22 Foreign Ambassadors Recommend the Best Books to Read and Movies to Watch Before Visiting Their Countries!

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I remember reading Into the Wild while flying to Alaska on one of my first solo trips far from home.  It really set the stage for my adventure!  It made me want to take off and travel to discover myself the same way Christopher McCandless did (minus the tragic ending, of course).

So I was excited to come across this list of book and movie recommendations for various countries, including Chile, Germany, Finland, India, and more!

What Better Way to Prep for a Trip Than to Read a Celebrated Book About the Country You Plan to Visit

Here’s the list of recommendations by 22 different foreign ambassadors in Washington, DC.

1.   Austria

Read:   The Tobacconist by Robert Seethaler

Watch:   The Third Man, 1949

2.   Azerbaijan

Read:   Ali and Nino by Kurban Said

Watch:   The film adaptation of Ali and Nino

3.   Bhutan

Read:   Treasures of the Thunder Dragon: A Portrait of Bhutan by Ashi Dorji Wangmo Wangchuck

Watch:   Travellers and Magicians, 2003

4.   Canada

Read:   With Faith and Goodwill: 150 years of Canada-U.S. Friendship, edited by Arthur Milnes

Watch:   Any of the films from National Canadian Film Day’s Top 150 which the ambassador says “provides a list as diverse as the country itself.”

5.   Chile

Read:   La Casa de los Espíritus by Isabel Allende

Watch:   No, 2012

6.   Colombia

Read:   One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel García Márquez

Watch:   Colombia Magia Salvaje, 2015

7.   Denmark

Read:   Smilla’s Sense of Snow by Peter Høeg

Watch:   A Royal Affair, 2012

8.   Estonia

Read:   The Man Who Spoke Snakish by Andrus Kivirähk

Watch:   Lotte and the Moonstone Secret, 2011

9.   Finland

Read:   Moomin books by Tove Jansson

Watch:   Tale of a Forest, 2012

10.   Germany

Read:   Tschick (Why we took the car) by Wolfgang Herrndorf

Watch:   Good Bye Lenin!, 2003

11.   Greece

Read:   Freedom and Death by Nikos Kazantzakis

Watch:   Zorba the Greek, 1964

12.   Iceland

Read:   Independent People by Halldór Laxness

Watch:   Sigur Rós: Heima, 2007

13.   Ireland

Read:   TransAtlantic by Colum McCann

Watch:   Once, 2007

14.   India

Read:   Freedom at Midnight by Dominique Lapierre and Larry Collins

Watch:   Monsoon Wedding, 2001

15.   Jamaica

Read:   Selected Poems by Louise Bennett

Watch:   Cool Runnings, 1993

16.   Malta

Read:   In the Name of the Father (And of the Son) by Immanuel Mifsud

Watch:   Limestone Cowboy, 2017

17.   Netherlands

Read:   The Embarrassment of Riches by Simon Schama

Watch:   De Aanslag, 1986

18.   New Zealand

Read:   The Whale Rider by Witi Ihimaera

Watch:   Hunt for the Wilderpeople, 2016

19.   Norway

Read:   The Harry Hole series by Jo Nesbø

Watch:   Kon-Tiki, 2012

20.   Slovenia

Read:   I Saw Her That Night, by Drago Jančar

Watch:   Valley of Peace, 1956

21.   Sweden

Read:   Nordic Ways by András Simonyi

Watch:   A Man Called Ove, 2015

22.   United Kingdom

Read:   Atonement by Ian McEwan

Watch:   Life of Brian, 1979

Have you read any of these books?  What have been your favorite books to read before traveling to a certain destination?

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Hat Tip:   Babbel

Meghan Hunter is an editor for Million Mile Secrets. She covers points, miles, credit cards, airlines, hotels and general travel. Her work has also appeared in The Points Guy.

Editorial Note: We're the Million Mile Secrets team. And we're proud of our content, opinions and analysis, and of our reader's comments. These haven’t been reviewed, approved or endorsed by any of the airlines, hotels, or credit card issuers which we often write about. And that’s just how we like it! :)

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