Pilgrimage: The Road To Rome-banner

Pilgrimage: The Road to Istanbul

Series 3

Duration: 3 x 60'

Play Trailer  Play Screener  Contact Sales  Format

This highly acclaimed series returns, featuring celebrities of differing faiths and beliefs who embark on a modern day pilgrimage across Eastern Europe to the historic city of Istanbul.

Seven new famous faces will take to the open road as they follow a completely different route, by road and on foot. This time, journalist Adrian Chiles, a converted Catholic; former politician Edwina Currie, a lapsed Jew; Olympian Fatima Whitbread, a practicing Christian; broadcaster Mim Shaikh and television presenter Amar Latif, both Muslims; and two confirmed atheists, comedian Dom Joly and actor Pauline McLynn, will live as simple pilgrims following an ancient military route to the historic city of Istanbul, which has been transformed into a modern-day path of peace. 

The Pilgrims follow a path formed just over 10 years ago, with the aim to promote tolerance for all faiths and cultures. It will be a journey of discovery and adventure for our Pilgrims.  Donning backpacks and walking boots, they’ll stay in basic hostels, sleep in shared dorms, and follow a largely untrodden route. Starting in Serbia’s capital city Belgrade, the Pilgrims will travel through Bulgaria and the mountainous Balkans, before crossing the border into Turkey, with their goal of reaching Istanbul and the magnificent Suleymaniye Mosque.

With just over two weeks to complete their pilgrimage, they’ll visit historical monuments and buildings and see first-hand how religions have clashed over the centuries, from the Ottomans right up to more recent, 20th century conflicts. But how will the Pilgrims cope with the physical challenge and will this journey change how they feel about themselves and their beliefs? 

Episode 1

Seven celebrities of differing faiths and beliefs begin the 2200km Sultans Trail by road and on foot, a modern-day pilgrimage across Europe to the historic city of Istanbul. 

Episodic 2

Life on the Sultans Trail begins to challenge the celebrities as Adrian Chiles tells the group he’s struggling with the purpose of pilgrimage in the face of their experiences.

Episodic 3

The celebrities set off on the final leg of their pilgrimage and arrive in Turkey, where they head for the magnificent Suleymaniye Mosque in the historic city of Istanbul.

What the Press Say:

"It may sound like another excuse to put celebs through the mill, but this three-parter turns out to be a truly thought-provoking and well-made piece of telly ★★★★★" - TV Times Magazine -

"...the meeting with Pope Francis proves surprising, moving and pretty extraordinary. Even one of the group's least religious members says tearfully, "This is what I've been waiting for for a long time." David Butcher, Radio Times 

“An engaging and entertaining way to address the kind of spiritual matters that rarely make it to prime time.” **** – The Mail on Sunday

“Touching and comic” – Weekend, (Daily Mail)

“…most interesting is the clash of faith and religious belief which throws up plenty of food for thought” – Daily Mirror

“A rewarding, often entertaining watch with an extra ethical/spiritual/religious dimension.” **** – Radio Times

“A fascinating mix and…entertaining” – Daily Telegraph

“There are some fascinating conversations… (and) touching moments” – The Observer

Best TV Shows of 2018 – Radio Times

In the Top 20 TV picks – Closer Magazine

Pick of the Day – Daily Mail

Pick of the Day – i

TV Choice – Metro

Pick of the Week – The Sunday Times

Very Best of the Week – The Sunday Telegraph

Unmissable TV Show – The Mail on Sunday

Highlighted TV Choice – What’s on TV

Tonight’s Picks – The Sun

For BBC2

Pilgrimage: The Road To Rome
Also in this genre