The BEST Episodes of Full Circle with Michael Palin

Every episode ever - ranked by fan votes!

Last Updated: Oct 18, 2021

Network: BBC

Michael Palin's journey through all the countries bordering the Pacific Ocean was anything but 'pacific' as blizzards, Bogotá's Bullet Street and Alaskan abandonment pushed him and the crew to the limit. But there was time for adventure including crawling through the Viet Cong's Cu Chi tunnels, sharing a feast with headhunters in Borneo and helicoptering into New Zealand's Tasman glacier.

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Alaska and Russia

#1 - Alaska and Russia

Season 1 - Episode 1 - Aired Aug 31, 1997

From Diomede Island to Alaska then across to Kamchatka peninsula which is one of the scenic highlights of this series. From there to Vladivostok.

star 8.83
72 votes
Bolivia and Peru

#2 - Bolivia and Peru

Season 1 - Episode 8 - Aired Oct 26, 1997

Now he visits Lake Titicaca and then into Peru, visiting Cuzco and Machu Picchu and then into the jungle for a multi-day canoe journey. This is an excellent part of the journey with more adventure and interesting locations.

star 8.00
37 votes
Peru and Colombia

#3 - Peru and Colombia

Season 1 - Episode 9 - Aired Nov 2, 1997

Journeys on into the Amazon Basin, and then grabs a plane and boat into Colombia before arriving in Bogota and taking a first hand look at the drug issues. Another very good episode.

star 8.00
36 votes
Mexico, USA, Canada and Alaska

#4 - Mexico, USA, Canada and Alaska

Season 1 - Episode 10 - Aired Nov 9, 1997

The last episode starts in Mexico City, looks at the Mexico/US border from both sides and then visits LA and San Francisco before heading into Canada and hitting a final disappointment.

star 8.00
35 votes
Chile and Bolivia

#5 - Chile and Bolivia

Season 1 - Episode 7 - Aired Oct 19, 1997

The next episode picks up in South America at Cape Horn and then as he travels up the coast of Chile, visits some islands off the coast and on into the Atacama Desert and by a very interesting train to Bolivia.

star 7.97
36 votes

#6 - China

Season 1 - Episode 3 - Aired Sep 21, 1997

Palin travels through China and visits Qingtao, Shanghai, and a trip along the Yangtze. Finally, he reaches Vietnam.

star 7.95
39 votes
Japan and Korea

#7 - Japan and Korea

Season 1 - Episode 2 - Aired Sep 14, 1997

This episode focuses on his time in Japan including visiting the Kodo Drummers, and Korea including the border area with North Korea. This episode seemed much more touristy than other series. Not so much adventure, more just travelling.

star 7.89
36 votes
Borneo and Java

#8 - Borneo and Java

Season 1 - Episode 5 - Aired Oct 5, 1997

By Ship to Borneo and then on into Malaysia, visiting native villages inland and then to Indonesia where he travels the length of Java and runs into some trouble.

star 7.87
38 votes
Australia and New Zealand

#9 - Australia and New Zealand

Season 1 - Episode 6 - Aired Oct 12, 1997

There is a bit of a gap (explained in the interview contained in the extras) as this episode starts in Darwin and then on to Katherine, Alice Springs, Adelaide, Sydney and then on to New Zealand.

star 7.82
38 votes
Vietnam and the Philippines

#10 - Vietnam and the Philippines

Season 1 - Episode 4 - Aired Sep 28, 1997

Hanoi, Da Nang, Hue, the Mekong Delta, Saigon and then on to the Philippines including Manila, Zamboanga and faith healers.

star 7.57
65 votes