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A good musical will make you want to sing, dance, laugh, cry and…travel? Naturally. Some of the world’s most vibrant cities and cultures inspired its most most popular theater acts. These musical destinations are calling (or singing) your name:


Chicago: ‘Chicago’

Kick off your travels with a city so great—and so infamously gritty—that they wrote an entire musical about it. But things have changed since Chicago’s Prohibition-era storyline, and the city’s feel is now more classically midwestern friendly than crime-ridden, thanks to the store-lined Michigan Avenue and the bars and music venues of neighborhoods like Wicker Park and Lincoln Park. And because of that famous midwestern sensibility, you can soak it all in—and see the show—without breaking the bank.

London: ‘Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street’

Okay, yes, London has inspired some of the most famous musicals ever produced—and plenty of them. But Sweeny Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street is a new classic, capturing the city’s dark humor and history. Have a spooky, Sweeny Todd-inspired adventure on the cheap while exploring London’s ghost-filled past, haunted buildings and ancient theaters, which are some of the oldest in the world.

Austria: ‘The Sound of Music’

Come see the hills that are alive with The Sound of Music! Although Hollywood glamorized the family’s famous escape from the Nazis—the “hills” were actually more like railroad tracks, reported The History Channel—Austria is still a beautiful country nonetheless, and those beautiful Alps are definitely there, whether the Von Trapps crossed them or not. The city of Salzburg, too, has become a popular tourist spot, where you can see the Von Trapps’ home and other film locations.

Greece: ‘Mamma Mia!’

While ABBA’s music inspired Mamma Mia!, Greece’s obvious natural beauty will inspire you to leave your comfort zone—or your hometown—behind. While any Greek island would be an amazing trip, Skopelos (or Kalokairi, as the play renamed it) is located on the beautiful Aegean Sea. Go see for yourself what everyone was singing about, and you might just burst into song yourself.

Thailand: ‘The King and I’

Here’s an exotic destination for your theater-inspired bucket list: Thailand. You’ll feel like Anna while exploring Eastern culture and this vibrant country, a la The King and I. You may also feel like you won the lottery—Bangkok is both world-renowned and decidedly cheap, despite all the bustle and luxury. If you like taking rides atop elephants, visiting ancient ruins and poking through floating markets, Rodgers and Hammerstein’s Thailand is calling your name.

Africa: ‘The Lion King’

Although originally inspired by Shakespeare’s Hamlet, this musical weaves motifs of power and identity into the African landscape instead of Denmark. While you probably won’t see any lions or hyenas singing a little tune, you can see them wander the bush freely in destinations like Kenya and South Africa. Meaning you’ll have some killer photos to make your Instagram followers jealous.

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Tagged: Beach, City, International, Music

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Alexander Santo

Alexander Santo

Alexander Santo

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