“Pole to Pole” – A Book Review

“Pole to Pole” – Michael Palin

BBC, 1992

Pole to Pole

Under the Covers…

The 2nd of Palin’s great global journeys, in this epic (traveling by either sea or land, unless not possible) he travels, as the name suggests, from the North Pole, all the way to the South Pole (trying to follow the same latitude the whole journey).

Concluding in the December of 1991, it covers some epic moments in 20th century history, we are presented with a vastly different global map from when the journey began some 140 days earlier.

What I liked and what I didn’t…

Perhaps I’m just sentimental, but there really wasn’t much to dislike.

Michael Palin has always been such a likeable fellow, and his presence on camera translates into the written word.

The travel tales are beautifully complimented by the wonderful photographs of Basil Pao (who also worked on ‘Around the World in 80 Days’).

My only suggestion would be, that if given the opportunity, read both the book and watch the TV series, as there are some moments featured in one but not the other.

He covers some great places, and would surely have been one of the last tourists to visit the Soviet Union before its 1991 collapse.

Should you give this a read..?

This is certainly not an intense read, and broken up with the many images contributed by Basil, it’s one that can be picked up and put down with regularity but still won’t take you too long to get through.

A no brainer for Palin fans, but also for travel readers and historians in general.

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