Michael Portillo embarks on six memorable railway journeys across Europe – armed only with his 1913 Bradshaw's Guide and sporting his trademark colourful jackets!
On his travels, Michael visits towns and villages along the way – exploring the sights and sampling local traditions while telling the story of what happened in continental Europe in 1913, when everything changed as the world went to war.
SOFIA TO ISTANBUL
Michael celebrates Bulgarian independence with a traditional Thracian dance, before crossing continents via the Marmaray metro line.
VIENNA TO TRIESTE
Navigating a patchwork of nations which once formed part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire, Michael witnesses the breathtaking Alpine scenery of the Semmering Pass.
PISA TO LAKE GARDA
This Grand Tour of Italy – from Pisa's famous tower to the waters of Lake Garda – sees Michael exploring the cradle of the Renaissance before embarking on a misguided search for Spaghetti Bolognese...
ATHENS TO THESSALONIKI
Beginning at the Acropolis and ending in Thessaloniki, the site of a royal assassination, Michael reveals the influences at play in the creation of modern Greece.
THE BLACK FOREST TO HANNOVER
Michael seeks the essence of Germany – from the unifying tale of Hansel and Gretel to the pioneering scientists who laid the foundation for Germany's world-class transport technology.
BARCELONA TO MALLORCA
Returning to Spain, Michael traces the roots of the Civil War that divided his family, before sampling the perfect paella and paying homage to Barcelona's most famous architect.
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