Step in The Footprints of Dinosaurs: The Jurassic Destinations Behind The Upcoming Blockbuster
Movie and dinosaur fans alike will know that a popular movie will soon hit the big screen that’s set to be a celebration of the long-running dinosaur franchise. For many fans who have been waiting with bated breath after the movie’s delayed release, seeing it might also inspire a trip to get even closer to the action, even if unlikely to see the movie’s prehistoric stars!
According to our research, over a third (37%)* of global travelers are inspired to travel to a destination that was featured in a TV show or movie and for the majority (83%)* beautiful natural scenery is a factor in their destination decision - so filming destinations from this epic adventure are sure to stir the wanderlust. Before the blockbuster release, we share five destinations that are sure to delight dinosaur and movie lovers alike.
Kauai Island, Hawaii, United States
Kauai Island is the oldest and northernmost island in Hawaii and has been one of the main filming locations for the dinosaur franchise. Known as the Garden Island for its luscious emerald green valleys, Kauai is a paradise on earth that looks like a destination out of a dream. Featuring mountain spikes and jaw-dropping cliffs, the island is featured in the popular movies as the fictional remote Isla Nublar where the dramatic action takes place. Adrenalin junkies can embrace the action-packed scene with kayaking, snorkeling, and zip-lining to explore the incredible surroundings. Spanning seventeen miles, the magnificent Napali Coast features beautiful beaches and waterfalls and is a consistent filming location for the action-packed movie series. Visitors can take in the once-in-a-lifetime views from a boat tour on the Pacific Ocean and feel like they are really approaching prehistoric times when dinosaurs roamed the land, or perhaps they still do…
Where to stay: The Hanalei Colony Resort offers a luxury beach-front stay located on the famous Napali Coast, one of the most iconic and recognizable locations of the dinosaur movie. Featuring stunning rooms with ocean or garden views, explore the surrounding paradise by hiking or snorkeling, fishing and windsurfing to immerse yourself in the tropical beauty of the island.
Known as the ‘Fortress City,’ Malta’s historical capital is rich with history and blessed with impressive bastions, forts and cathedrals – and beautifully set with its city walls overlooking the picturesque Mediterranean Sea. In the upcoming movie, dinosaurs take over the urban capital in an exciting motorcycle chase through the old cobbled streets. Visitors can walk the alleyways leading to St George’s Square, home to baroque and neoclassical buildings, where Velociraptors are seen leaping over churches in the action-packed movie. Transport to ancient times with a Prehistoric Temples Tour for a fascinating exploration of Malta’s megalithic temples – older than Egypt’s pyramids. Travelers will also visit the Ghar Dalam cave and learn firsthand about the time when dinosaurs ruled the world, with its lowest layers containing fossils of creatures from over half a million years ago.
Where to stay: The stylish and elegant Embassy Valletta Hotel is a stunning stay featuring an incredible rooftop pool overlooking vast views of the city. Located near the popular Tigné Point Beach and Rock Beach, guests can enjoy a day relaxing on the seaside before returning to the hotel to enjoy the fantastic onsite restaurant and bar. A travel sustainable property, the hotel offers bike rental, tours and activities organized by local guides for visitors to explore the city.
Vancouver Island, Canada
While there might not be dinosaurs in residence at Vancouver Island (anymore), there is an abundance of local wildlife worth visiting. Found off Canada’s Pacific Coast, Vancouver Island is home to orcas, cougars, wolves, elk and black bears. It's not just the animal life that’s varied, with this 285 mile (460 km) long island home to snowy mountains, rugged coastlines strewn with remote beaches and enclaves and sweeping ancient forests. The eclectic scenery appealed to blockbuster locations scouts, with filming taking place around Cathedral Grove in MacMillan Provincial Park.
Where to stay: A short drive from the MacMillan Provincial Park, nestled in the forest but just a short walk to Qualicum Beach is Ashling Cottage. From this quaint and dog-friendly guest house, travelers can explore the nearby hiking trails and waterfalls and then relax on the sun deck soaking up the sounds of the surrounding forest and the cottage’s feathered friends. The cozy stay is a recommended secluded escape for travelers who are looking to unwind and relax.
New Orleans, Louisiana, United States
The abandoned Six Flags New Orleans theme park has played host to many big-budget movies, and was used as the skeleton for the most densely populated sections of the dinosaur movie’s titular park. The complex has been shuttered since Hurricane Katrina flooded the site, but crews have built a new version on the site’s massive parking lot. New Orleans boasts many reasons to visit, from its bustling nightlife and vibrant live music scene to its tasty local delicacies and distinct French architecture. Known as the ‘Big Easy,’ this travel destination packs a big punch! Travelers can learn more about the rich history and modern transformation of this iconic destination on a Garden District & Lafayette Cemetery Walking Tour, visiting the city’s oldest cemetery and above-ground tombs, and some top movie hotspots along the way.
Where to stay: Start the day right with a home cooked breakfast at Maison Perrier Bed & Breakfast. Located in the Garden District of the city just three blocks from St. Charles Avenue, this historic B&B is rich with its own movie-worthy history, having been built in 1892 by the owner of Jackson Brewery. Throughout, it boasts ornamental woodwork and beautiful antiques, a setting fit for the big screen.
Khon Kaen, Thailand
For franchise fans who would rather get close to the prehistoric beasts that inspire the blockbuster hits than its film sets, Khon Kaen should be next on the travel bucket list. This province in northeastern Thailand is home to one of the world’s biggest dinosaur graveyards. Phu Wiang National Park is best known for its numerous dinosaur bone paleontological sites and the park’s finds can be explored at the Phu Wiang Dinosaur Museum.
Where to stay: Just a short distance from the national park, Pruksa Garden Hotel offers comfortable and spacious accommodation options. After a busy day dinosaur-hunting and learning about the fossilized discoveries, travelers can refuel with delicious Thai food at the onsite restaurant.
*Research commissioned by Booking.com and independently conducted among a sample of 48,413 respondents across 31 markets (2,000 from USA, 1,864 from Canada, 1,999 from Mexico, 2,003 from Colombia, 2,005 from Brazil, 2,002 from Argentina, 1,020 from Chile, 1,777 from Australia, 818 from New Zealand, 1,999 from Spain, 2,002 from Italy, 1,998 from France, 1,990 from UK, 2,005 from Germany, 2,003 from Netherlands, 985 from Denmark, 999 from Sweden, 910 from Croatia, 918 from Switzerland, 1,986 from Belgium, 998 from Russia, 953 from Israel, 1,999 from India, 1,990 from China, 901 from Hong Kong, 1,775 from Thailand, 1,001 from Singapore, 975 from Taiwan, 1,800 from Vietnam, 1,757 from South Korea, 1,001 from Japan). In order to participate in this survey, respondents had to be 18 years of age or older, had to have traveled at least once for business or leisure in the past 12 months, and planning to travel in 2022 and be either the primary decision maker or involved in the decision making of their travel. The survey was taken online and took place in January 2022.