Following his phenomenally successful series exploring the railways of Britain, Continental Europe and the USA, this captivating new series sees Michael Portillo embarking on a fresh adventure in India as he takes to the tracks of one of the world's largest and most exhilarating rail networks. Steered by his 1913 copy of Bradshaw's Handbook of Indian, Foreign and Colonial Travel, Michael experiences the thrill of Indian rail travel as he journeys through an extraordinary landscape of majestic mountains, scorching deserts and plains watered by holy rivers! He encounters Maharajas and Mughals, explores ornate palaces and golden temples and learns of the role that the rail network plays in India today. Along the way Michael learns what happened under British imperial rule and charts the movement towards independence for hundreds of millions of Indians - who now live in the largest democracy in the world.
1. Amritsar to Shimla Travelling the routes used by millions of migrants during Partition, Michael helps to feed thousands at the world's largest free kitchen. He gives his trademark colourful wardrobe an Indian twist, and rides the epic Kalka to Shimla hill railway in the foothills of the Himalayas.
2. Jodhpur to New Delhi Michael embarks on a stunning journey from the Thar Desert in Rajasthan to the Indian capital, taking in desert landscapes and dazzling historic palaces.
3. Mysuru to Chennai Michael journeys through the modern south Indian states of Karnataka and Tamil Nadu, from the former princely state of Mysore to the first stronghold of the East India Company in Chennai, formerly Madras.
4. Lucknow to Kolkata On an epic journey from Lucknow in Uttar Pradesh to Kolkata in West Bengal, Michael charts a course through India's history from the days of The East India Company to the dawn of independence.