I have not been able to travel for the past few months. But that doesn't and cannot stop me from being an armchair traveler right :) So not just browsing, I binge-watched travel shows and documentaries on Netflix India just to add more to my bucket list and got my eyes popped out watching all the exotic places. So here is a list of travel shows on Netflix that you can binge-watch. It is not just entertaining, most of the shows are very knowledgeable too.
Am a wildlife enthusiast, what do you think I would start this list with ;) Our planet is sheer brilliance of wildlife documentaries ever. It is released in 2019 so the amazing sound quality and video quality make it top-notch, added to it is the voice of Sir David Attenborough. The episodes vary from characteristics of wildlife to survival stories and how global warming is affecting them. But more on I was hooked to the mind-blowing videography and direction. The mating rituals of birds of paradise, the carnivorous plants of the rainforest gobbling up insects, the glowing marine life found in deep deep waters, the ferocious sharks and singing whales, and featuring are some forests from western ghats and national parks of India too. This is a must-watch series. Pull up the curtains, switch off the lights, get the volumes up and enjoy the show.
Am sure most of you with Netflix would have already watched this. The first volume is on street food from countries across Asia and it took me down a nostalgic road. Street food is not just about the unique delicacies that you find in Asia, it is more about people and their perseverance to success. Elderly women and families pulling it all up together and building a business out of nothing. Smiling and cooking up delicious food in spite of all the pain. Oh my! My favourites were the crab omelet from Thailand, more than the omelet I liked the story-telling of Jay Fai. Jajan pasar from Indonesia, this one has an old traditional one and modern version of it. The making of this dish makes you drool. Goat stew of Taiwan, it is one of the only kitchens remaining which has a clay oven room and they cook the goat in it for three days. When he opens that pot of goat stew on the third day, I swear I could smell it. There is a portion on India too, exploring the of Delhi.
Tales by Light
Tales by light is a series of episodes that follows the life of photographers as they go around documenting wildlife, life around Earth and about Earth itself. The stories are narrated by the photographers themselves. So the power of each episode depends on the narrative power of the photographers. Some of the episodes I felt were super self-centered around the photographer. While some were focussed on the subject they were photographing. It has a mix of episodes from indigenous tribes to marine life and exotic animals of Africa. Episodes from Season 2 kept me hooked on. Misunderstood predators, where photographer Eric Cheng convinces that sharks are like pets shows not only about sharks but his passion for this kind of trying to create awareness is amazing. The other intriguing series was from Stephen Dupont documenting death around the world. It is quite a topic to ponder on.
Sex and Love
To travel is to know about the culture of the place too, right? You will be surprised to see how much of difference in perception exists between the countries and regions on the topic of Sex. And how culture plays a major role in the way people express love. What is more surprising is, how many countries were so open about sex and upon invasion from another culture everything has been changed and it still continues to be the same. Most of the countries which were invaded by the British have now become reserved and shun about sex. Tokyo and Delhi were more or less the same, couples forget sex after kids, kids never have seen parents kiss or hug, no expression of love, etc. Arab women are doing hymen repair surgeries to please their men and not disappoint them from the fact that they are not virgins. Berlin conducts rope bondage classes and has entertainment arenas for people to play or relax while being naked. And in Africa! While all the work is done by the women, the men still have girlfriend, wife and mistress and the hierarchy of all three matters. Fun episodes am telling you. It is all in the mind.
This is for the crazy kind! The one who is behind the adventure, would like to put their life at risk and is in a lookout for the strange things in the world, well the name says it all - Dark tourist. David farrier is the dark tourist here and he goes on a trail exploring the life of Pablo Escobar, goes to Fukushima nuclear disaster, and then he goes on a trail that goes around a serial killer, follows some voodoo practices. I stopped watching after a while. Cos it is dark and not my cup of tea.
How did your metropolitan cities come into existence? What was their history? Whose vision was it that today the township has been built and functioning well? What are the current places to visit in the city? So much of history and interesting facts. It is fascinating to see how the once wastelands and swamp lands are now metropolitan cities. How traditional dishes as simple as fries and carbonara came into being. It is also available on youtube and if you have a curious mind you will definitely appreciate this show.
India's Frontier Railways
Train journeys are special and people you meet on the journey share stories that make it more memorable. And now what if these trains are crossing the border and traveling to our neighbouring countries! India's frontier railways is about stories from India and across the border. How did these rail routes came into existence and how the people are getting benefitted out of it. The Maitree express that runs between India and Bangladesh tracks people who use it everyday, the passport stamping across borders and the livelihood of boys selling stuff on the train. It is a fun documentary that covers how just a train plays major role in the life of people. The Nepal train was particularly funny. It is like just some rustic boxes that pull across the tracks. No reservation, no guarantee that the train will even run. It is a 2014 documentary and I sincerely wish that the status of this train now is different. It also has episode on the Samjhauta express running between India and Pakistan.
World's Most Extraordinary Homes
I have a fascination for houses that are built with lots of light, with beautiful views, using natural resources and those that blend with nature. I watch a lot of such programs in TLC too. Some day I dream of a house where my bedroom gives a great view of the landscape and I would finally love waking up early everyday :P So I watched this series of houses overlooking blue oceans, perched on a cliff, with trees growing inside, constructed with eco-friendly and recycled products. This series also has an episode on India. Couple of it perched along western ghats around Maharashtra border. I almost died of jealousy! Check it out.
Somebody feed Phil
Phil is determined to explore the country through food. So he travels to countries, eats delicacies, talks to his parents about his little adventures, performs some voluntary work or cultural activity. The episode of Saigon was good where he goes to collect lotus stem. Venice episode I liked mostly because I have a crush on Venice. It is nice but I couldn't binge watch it. Phil was a bit too excited on all the episodes that it borders not so real excitement. Watch it for the food.
Chasing ice is a documentary on global warming and disappearing glaciers. This is a must-watch Netflix documentary. Environmental photographer James Balog and his team photograph the disappearing glaciers year after year and show us at what a rapid pace we are losing the ice caps. The place is stunning, the melting glacier is stunning and the story is so gripping! I was stunned to know that smoke from industries travels so far and the black soot gets deposited on the glaciers. And since it is black soot it attracts sunlight leading to the melting of glaciers. It is amazing alarming shocking all at once to know about this phenomenon.
Lost Treasure Hunters
Sam Speerstra and his team arrive in India looking for Golconda diamonds along the Krishna river. Sam tries to decode maps and old scriptures and identifies potential spots in Golconda which could have been potential diamond mines in the past. Golconda mines have been announced as exhausted and no mining operation going on currently. Kohinoor diamond was one of the diamonds found at Golconda and the place is known for such prominent huge diamonds discovered. Sam and his team go around sieving through the sand from Krishna river, dive into the river, find mining spots in the hills around and with mythological stories associated around the place, does it really have diamonds? And did they manage to find the diamond? Very thrilling series with picturesque Andhra landscapes around. Interesting revelations too.
Raja Rasoi Aur Anya Kahaniyan
Food show solely based on India. But it is a series from 2014 so you can see how plain it is. From plain music to plain anchoring and no drone shots, it is a very simple show. It actually made me feel, how much has technology got updated in just 5 years. The dishes are actually nice. They touch base on a bit of north and south India. Only season one is available on Netflix. Season two seems to cover almost every other state. Hope they upload that too soon.
This is again for the wildlife enthusiasts. There are plenty of wild <insert country name> series on Netflix. Like Wild China, Wild Japan, Wild Alaska, Wild Pacific, and all these series are from BBC Earth. So the quality is really good and content makes you go awe.
72 Dangerous Places to Live In
This is again for those freaky, crazy and adventurous seekers who want to make a bucket list of unsafe places to travel to. This includes dangerous roads, earthquake-prone places, polluted lakes, mines, wilderness, extreme climate, and temperatures. I was able to watch only a couple of episodes.
This is a new series and honestly, I cannot tell am such a big fan of it. The good thing about this show is they have managed to find the remotest part of the earth and indigenous tribes that practice unique traditions and culture. The program is about a couple who have been engaged for long and to know each other better, the girl decides to follow the guy in his travel expeditions. The problem though is she and sometimes he keeps complaining about where they have landed at and what kind of stupid strange customs these are. They went looking for these tribes so they better respect their traditions. If you can shut down their voices the show is good.