Michael Palin: Travels of a Lifetime - 31 December 2020 - 31/12/2020 - Thursday - BBC Two - TV Everyday

Michael Palin: Travels of a Lifetime – 31 December 2020 – 31/12/2020 – Thursday – BBC Two

Series 1 Episode 4 of 4

Michael revisits his fourth – and in some ways, most personal – travel series. Inspired by the apparent emptiness of the Sahara Desert as seen from a flight and by boyhood dreams of exploration, Michael sets off to find out what this ‘blank space’ contains. He is delighted and inspired by the societies he encounters there – nomads, refugees, artists. He also confronts some harsh realities – the effects of war, the migrant crisis and the rise of militant Islam. From Gibraltar, Michael looks across the Mediterranean to what is for him a mysterious land – north Africa.

Arriving in Fez, Morocco, Michael finds himself immersed in an ancient city that seems to hark back to biblical times. Then, it is across the Atlas Mountains to confront the great desert itself. Here, Michael encounters the more modern reality of this land in the Smara refugee camp, home to displaced people from western Sahara. Then he sets his sights on one of the most alluring destinations of all – Timbuktu, the city that has fascinated so many travellers down the centuries. It is a challenging trip, but Michael makes it, and while the reality of the place doesn’t quite match his image, he learns about its extraordinary history and culture.

Further on, an encounter with a tribe nearly ends in disaster when a gun goes off in Michael’s face. But another tribe, the Wodaabe, prove fascinating and friendly as Michael sees the men perform an extraordinary dance to attract a bride. And with the Touareg nomads, Michael experiences a magical trek into deep desert as part of a camel train – a journey that allows him to make friends with his guides despite the fact that they don’t speak each other’s language. Finally, Michael reflects on how his life and career have changed since then, thanks to travel.

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About Michael Palin: Travels of a Lifetime

Michael revisit his TV travels, and fans reflect on his achievement.

This show is broadcast on BBC Two, also known as the British Broadcasting Corporation.

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