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Sink into your couch with these insightful TV shows

‘Vikings: The Rise and Fall’ airs on National Geographic, Wednesdays at 6pm. Picture: Supplied

‘Vikings: The Rise and Fall’ airs on National Geographic, Wednesdays at 6pm. Picture: Supplied

Published Jul 22, 2022


While most viewers prefer to binge on the more popular, trendy TV shows that offer plenty of drama, why not take a break and enjoy these insightful, educational shows that often get overlooked.

Here’s our pick of amazing shows worth your time.

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Abandoned Engineering’ – Discovery Family, Tuesdays at 7.35pm

In its fifth season, Tom Ward narrates this documentary series that looks at some of the greatest engineering projects in the world that have now been abandoned.

The series explores how and why they were built, considers the financial and social costs of their failure and examines the environmental and ecological impacts.

Experts come up with plans to make something beautiful or useful from the ruins.

Vikings: The Rise and Fall’ – National Geographic, Wednesdays at 6pm

This docu-series offers a fresh perspective of Vikings – who are notoriously known for waging war from the seas – but their reality is far more complex.

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Viewers are taken on a televisual roller-coaster to uncover ground-breaking new discoveries revealing who the Vikings really were. We witness the Vikings’ first voyages beyond the Scandinavian coast, the sacking of York, and sieges of Paris, as we uncover the trade routes the Vikings developed as far east as Baghdad and West, to reach the US.

Through rigorous archaeological research and expert textual analysis of manuscripts, a clear picture of who the Vikings were and how they shaped our world is painted.

Spectacular Earth’ – BBC Earth, Thursdays at 8pm

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Get up close to the planet’s wonders with “Spectacular Earth”. This series looks at the world’s most stunning natural phenomena and discovers the extraordinary global forces that coincide to make each spectacle happen.

With breakthrough scientific knowledge and cutting edge filming techniques, it shows just how mind-blowing our natural elements are. You’ll be in awe of what our planet can really do.

Britain’s Beautiful Rivers with Richard Hammond’ – BBC Earth, Saturdays at 7pm

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Richard Hammond of “Top Gear” fame trades in his car in for something a lot more natural.

Hammond traverses the UK to explore Britain’s most beautiful rivers. This new, four-part series features the rivers Severn, Test, Clyde and Derwent and explores the historical, ecological and economic importance of each.

Travelling from source to mouth, Hammond reveals the untold stories and variety of character and history of each river.

As he swims, kayaks and walks along these remarkable waterways he meets the people for whom the river is a key part of their lifestyle, either for travel, commerce or fun. And with new shooting styles and technology, the show offers a unique perspective of each river.

History’s Greatest Mysteries’ with Laurence Fishburne – History, Sundays at 8.15pm

Season three examines the top theories surrounding the world’s most enigmatic unsolved mysteries. Hosted and narrated by multi-award winner Laurence Fishburne, each episode unpacks these puzzles with contributions from top historians, authors, scientists, and researchers.

From unsolved crimes to lost and buried treasures, and the deaths and disappearances of famous figures. The show explores possible explanations to some of the world’s most confounding events.

‘History’s Greatest Mysteries’ with Laurence Fishburne airs on History, Sundays at 8.15pm.