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Sri Lanka to Bangladesh

This stage of Simon Reeve's journey takes him from Sri Lanka to Bangladesh. He starts in Sri Lanka, where Chinese money has helped end a 30-year war.

This stage of Simon Reeve's journey around the spectacular Indian Ocean takes him from Sri Lanka to Bangladesh.

The island of Sri Lanka, with its strategic location and tropical spices, was a target for invaders and colonisers for centuries. Now the Chinese are building a huge new port in the south, and Chinese money has helped the Sri Lankan government bring a 30-year war to an end. Simon also visits the north of the island - scene of vicious battles between fighters from the Tamil minority and the Sri Lankan army.

Heading north, Simon investigates one of the Indian Ocean's fastest growing industries - providing prawns for the West. Off the coast of India, thousands of prawn trawlers drag their nets along the sea bed devastating the marine environment. In Bangladesh, huge prawn farms flood the fertile land with salt water, which also causes concern for the environment. It is all to provide cheap prawns for Western supermarkets.

This leg of the journey ends with one of the most amazing sights of the whole Indian Ocean: the ship-breaking beaches of Chittagong, where dozens of huge tankers and container ships are beached before being broken up for scrap by vast armies of low-paid Bangladeshi workers living in terrible conditions.

3 months left to watch

59 minutes


Music Played

Timings (where shown) are from the start of the programme in hours and minutes

  • 00:06

    Take That

    Greatest Day

  • 00:13


    For The Huntress and The Moon

  • 00:48

    Dick Dale and His Del‐Tones



Role Contributor
Presenter Simon Reeve
Executive Producer Sam Bagnall
Producer Olly Bootle
Director Olly Bootle


  • Sun 27 May 2012 20:00
  • Sun 27 May 2012 20:30
  • Tue 29 May 2012 22:30
  • Wed 8 Aug 2012 00:15
  • Mon 10 Sep 2012 23:30
  • Sun 18 Nov 2012 17:30
  • Sun 18 Nov 2012 19:00
  • Sun 25 Nov 2012 17:30
  • Mon 22 Jul 2013 19:00
  • Mon 22 Jul 2013 23:20
  • Tue 10 May 2016 15:45
  • Tue 10 May 2016 16:00
  • Fri 3 Feb 2017 15:25
  • Tue 3 Apr 2018 15:15
  • Fri 31 Jan 2020 14:15

Simon Reeve around the world

Simon Reeve around the world

Follow Simon as he explores the world and meets amazing people.