Travel documentaries

All aboard! Join a star-studded cast of travel guides as they take you to some of the most remote and fascinating corners of the globe. BBC Select is home to BBC travel documentaries you can watch in the US and Canada today.

Joanna Lumley in the Kingdom of the Thunder Dragon

Watch Joanna Lumley in the Kingdom of the Thunder Dragon

Bhutan, the beautiful land-locked nation in the Eastern Himalayas, has always been steeped in mystery.

In this revealing BBC travel documentary, Absolutely Fabulous star Joanna Lumley retraces the steps her grandparents took in the country 60 years before. Through her eyes, a world that challenges accepted ideas of wealth and happiness is explored.

But what family secrets will Joanna uncover?

Oceans Apart: Art and the Pacific

Watch Oceans Apart: Art and the Pacific on BBC Select

It’s a story of exploration and exploitation. 250 years ago, Captain Cook voyaged into the Pacific region for the first time.

While this encounter between the West and Pacific peoples undoubtedly devastated indigenous communities, it also opened the world’s eyes to their images and ideas, forever changing the global imagination.

Art historian James Fox looks at this momentous meeting of cultures in this insightful documentary.

The Silk Road

Stream The Silk Road on BBC Select

Covering 5,000 miles, passing through 13 countries and crossing some of the most dramatic landscapes on the planet, this is the fascinating story of the lucrative trade route which changed the course of civilization forever.

In this extraordinary documentary series, Dr Sam Willis explores how the fortunes, ideas and history of the West were shaped and exchanged by travelers from the East.

Joanna Lumley: In The Land of the Northern Lights

Watch Joanna Lumley: In The Land of the Northern Lights on BBC Select

BBC Select is heading north with actress Joanna Lumley as she pursues a life-long dream to witness the elusive Northern Lights in this moving documentary.

As a little girl growing up in Malaysia, Joanna had never seen snow or felt cold. She longed to head to the land of trolls and snow queens.

But she could never have guessed what a challenging and absorbing arctic adventure lay ahead of her.

Christmas in New York: Inside the Plaza

Watch Christmas in New York: Inside the Plaza on BBC Select

Synonymous with luxury, Manhattan’s magisterial Plaza Hotel has played host to presidents, movie stars and the mega-rich for decades. But when it comes to Christmas, the extravagance is kicked up a notch.

This access-all-areas documentary goes behind the scenes as the Plaza enters its busiest season. No request is denied to guests who expect festive opulence and non-stop, five-star service.