4 Stunning Real-World Locations That Inspired Disney Movies

Photo by jean wimmerlin on Unsplash

As creative as the Disney studio team is, they also drew amazing inspiration from some of the most out-of-this-world locations around the globe. These are some of the destinations that inspired some of Disney’s immensely popular movies.  

Alsace, France 

The creators of Beauty and the Beast took two small villages, Riquewihr and Ribeauville, in France’s Alsace region as an inspiration for Belle’s small home town in the movie. All fans of the classic can visit this real-life destination and walk a mile in Belle’s pretty shoes! 

The Forbidden City 

Mulan lived during the Chinese Han Dynasty, somewhere between 200 BC and 200 AD. Although the Forbidden City was erected 1,200 years later, it served as an example for animators to design the Emperor’s residence. 


Most of the The Lion King takes place in a wide plain that’s closely reminiscent of Serengeti in Tanzania. This place is well-known as a check-point in animal migrations and, of course, for its large population of lions. 

Neuschwanstein Castle 

The beautiful Neuschwanstein Castle in Bavaria is the inspiration behind the Sleeping Beauty’s castle, which was later adapted into the famous Disney castle logo that appears at the beginning of every movie from this production.