You don’t need us to tell you this, but things are bad right now. As it turns out, traveling gets hard when you can’t leave the house. Still, even in these trying times, there are a few activities that can cure our wanderlust. These include reading books, browsing Instagram feeds, and — of course — Netflix. More specifically, watching travel shows on Netflix.
Even in normal circumstances, travel TV offers much-needed escapism. In recent years, Netflix got the message and started producing a large number of these shows. This led to a deluge of travel-related content and navigating it became tough.
Looking for suggestions? You’ve come to the right place! Here is a list of 9 of the best travel shows on Netflix you have to check out.
Best Travel Shows on Netflix
1. Street Food
From the creators of Chef’s Table, this series swaps the formal setting for the streets. The first season of Street Food takes us to Asia, as we travel through Japan, Taiwan, Singapore, and so on. All episodes clock in at close to 30 minutes.
During our travels, we find out how each country treats its street vendors. The series enjoys taking its time in letting these vendors tell their stories. Each episode notes the personal connection between the food and the people who make it.
2. Ugly Delicious
Ugly Delicious is a lot of things, but it’s a travel show at heart. Now in its second season, the David Chang-hosted series is better than ever. The show consists of Chang traveling the world and discussing life, culture, and anything else he thinks of.
The show’s main drawing point is its complete lack of pretense. Chang meets a lot of celebrities on his travels, but the show remains pleasantly grounded. The second season takes us from Tokyo and Istanbul to Outback Steakhouse.
3. Somebody Feed Phil
Do you enjoy Everybody Loves Raymond? Even if you’re not a fan, check out its hilarious creator Phil Rosenthal in this documentary. Throughout the show, Rosenthal eats his way through Lisbon, Bangkok, Tel Aviv, and other lovely places.
One great thing about Somebody Feed Phil is its optimistic nature. Though there’s a clear focus on food, the show is also about Rosenthal’s trip of discovery. With all the stress around us, the positive vibes this show provides are priceless.
4. Tales by Light
Most great documentaries depend on their photographers. Unfortunately, they often get left out of the spotlight while they’re looking for those perfect shots. Tales by Light aims to rectify that by focusing on the photographers themselves.
In each episode, we follow one photographer taking us along on their journey. Throughout their quest, they cover the most interesting corners of our planet. As luck would have it, the photographers are also among the best in the world.
5. Conan Without Borders
If you want to get technical, this is less of a travel show and more of a collection of travel segments. Still, this doesn’t mean it’s not worth your time. While consistently entertaining, Conan Without Borders can tackle serious topics as well.
Of course, the main appeal of the show is the host himself. If you find road trip documentaries a bit dry, Conan O’Brien is the perfect person to inject some variety. As one of the funniest men on TV, Conan has little trouble getting people to open up.
Out of all the shows on our list, this is the only one you don’t need Netflix for. That said, Netflix is still the easiest way to enjoy it. If you need help setting it up, here’s how you can download Netflix on Mac.
6. Travels with My Father
Speaking of comedians traveling the world, that list keeps getting bigger. Travels with My Father is one of the more successful entries, featuring Jack Whitehall and his dad, Michael. Imagine traveling with your parents, and you’ll get the show’s appeal.
Throughout its 13 episodes, the pair goes on a series of unlikely adventures. They visit Angkor Wat, Chernobyl, and a Thai full moon party. The moments in-between are even better, as they keep forcing each other out of their comfort zones.
7. Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner
Haven’t had enough of David Chang? If so, this 4-part series will make for a great binge watch on a lazy Sunday afternoon. In each episode, Chang visits one of his celebrity friends and dives into their local food scenes.
The supporting cast of Breakfast, Lunch & Dinner includes Seth Rogen, Chrissy Teigen, Lena Waithe, and Kate McKinnon. The show itself is a little less dialed-in than Ugly Celebrities, but it’s still quite fun. The influence of the late Anthony Bourdain is on full display.
8. Our Planet
If you consider yourself a traditionalist, you likely want more Planet Earth. Well, Our Planet is the closest thing you can find on Netflix. Narrated by Attenborough and produced by BBC, this show breathes new life into a nature series format.
Much like Planet Earth, Our Planet is one of the best-received documentaries out there. It’s easy to see why: the show’s vast scope takes us from the Arctic tundra to the deepest oceans. If this doesn’t scratch your travel itch, nothing will!
9. The Kindness Diaries
When it comes to Netflix documentaries, strange premises are par the course. In this one, host Leon Logothetis travels the world without a dime. To get by, he relies on the kindness of strangers for gas, food, shelter, and other necessities.
In lesser hands, The Kindness Diaries would seem wonky and unconvincing. Fortunately, Logothetis gets by with the right combination of charisma and people skills. This is another show that explores our humanity through travel.
More Travel Shows on Netflix
If you run out of stuff to binge, there are many good shows we haven’t mentioned. For instance, The Dawn Wall is a story of two free climbers trying to scale a 3,000-foot rock face.
Chances are, watching some of these travel shows on Netflix will inspire you to start preparing for your own trip.
Need more travel inspiration?
- 10 Best Travel Movies That Inspire Wanderlust
- 45 of the Best Travel Books That Inspire Wanderlust
- Travel Goals: 100 Things to Do Before You Die!