Summer is finally here (even if it's not always showing it) and so plenty of us are looking for the best ways to enjoy the weather. Whether it be sunbathing in the garden, an ice cream by the Thames or a rooftop bar we're always looking to make the most of the sun. A new trend that has swept the nation and, indeed, the world are outdoor cinemas. A hat-tip to the drive-ins of old, these cinemas occupy some truly stunning spaces and here's the pick of our favourites.
Montjuic Castle, Barcelona
An old military fortress with features dating back as far as the 1600s, Montjuic Castle stands tall on it's namesake hill in Catalonia. Accessible by cable car, the castle grounds are an imposing sight and make for an intriguing day out. A real treat for any stay in Barcelona, you can tour the castle before settling down for a film out in the open air to round off your evening. All of which for a mere 10 Euros which makes for a cheap, fulfilling day out in this beautiful city. Bring your dinner and take in a short concert before the main feature on a giant screen at the castle's moat.
Film Festival am Wiener Rathausplatz, Vienna
Running for over 25 years, this cultural festival is completely free to the public and offers a great variety of entertainment for locals, nationals and tourists alike. From ballet and opera to dance and jazz concerts, there's plenty of Austrian culture to go around. A visit here will also bring with it an excellent selection of international food to be sampled. This massive, open-planned setting makes for an incredible sight, especially when full, undoubtedly because of the impressive structure of City Hall perching behind the big screen.
Screen on the Green, Washington, DC
One of the most dramatic settings you'll see for a cinema, the big screen here is overlooked by the imposing figure of the White House, illuminated by the lights, at the National Mall. Catering to masses of movie-goers, it has become a summer tradition in Washington, DC and the Capitol Region and will attract eager viewers who are keen to set down their blankets to claim their spot. Featuring a number of classics, the screen is in full use on Monday nights when weather permits.
Sotto Le Stelle Del Cinema, Bologna
Spanning an impressive 50 days over the summer period, the Sotto Le Stelle Del Cinema boasts a rich programme of restored classics and a selection of interesting new releases. Screening times start late in the evening at around 10pm, allowing for a leisurely evening in beautiful Bologna beforehand. Surrounded by some superb examples of stunning architecture, taking in the evening here will be a truly memorable experience. With thousands heading for this event every year, you'll be in excellent company should you choose here to catch a flick.
St George Open Air Cinema, Sydney
A stunning addition to a trip to Sydney, you'll enjoy a wonderful panoramic view of the city's skyline lit up in defiance against the night sky. Of course, you'll also have a front row seat to see the Opera House and the Harbour Bridge in all their beauty. Starting in the early evening, guests are encouraged to wind down at the harbourside bar and restaurant for a spot of wining and dining as the sun sets, making for a complete evening. Featuring new, blockbuster releases, previews and even arthouse, the films on offer span a vast number of different genres, ensuring there's plenty to interest everyone.