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20 music videos that inspired us to travel

Brightly coloured mosaic steps

Back in the day, music videos were life, and to be honest, the good ones still are. Before we could Google and ‘Gram our way to the beauty of the world, some of our favourite artists were filming their music videos in locations we hadn’t even dreamt of. Even today, we’ll hop on YouTube and watch our faves from elementary school, and we always find new music videos to add to the rotation.

These 20 music videos never fail to awaken our wanderlust:

Britney Spears – Toxic

We’ve still never experienced dancing flight attendants or uniforms quite like Britney’s, but her Toxic opening sequence onboard a plane had us wishing we could share some airspace with our generation’s pop icon in 2003.

Sean Paul – Like Glue

In the height of Sean Paul’s radio reign, dancehall moves were what we secretly rehearsed in our rooms, just in time for our middle school dance. Although the video was actually filmed in Brooklyn, it made us yearn to go to a dancehall in Jamaica. We collectively fell in love with the Caribbean in 2002.

The Killers – Read My Mind

Our favourite desert dwellers fit in pretty damn well in Japan, and they made us want to try it for ourselves in 2007.

Major Lazer & DJ Snake feat. MØ — Lean On

We would erase MØ’s dancing from our memory permanently, but everything else made us want to go to India ASAP in 2015.

Snoop Dogg & Pharrell – Beautiful

This video in 2003 was probably the first time we saw Brazil and all of its beauty, and we knew from that moment that we had to get there and sit on those infamous steps at some point in our lives.

Linkin Park – Numb

Besides getting us through our teen angst years, Numb exposed us to the beauty of Prague in 2003.

Christina Aguilera, Lil’ Kim, Mya and P!nk – Lady Marmalade

Before we discovered the Moulin Rouge movie, Lady Marmalade added the Moulin Rouge and Paris to our bucket lists in 2001. We learned the words and perfected the choreo to become mini Moulin Rouge dancers. It was a simpler yet more scandalous time.

Michael Jackson – Remember the Time

We might have still been hooked on Sesame Street when this video came out in 1991, but it remains a classic ‘til this day, and you’d better believe we discovered it and fell in love with it (and Egypt) in the years to follow. With those classic MJ moves, combined with Egyptian costumes and imagery, we were all dying to be transported to a time when Iman and Eddie Murphy were Egyptian royalty.

98° – Give Me Just One Night

Back in the prime of our boy band days, we wanted nothing more than to be exploring Chichen Itza and wandering through the Day of the Dead parade with the 98° boys and their unbuttoned button ups. Mexico just seemed like the best place to be in the year 2000.

Taylor Swift – Wildest Dreams

Ignore the plot, casting and everything else that isn’t just gorgeous scenery and nature in the heaven that is Botswana. We didn’t need Taylor to make us want to visit Southern Africa, but she definitely helped remind us in 2014.

Shakira – Whenever, Wherever

Let’s be real, we all wanted to belly dance by the ocean, in the desert, amongst wild horses and in the mountains with Shakira in 2001. We’ve since learned that travelling barefoot in a bikini and low cut jeans is not ideal, but she made it look sexy anyways.

Coldplay – Hymn for the Weekend

We can thank Coldplay and Beyoncé for showing us the beauty of the Holi Festival and other stunning aspects of Indian life and culture in 2015.

Backstreet Boys – I Want It That Way

Airports, tarmacs and airplane hangars have never been as sexy as they were in 1999 with BSB. Even the airport escalators in this video made us yearn for some time at YYZ, but all of that airport romanticizing we did in our youth was quickly squashed when there were zero boy band concerts present during our first, or subsequent, airport trips.

Sheryl Crow – Soak up the Sun

In 2002, Sheryl made us all want to go surfing and chill out by stunning waterfalls in Hawaii.

Justin Bieber – I’ll Show You

Beliebers might not have been able to peel their eyes of the Biebs, but we were definitely intrigued and had to Google our way to realizing that Iceland was indeed his location of choice for this video in 2015. And what a beautiful choice it was…

Rihanna – If It’s Lovin’ That You Want

Windsurfing, jet skiing and make sandcastles may sound like a cheesy premise for a music video, but in 2005 baby Rihanna made us want to spend our days somewhere exotic and tropical, wearing blue eyeliner, gold bikinis and big earrings (although she was really only in Malibu for this video shoot).

Christina Aguilera – Genie in a Bottle

You may attribute your coastal beach house love to American Pie 2, but Christina Aguilera gave us our original fantasies two years prior in 1999. Nothing seemed cooler than renting a beach house, watching the sunset and having beach fires with our friends.

Foo Fighters – Learn to Fly

We’ve had some eventful flights in our lives, but none were quite as full of shenanigans and characters as the Foo Fighters made it seem to be. That’s probably for the best, as we don’t think a real-life citizen-lead landing would play out quite like it did in this video from 1999.

Vanessa Carlton – A Thousand Miles

A piano and wrist sweatbands wouldn’t be our first choice of carry-on items, but if we were magically floating around a thousand miles we only dreamt that we could do it with the poise of Vanessa Carlton in 2001.

Clean Bandit ft. Jess Glynne – Rather Be

The song of the summer became the video to give us Tokyo, Japan inspo in 2014.