If adventure has a name, it must be Indiana Jones! Yes, Henry Jones. Jr. is, hands down, one of the most revered fictional characters from all time. Adventure, romance, paranormal sci-fi, and some of the most stunning locations on Earth blend together in a perfect mix of thrilling quests that have taken good ol’ Indy from all over the planet. Want to join us on a daring trek throughout some of the best Indiana Jones places you can actually visit during your vacation? Then get your whip ready and don’t forget your hat. Remember…X marks the spot!
Raiders of the Lost Ark: Kauai, Hawaii
Latin America is heavily featured in many Indiana Jones movies, being Indy’s memorable introduction making his way through the thick Peruvian jungle during the first scenes of Raiders of The Lost Ark the most iconic example. Appearances, however, can be deceiving…and when it comes to Hollywood, that’s most likely the case! The outdoor scenes of that specific part of the movie were shot in Hawaii, more specifically at the gorgeous Hule’ia National Wildlife Refuge located at the “Garden Island” of Kauai. Fans who take flights to Honolulu (or directly to Kauai) will undoubtedly be on the lookout for the spot that was the legendary last-second runaway from the giant stone boulder at the Hovito temple took place. Although visits are quite restricted in an effort to preserve the local bird population, many tour guides will gladly show you the locations where the myth of Indiana Jones was born…and then some. Feeling like swing-rope your way over the Huleia river like Indy did when he was chased by the angry tribesmen? Well, you can! An experience that no fan should miss.
The Temple of Doom: Kandy, Sri Lanka
Did you know that, even if the vast majority of Indiana Jones’ second movie (which is, if you didn’t know, a prequel!) takes place in India, Steven Spielberg couldn’t film there? That’s right, the Indian government was so offended by many of the misleading stereotypes portrayed in the film (chilled monkey brains, anyone?) that the director had to find similar backgrounds at nearby Sri Lanka. Close enough, right? It proved to be a wise decision though. The breathtaking beauty of this island nation’s jungles and bodies of water is undeniable, as we could fully enjoy during the exciting conclusion of the movie when Indiana Jones fight the acolytes of the Thugee cultist Mola Ram over a flimsy rope bridge. Wouldn’t be cool to cross that same river machete-in-hand as Harrison Ford did? You bet. Thing is, it was destroyed at some point after the production was finished. But don’t despair just yet. Just 1-hour car ride away from the city of Kandi, the impressive Victoria Dam stands as a magnificent engineering feat from where it’s possible to admire the same 300-feet gorge where Harrison Ford saved the day if you manage to access its top. But there’s more. If you have time and don’t fear to explore off the beaten tracks, you might actually come across two vestigial concrete pillar beams that prove the existence of the condemned bridge.
You May Also Like: 5 Must See Places from Game of Thrones
The Last Crusade: Al Khazneh, Jordan
Probably the most famous Indiana Jones place ever, the utterly majestic Al Khazneh located in the ancient archaeological site of Petra is one of Jordan’s most precious (and visited!) temples. No wonder it was chosen as the setting where Indiana Jones and his dad (spoiler alert!) finally find the fabled Holy Grail and manage to defeat the Nazis at The Last Crusade‘s memorable climax. Named one of the New 7 Wonders of the World in 2007, Al Khaznez’s cinematic appeal has been key prompting thousands of Indy fans and history buffs alike have been heading to Jordan during the last few decades. Although the interior scenes were filmed elsewhere, a visit to Petra is definitely something that any Indiana Jones geek should do. You will find no shortage of tour guides to show you the movie locations. For the ultimate fan experience, you can actually ride a horse through the same canyon where Harrison Ford and the rest of the cast marveled at the imposing façade of The Treasure (which is what Al Khazneh means) for the first time. No better way to feel like being inside the movie!
The Kingdom of the Crystal Skull: Iguazu Falls, Brazil / Argentina
End of the road. We wrap our search for fame and glory with one of the most beautiful places ever portrayed in any Indy movie: the Iguazu Falls, a stunning natural treasure so big that it actually serves as a border between Argentina and Brazil. In The Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, we can see the full might of the digitally enhanced waterfall when our heroes prepare for a really, really long fall. If you’re visiting, you might wonder: which side is better? Well, it depends. Foz do Iguaçu, in Brazil, is your best bet if you feel brave enough to book a helicopter flight to admire this wonderful landscape from the skies. Entrance to Iguazú Falls National Park is also slightly cheaper from here. On the other hand, Puerto Iguazú, in Argentina, is the place to go to enjoy the best walking routes and the famous lookout Garganta del Diablo, as well as to hop on a boat tour that will take you really close to the real thing. Finally, some people choose to admire Iguazu’s magnificence from nearby Paraguay. Regardless of where you are, prepare to be wowed!
Are there any other Indiana Jones places you know? Share it with us in our comments section below!