Skip to main content
Part of complete coverage on

Five of the best seaside film locations

By Emily Smith for CNN
October 20, 2011 -- Updated 1524 GMT (2324 HKT)
Koh Phi Phi in southern Thailand was the backdrop for the utopian existence featured in "The Beach". Koh Phi Phi in southern Thailand was the backdrop for the utopian existence featured in "The Beach".
HIDE CAPTION
'The Beach': Thailand
'The Talented Mr Ripley': Italy
'James Bond': Spain
'Blue Hawaii': Hawaii
'The Blue Lagoon': Jamaica
<<
<
1
2
3
4
5
>
>>
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Environmentalists were worried Thai beach Phi Phi Leh would be damaged during filming of "The Beach"
  • Positano was used as the inspiration for a fictional port in "The Talented Mr Ripley"
  • One of the most famous scenes of the modern James Bond franchise was filmed in Spain

(CNN) -- Some of the most iconic films ever made have used the ocean as their backdrop. Whether it's to highlight the romance of a moment, the isolation felt by characters or intense drama, filmmakers often turn to the seaside to help illustrate their story.

Here is a list of some of the best seaside locations featured on the silver screen.

THAILAND -- "THE BEACH"

Leonardo Dicaprio's character goes on a journey to find a secret idyllic Thai beach, where a sort of utopian society exists. For this filmmakers searched for paradise, eventually finding it near Phuket on the main beach of Phi Phi Leh Island, Hat Maya. Environmentalists voiced their opposition to using the beach during filming following concerns the area would be damaged. However production went ahead and since the release of "The Beach" Phi Phi Leh island has become a popular tourist destination for travelers wanting to experience utopia too.

ITALY -- "THE TALENTED MR RIPLEY"

Positano was used as the inspiration for the fictional port of Mongibello in "The Talented Mr Ripley". The stunning seaside town is set in the cliffs of Italy's Amalfi Coast and provided the stylish surroundings for the film, starring some of Hollywood's biggest names including Cate Blanchett, Matt Damon, Gwyneth Paltrow and Jude Law. Just a few hours south of Rome, Positano attracts Europe's rich and famous, eager to enjoy its fine dining restaurants and top hotels.

HAWAII -- "BLUE HAWAII"

Elvis Presley was no stranger to Hawaii. Three of his films were shot on the islands, none more famous or successful than the 1961 hit "Blue Hawaii". Set in the Hawaiian islands of Oahu and Kauai, the film highlighted the beauty of the area, with Presley playing a former Army officer-turned tour guide in the musical.

SPAIN -- "DIE ANOTHER DAY"

It's one of the most iconic scenes of the modern James Bond franchise: a bikini-clad Halle Berry emerges out of the water, meeting 007 himself. The encounter is set in Cuba however makers of "Die Another Day" in fact shot the scene in Cádiz, Spain. The historical coastal city is one of the oldest settlements in Western Europe.

JAMAICA -- "THE BLUE LAGOON"

"The Blue Lagoon" was shot in Port Antonino, Jamaica and on the privately owned island, Nanuya Levu, in Fiji in the South Pacific. The film tells the story of a young girl and boy being marooned on a desert island. It caused controversy at the time because of nude scenes which featured a teenage Brooke Shields.

ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT