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Mekong River with Sue Perkins

Mekong River with Sue Perkins

In this series, Sue Perkins goes on an extraordinary journey, spanning nearly 3,000 miles, to explore lives and landscapes on the point of enormous change. Across four episodes, she travels upstream through Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos and China, towards the Mekong's source high in the Himalayan glacier. Sue's epic journey begins in Vietnam, on the vast Mekong Delta, where she joins Si Hei, the queen of the noodle.

Sue Perkins stands in a small street in Japan with a pagoda in the background. | From "Japan with Sue Perkins"
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Japan with Sue Perkins

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Episode
Mekong River with Sue Perkins

Mekong River with Sue Perkins

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Episode
Mekong River with Sue Perkins

Mekong River with Sue Perkins

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Episode
Mekong River with Sue Perkins

Mekong River with Sue Perkins

the-mekong-river.jpg
Episode
Mekong River with Sue Perkins

Mekong River with Sue Perkins

Mekong River with Sue Perkins

Mekong River with Sue Perkins

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Episode
Mekong River with Sue Perkins

Mekong River with Sue Perkins

The Mekong is South East Asia's greatest river, the 'Mother of Water' that brings life to millions of people from the paddy fields of Vietnam to the mountains of the Tibetan Plateau. In this ambitious, entertaining and illuminating series, Sue Perkins goes on an extraordinary journey, spanning nearly three thousand miles, to explore lives and landscapes on the point of enormous change. Across four episodes, she travels upstream through Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos and China. In this fourth and final episode, Sue reaches her final destination - China, home to the source of this mighty river. Here change is sweeping through faster than any other Mekong nation, as China's economic miracle transforms even the remotest regions. Arriving in Yunnan's tropical south-western region of Xishuangbanna, Sue discovers how this once remote and sleepy region is now home to a booming tourist industry, with the indigenous Dai tribe at its heart. To the Dai, water is holy, the physical and spiritual source of life. Thousands of Han Chinese - who make up 92% of China's population - flock to the Dai Minority Park, a 'Disneyfied' version of an ancient Dai village, and take part in their 'traditional' water splashing ceremony. After decades of communism, the park represents China's renewed interest in the colourful melting pot of peoples that actually make up the modern China, providing a must-see holiday destination for its burgeoning middle class. Leaving the Dai Park Sue climbs higher into the foothills of Xishuangbanna to discover how the Aini tribe are adapting to a changing China. The Aini have farmed Pu'er tea for two thousand years; suddenly they can become rich from its harvest, as China's newly wealthy professionals buy up this now fashionable delicacy.
the-mekong-river.jpg
Episode
Mekong River with Sue Perkins

Mekong River with Sue Perkins

The Mekong is South East Asia's greatest river, the 'Mother of Water' that brings life to millions of people from the paddy fields of Vietnam to the mountains of the Tibetan Plateau. In this ambitious, entertaining and illuminating series, Sue Perkins goes on an extraordinary journey, spanning nearly three thousand miles, to explore lives and landscapes on the point of enormous change. Across four episodes, she travels upstream through Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos and China, towards the Mekong's source high in the Himalayan glacier. In this third episode, Sue reaches Laos, one of the poorest and least developed of all the Mekong nations. It's a country shaped by both Buddhism and Communism, and has hardly changed for centuries. Today, the beauty of its landscapes and people is bringing in foreign tourists - backpackers in search of un-spoilt Asia. Sue spends time with Bounsom, a fisherman who's turned to tourism, setting up a restaurant on the beach. And she visits Luang Prabang, a beautiful town which was once the Royal City of Laos and is now a Unesco World Heritage site, famed as the centre of Buddhism.
the-mekong-river.jpg
Episode
Mekong River with Sue Perkins

Mekong River with Sue Perkins

The Mekong is South East Asia's greatest river, the 'Mother of Water' that brings life to millions of people from the paddy fields of Vietnam to the mountains of the Tibetan Plateau. In this ambitious, entertaining and illuminating series, Sue Perkins goes on an extraordinary journey, spanning nearly three thousand miles, to explore lives and landscapes on the point of enormous change. Across four episodes, she travels upstream through Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos and China, towards the Mekong's source high in the Himalayan glacier.
the-mekong-river.jpg
Episode
Mekong River with Sue Perkins

Mekong River with Sue Perkins

The Mekong is South East Asia's greatest river, the 'Mother of Water' that brings life to millions of people from the paddy fields of Vietnam to the mountains of the Tibetan Plateau. In this ambitious, entertaining and illuminating series, Sue Perkins goes on an extraordinary journey, spanning nearly three thousand miles, to explore lives and landscapes on the point of enormous change. Across four episodes, she travels upstream through Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos and China, towards the Mekong's source high in the Himalayan glacier. Sue's epic journey begins in Vietnam, on the vast Mekong Delta, where she joins Si Hei, the 'Queen of the Noodle'. Starting at dawn, Si Hei and her eager new apprentice head out to sell noodle soup at the Delta's largest floating market - Cai Rang, a centre of commerce on the river that's endured for centuries. But communist Vietnam has one of the fastest growing economies in SE Asia, and change is coming to millions of people who live along the river. Vietnam is the world's second largest exporter of rice, so Sue moves upstream to the paddy fields where 80% of the Delta's 17 million people grow rice for a living. By day, she works with farmers Hung and Tuk in the paddies, and she spends the night with their family to find out how their lives are changing with the prospect of capitalism.
Mekong River with Sue Perkins

Mekong River with Sue Perkins

In this series, Sue Perkins goes on an extraordinary journey, spanning nearly 3,000 miles, to explore lives and landscapes on the point of enormous change. Across four episodes, she travels upstream through Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos and China, towards the Mekong's source high in the Himalayan glacier. Sue's epic journey begins in Vietnam, on the vast Mekong Delta, where she joins Si Hei, the queen of the noodle.
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