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tv   The Travel Show  BBC News  January 14, 2017 5:30am-6:01am GMT

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of cobbling together false claims that he has strong ties to russia. mr trump says the allegations are "fake news" and described those behind them as "sleazebags". meanwhile, the us congress has taken the first step towards dismantling the controversial obamaca re health—ca re law. however, lawmakers remain concerned about a lack of replacement for the controversial system that was championed by the outgoing president. the united nations and aid agencies are calling on european governments to do more to help thousands of migrants and refugees at risk of freezing to death. several people have already died in the sudden cold snap that has hit parts of the continent, including serbia and greece. it was intended as a light—hearted comedy about a rumoured road trip which michaeljackson, marlon brando and elizabeth taylor are supposed to have made together. but the choice of a white actor,
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joseph fiennes, to playjackson, has proved controversial. the programme prompted criticism from the late pop star's daughter, an online petition and, today, sky decided to drop the show — as our arts correspondent, colin paterson reports. i sensed danger... this is all that audiences are going to see ofjoseph fiennes playing michaeljackson — two clips from a trailer for a new sky show, urban myths. today, sky announced they will no longer be broadcasting the episode. the reason: concerns expressed by michaeljackson‘s immediate family, adding that they never intended to cause any offence, and thatjoseph fiennes fully supports the decision. michael jackson's daughter paris was asked on twitter what she made of a white actor taking on the role of her black father. she said she was incredibly offended, and it made her want to vomit.
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the scottish actor brian cox plays marlon brando in the show, and thinks the decision for it to be dropped is ridiculous, it is ridiculous. it is this pc nonsense which has gotten out of hand. this is completely wrong and sky has lacked courage to do something quite mild. it's almost eight years since michaeljackson died, but he still has legions of devoted fans, many of whom come to the national football museum to see this statue, which used to be outside fulham's ground. stories about him make headlines around the world, but this is far from the first time a white performer has played him in a comedy. leigh francis‘ take on michaeljackson was a huge part of channel 4 show bo‘ selecta. while one of the biggest names in us comedy, amy poehler, regularly impersonated him
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on saturday night live. it's just the flu, liz taylor. i'll be back on my feet soon. moonwalking, climbing trees... when probably the most famous black performer certainly ever is being cast, they still cast a middle—class white guy. i can understand why people would be annoyed by that. it's believed that the decision for sky to drop the episode was made at the top of the organisation. they insist it's a matter of taste, and not censorship. now it's time for the travel show. this week, i'm exploring russia's hidden underground military history in vladivostok. i can just imagine the dark deeds that would be done here. oh, my god. something dropped on my head! we go shopping in myanmar.
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it's actually quite difficult to walk through here. it's so busy. simon calder has tips on what to do if you're heading to rome with toddlers in tow. hello and welcome to the travel show, with me, carmen roberts. coming to you this week from russia. and a little later on in the programme, i'll be going underground, into the tunnels beneath the streets of vladivostok. but first, we head to myanmar, a country off—limits for decades because of military rule. but now, it's opening up, and tourism is booming. we sent rajan datar on a trek off
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the beaten track to find out about a project aimed at helping local people benefit from the increase in the number of people now visiting their previously off—limits country. dazzling pagodas and ancient temples, these are the iconic sites that are attracting more people than ever before to myanmar. but i'm here to get away from the main tourist sites and see a way of life that's remained unchanged for centuries. i'm heading to pindaya in the danu zone of the shan state to follow one of a new series of trials that it's hoped will kick—start tourism in the region. i'vejust arrived in pindaya and its market day. and it's bustling, it's full of people selling their wares, loads of different vegetables, loads of fruit, meat, the whole thing. and if we go down this channel here, we'll see what else we can find here. it's actually quite difficult
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to walk through here. it's so busy. the market is the starting point for many of the new danu trails. there's an incredible array of stuff on offer, but the thought actually trying to buy anything in the crowds of people is a little overwhelming. do you know what, i can't figure out who's selling and who's buying here! even though it's kind of like anarchy, you don't feel any sense of danger. no one is trying to rip you off. no one's trying to steal anything. it's a nice atmosphere. really cool. back into the throng. there are more than 20 different walking routes that've been mapped out through this region, with different levels of distance and difficulty. expert guide dohjoins me to lead the way. tell me why it's good for the danu people to have this trek.
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for danu people, they will get extra money from tourism. like, let me say about a supply change. so, tourism creates, and many people they can getjobs. so, shopkeepers, hotel owners, waiters. maybe we can create more and more jobs. the trail network winds through villages that have rarely seen tourists. please, take off shoes, sir. yes. thank you very much. this farming family produce bamboo hats as a sideline business. they can make up to 300 a week. and then put on and cut. they need ten pieces to make one hat. this is a hat for the man. a hat for the man. and this is the hat for the woman.
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0k. different. ah, 0k. whoops! a bit too far on the other side. i'm not so sure! let me get that exactly right. are you laughing at me?! so, in here, you can make one size. very nice. well, one size fits all. let's see if it fits me. shall we? can i try? ah! free size! she must have guessed the size of my head, because it fits perfect. she said this is for you.
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i couldn't! 0k, iwill, then. the rest of the hats are bound for the market. so, what's the legend of the spider? so the spider capture the seven... and last on our trek, this major site of pilgrimage. statues of a huge spider and a prince sit at the bottom of these stairs. figures from ancient legends. look at this. wow! it's like these caves are home to 9000 statues, some dating back hundreds of years. they're all brought and donated by devotees hoping for a blessing. it's just buddhas galore, and they're made of, what? what material underneath the gold?
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like a concrete. concrete? so, when making a good image, what did the people hope happens in terms of buddhism? is it to give them a better life, afterlife? this is like a good deed. yeah, like merit making? yes. and maybe for the next existence, to get to a better place, you know? people to be up and into nirvana in one day. wow. and if nirvana is not an option, i, for one, am happy after years of this country being in isolation to settle for a slice of this magnificent landscape and culture. and if you're thinking of visiting myanmar in the near future,
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here are our list of the best things to see and do. the shwedagon pagoda has stood for 2500 years, a tribute to myanmar‘s buddhist faith. catch it at sunset to see it glow. at 42 square kilometres, bagan is one of asia's largest archaeological sites. access was restricted under the military junta, so most tourists are still to discover its monasteries and temples. nearby, mount popa is another less—visited holy spot. at over 700 metres, prepare yourself for a steep climb. also, watch out for thousands of macaque monkeys that live on the mountain, and some don't take
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kindly to visitors. keep any food you have sealed if you don't want them running off with your lunch. next up, it's our thirsty explorer brad cohen, who this week is off to kosovo in search of some home—made rakija. so we embarked on a whirlwind trip to learn about the drink known as raki or rakija. though language, culture and religion may divide kosovo and other former yugoslavian countries, they all share a love for this ubiquitous fruit brandy. everywhere we went there was raki — a judge's party, a lingerie shop, even a monastery. monks here produced wine since the 14th century. what makes it good? taste it and you tell me what you think about it. for nearly 700 years, wine and rakija helped support the serbian monks.
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here it has to be soft, but here it is to be strong. i imagine this can get you through a pretty rough balkan winter. and a nice balkan summer! as we toasted, i couldn't help but wonder how often a serb and albanian kosovar actually shared a drink these days. you guys seem pretty peaceful right now. we grew up in the same country. his friends needed more rakija for his bar. let's go. so we headed to his producer's house. a town renowned for its rich soil and production of rakija wine. here, we got a lesson in home—made distillation. we were greeted in typical kosovar fashion, with a warm handshake, something to drink and far too much food, which was quite literally from the table. two hours now of eating and drinking home—made drink and food.
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life is good. sakib‘s story is common in the balkans. during the yugoslav wars throughout the 90s, jobs became scarce. but there was plenty of fruit, and people used it to turn centuries—old family traditions into a business. supplying bars with home—made rakija. that is tasty. that day, sakib was making plum rakija, and friends, neighbours and the entire family rushed to help with the precision of a pit crew. at its best, rakija tastes anywhere between a tasty grappa or fine cognac, depending on ageing and type of fruit. at its worst, rakija tastes like embalming fluid. i think you could preserve bodies with. unfortunately, it's impossible to know before you taste it. stay with us, because later on in the programme,
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i run into some unexpected visitors deep beneath the streets of vladivostok. and our global guru simon calder is here with his advice on the best things to see and do in lisbon, so don't go away. welcome to the slice of the show that tackles your questions about getting the best out of travel. coming up shortly, the ideal way to see rome with toddlers, and the challenges of rail travel in laos. but first, there's been lots of interest in the first nonstop scheduled flights between europe and australia. from march 2018, you should be able to fly from london heathrow to perth in western australia in 17 hours. one of the world's very longest air routes.
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tickets don't go on sale until april, 2017, and we don't yet know how much the trip will cost. next, emma fletcher treated a cheerful video message to bbc travel show asking... we are the fletcher family in chester. we're off to rome in a week in the middleofjanuary, and wonder if you've got any tips for us with toddlers. thank you! first, visit explora il museo dei bambini as it calls itself, full of fun, interactive exhibits for small children, and free for the under fives. next, there's the villa borghese bioparco. aalthough rome's zoo is modest, the reptile house is always fun, and warm injanuary, too. and for an ice cream at a price that won't send you into financial meltdown, giolitti, an elegant institution at the heart of rome and well worth the inevitable queue. drjs baug is heading to europe from his home city of mumbai.
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i'm travelling to lisbon for a business meeting, and i have a full day free. can you suggest the best tour options to see lisbon? start in the elegant city centre, known as bayelsa, mostly built in the 18th century. then explore the hills to the east with the original moorish quarter of alfama. from there, tram 28 planks it way westwards across the city and clambers up to the giappo district, perched on a hill high above the noise and bustle of the centre. along the way, you can barely move for eating and drinking opportunities, including my favourite coffee spot in europe, the cafe a brasileira, a feast of mahogany and mirrors that has been serving sweet, strong coffee for almost a century. finally, john rose was in cambodia last year, and says... we met a couple who told us they had travelled from the very north of laos to the south by train. have you any information regarding this, as we'd love
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to pursue it? john, the couple you met had perhaps been travelling too long. unlike neighbouring cambodia and vietnam, laos hasjust six kilometres of railway. the line runs from the friendship bridge over the mighty mekong river, which marks the thai border to thanaleng station, 13 kilometres from the capital, vientiane. a shuttle train me to the express from bangkok to run across and into laos, where you can get a visa on arrival. to reach the capital, you then have to take a bus or a taxi. until the rail network expands, the ideal way to travel in laos is by riverboat on the mekong, though go downstream from the fine city of luang prabang to vientiane. unless you've got plenty of time on your hands to travel against the current. whether you or after a slow boat or a fast train, the travel show is here to help, so e—mail your question to the travel show at bbc.couk, and i'll do my very best to find
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you an answer. from me, simon calder, the global guru, bye for now and see you next time. vladivostok in russia's far east is home to over 500,000 people. and it's no stranger to traffic jams, partly because there's no subway system here. but what do live beneath the live stock's hills are the remnants of what used to be one of the most powerful maritime fortresses in the world. abandoned the decades, some areas are now open to tourists. this is the lad in, he's an author whose interest in vladivostok‘s military past was sparked as a young boy growing up in this area. is this where you used to come as a child? yeah, yeah, yeah.
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today, vladimir and i are exploring his childhood stomping ground, also known as stronghold number one. so those holes there, whether made by guns? they are holes made from quick firing guns. at the turn of the 20th—century, tsarist russia went to war with japan over who controlled korea and manchuria to the south and the waters surrounding them. vladivostok was home to the imperial russian fleet, and that made it a potential target. vladimir, why was vladivostok such an important military point? it was the only gate of russia in the pacific region, and it was the only port on the russian pacific shore connected with siberia and other russia by trans—siberian railway. i didn't expect the
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ceilings to be so high. it was proposed as a shelter of peoples, and not only as access path. that is why there is a lot of space. yeah. space for people. although many parts of the fort were used during the cold war, this particular stronghold was abandoned after world war ii. it's safe to say it has seen better days. to be honest, ifind this place quite creepy. maybe i read too many crime novels, but i canjust imagine the dark deeds that would be done here. oh, god. something dropped on my head! you know what? people are still allowed to come in here. there are no doors barricading people. you can see from the rubbish on the floor that people still use these shelters. that was gross, that thing that fell on my head. during the soviet era,
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vladivostok was closed from the outside world. it only opened to visitors in 1992. as the cold war thawed, a new generation of enthusiasts got interested in the abandoned fort and sprawling underpasses, some of them with more western influences. today, sasha takes tours around fort number seven. in good condition, it is one of the easiest forts to visit. but although it is well looked after, it's still best to go with a guide. fort number seven was completed in 1916, and it housed troops until 1923 when the city was demilitarised. during soviet times, the fort was used as a political
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prison, after which it was deserted. but, despite years of neglect, sasha tells me the fort still has many of its original features. tell me where we're going. fort number seven is used by locals and visitors who come here for guided tours and for leisure activities, such as skateboarding and laser tag. there's a guy with a gun pointed at me! what am i meant to do?! i'm notjumping at all! although many of the military structures in vladivostok are still derelict, it's great to see more people getting interested in them, because whether its history or a fantasy game that gets you here, these structures that once aimed to make vladivostok impregnable, deserve to be preserved. that's all we've got time for this
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week, and don't forget, if you want to follow us on our travels in real—time, you can sign up to our social media feeds, where you can share your travel too. coming up next week, we head to the us to go whale watching off the coast of new york. there's a lot of excitement on the boat, because someone... there it is! and addy sees how far he can get exploring a massive cave network in oman. there's flights and flights of stairs, even i'm not going to attempt to go up them. it would probably easier to get up to heaven than to get up that lot. that's on the show next week, but for now, for me, carmen roberts, and the rest of the travel show team here in russia, it's goodbye. hello there.
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it looks as if the cold weather will continue into the weekend. some have had snow, quite significant snow, as you can see from oui’ weather watcher here in lanarkshire. of course, there have been other concerns through the day on friday and through the night, this sent in from whitley bay earlier. and that is the combination of high tides and strong winds pushing down the east coast, and so for the immediate future there are still flood warnings, severe flood warnings, out from the environment agency. the floodline, if you are concerned, 0345 9881188. now, the winds will continue to ease through the remainder of the night and into the morning, but they are still blowing a gale in places, and it is a blustery end to the night. still some wintry showers, something a little bit more
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organised crossing scotland, northern and western areas, which could just watch the salt off. it is going to be icy. that is a big concern if you are out through the morning. the rest of the night, temperatures widely below freezing, in the towns and cities, even. so it will be much colder out in the countryside, and it will be a severe frost because of the strength of the wind. now, as we pick up the forecast on saturday, the winds are starting to ease away, and you can see a subtle difference in where we will see the showers. more likely, i think, through western areas during the day on saturday. and again, the wintry element is there, especially over the hills, but there will be heavier showers for eastern areas, and if they come onshore, could have some hail, some thunder, and also we could have some sleet and snow over the hills. you can see a pestering of showers for northern ireland, northern england, across scotland again, and across the north—east, and it remains cold. the wind chill not as significant, just because the winds are easing away. but it is still a breezy old day going into a breezy night, with another frost. and then we get a subtle change. we start to see some milder,
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slightly milder air, trying to come in off the atlantic. as it comes in, it turns to snow, or potentially freezing rain, so potentially some very icy conditions through saturday evening and overnight into sunday, as that falls onto frozen ground. and that is because we've got this wedge of slightly milder air, so rain—bearing clouds trying to come on top of the cold air. so there is the potential for some snow orfreezing rain. either way, some rather miserably raw conditions as we get going into sunday. slight easing in that patchy rain, sleet and snow later. but, as you can see, a grey day for many, and because we've got that milder air coming over the cold air, could be quite murky and grey as well. in eastern areas we could hang onto the wintry weather, the cold weather, for much of the day. so there is some uncertainty as we move into sunday. do stay tuned to the forecast if you have plans, but it looks as if the chilly air could hang on into the south—east. the warnings, they are on the website. hello. this is breakfast, with charlie stayt and steph mcgovern. the prime minister says doctors in england must extend their hours to ease pressure on accident and emergency services. theresa may says funding to gps
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will be cut unless they can prove there isn't a need for a 12—hour seven—day service. good morning. it's saturday the 14th of january. also ahead: thousands of people have been evacuated from their homes but towns and villages along the east coast escape serious flooding. mps call for the prime minister to publish its brexit plan by mid february at the latest. in sport.
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