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The point and the pleasure of travel
In the last Excess Baggage, John McCarthy talks to three inveterate travellers: Sara Wheeler, who has written on Africa and the Antarctic, explorer Benedict Allen who has travelled in Siberia and New Guinea and documentary maker Simon Reeve who has just returned from the Indian Ocean. He asks them why they are driven to explore the world and what is the point of travel. Producer: Harry Parker.
Africa - Rwanda, Uganda and South Sudan
John McCarthy discusses travel to the African countries of Rwanda, Uganda and to the world's newest country, South Sudan. With his guests, doctor Rob Summerhayes, paramedic Franz Opitz and forensic accountant Benedict Jenks - John finds out what attracts people to visiting a country with troubles past or present. All the guests are sensitive to the highly political issues that are involved in visiting such countries and have wide experience of travel to some of the world's hotspots. All have also spent considerable time in Central Africa developing considerable insight into those countries. Producer: Harry Parker.
Lake Titicaca - Manchester, Bolivia - Malaysia
John McCarthy meets the former debutante Meriel Larken who fell in love with Peru and rescued and restored a Victorian steam ship on Lake Titicaca. He is also joined by Chris Smith and Liz Peel who went by canoe through the Bolivian jungle in search of the village of Manchester; and Kung Fu expert Nick Hurst explains why he set off to Malaysia and China to spend time with his grandmaster Sugong. Producer: Margaret Collins.
John McCarthy explores wildlife travel with naturalist and tv presenter, Mark Carwardine, who has spent thirty years travelling around the world to observe and aid conservation of a huge range of species including whales, tigers, gorillas and sea birds. He is also joined by wildlife travel writer, James Parry, who has made a unique tour of the world's top twenty deserts chosen for their outstanding wildlife and landscape interest - and award-winning wildlife photographer, Andy Rouse, discusses his recent trips to Rwanda in relation to mountain gorillas, and to India to study tigers. Producer: Margaret Collins.
Sandi Toksvig goes to Reykjavik to look at aspects of tourism in Iceland and discovers that the volcanic eruptions and the financial crash there may not have been so bad for the country. As well as reminding the world of its geological attractions the crises have helped Iceland look at its cultural roots like the sagas and....knitting. Producer: Harry Parker.