real life this story began in County Tipperary, Killyleagh, Rostrevor and the stunning Mourne Mountains in County Down were used in filming. If the US part of her journey is more what you’re after, make your way to Washington, D.C., to take in sites like the Washington Memorial and stroll down the National Mall, a tree-and-museum-lined park that stretches from the U.S. Capitol Building to the Lincoln Memorial.

Her - Shanghai

Set in a near-future Los Angeles, Theodore Twombly (Joaquin Phoenix) writes personal letters for people with difficulties expressing their feelings. In order to get through his own life, he invests in a state-of-the-art new computer system with the apparent ability to learn and grow with its user. This interesting twist on man's love affair with technology will have keen-eyed viewers realising the film merges locations in the real City of Angels and the Pudong business district of Shanghai, home to some of the highest densities of modern skyscrapers in the world. If you do visit Shanghai, the waterfront boulevard known as the Bund is an ideal spot for photos of the famous skyline and best shows both the city's pre-1949 past and its focus on the future. In the morning the Bund is full of people ballroom dancing, doing aerobics and practicing tai chi. The rest of the day, people walk the embankment, snapping photos of the Oriental Pearl Tower, the Huangpu River and each other.

Gravity - Florida

Gravity is a visual epic staring Sandra Bullock as Dr Ryan Stone, a medical engineer on her first shuttle mission, and George Clooney as veteran astronaut Matt Kowalsky commanding his final expedition. During a routine spacewalk, disaster strikes, leaving the two astronauts completely alone and spiralling out into the depths of space with an ever-diminishing supply of oxygen and no communication with Mission Control. Whilst it’s not quite possible for us to visit space (yet), there are places where you can see some real space technology yourself. Cape Canaveral in Florida is the home of the Kennedy Space Center, the hub of the American space program. Explore NASA's launch headquarters, featuring more than 60 interactive experiences including the Space Shuttle Atlantis exhibit which opened last year to showcase the legendary spacecraft. You’ll also be able to experience the sensation of floating in space and strap in to a simulator to experience the sights, sounds and sensations of a shuttle launch!

Wherever you head in pursuit of your interest, at Flexicover we are committed to providing you the highest level of protection to ensure that you are safe and secure, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year when away.

If you are travelling soon, have a great trip!