June 18, 2021

Simon Reeve: ‘The Caribbean has incredible history’

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adventurer-Simon-Reeve-BBC-series-Caribbean-Kirsty-Nutkins-563487By Kirsty Nutkins

TV adventurer Simon Reeve discovers the real Caribbean in a brand new BBC2 series

With their palm-fringed white sand beaches and crystal clear waters, the paradise islands of the Caribbean have long been considered the stuff of holiday dreams. But there is far more to these verdant isles than their five-star hotels, as TV adventurer Simon Reeve sets out to prove in a new three-part series for BBC2.

The host of travel documentaries such as Indian Ocean, Tropic Of Cancer and last year’s Sacred Rivers With Simon Reeve crosses the Dominican Republic, Haiti, Puerto Rico and Barbados, among others, to shed light on this extraordinary region and some of the most pressing issues facing its people.

“The Caribbean has an incredible history, extraordinary characters and also some of the most extreme and dangerous places on the planet,” says Simon, 42.

“We always try to include the light and the shade on my journeys, so we don’t shy away from the problems of the Caribbean region, and that took me into some pretty bizarre and terrifying situations.”

I’m learning and discovering new things every single day we’re on the road
Simon Reeve
The presenter reveals that, while filming in Honduras, he visited the scene of a murder of two policemen, a memory that has haunted him since.

“We were in San Pedro Sula, the most violent city in the world outside of a war zone. Two local cops were driving home from work when they were sprayed with bullets. That was pretty shocking,” he says.

“There were just a few other people with cameras there, but it wasn’t really national news in Honduras because it’s something that’s happening regularly. Part of this series is about trying to understand why countries like this are being ravaged by violence.”

Simon begins his journey in episode one on the Caribbean island of Hispaniola, travelling from the Dominican Republic with its idyllic scenery to Haiti, the poorest country in the Western hemisphere, before reaching Puerto Rico, an island on the cusp of becoming America’s 51st State.

In episode two, he journeys on to Barbados, one of the wealthiest islands in the Caribbean and a playground for the rich and famous, to learn how the influx of tourists is forcing locals off Barbados’ most desirable beaches.

Asked what his personal highlight was from filming and Simon recalls the heart-stopping moment he took off in a flying boat.

“Right at the start of the series, in the Dominican Republic, I took a ride in a flying-dinghy. We raced across the water and then soared into the sky, circling a beautiful beach and the stunning Caribbean Sea. That was an experience to treasure.”

Simon, who is also a best-selling author of books on international terrorism, modern history and travel, has undertaken a whole host of extraordinary journeys and challenges in the course of his career, including travelling around the world three times for the BBC series Equator.

“I’m learning and discovering new things every single day we’re on the road; that’s one of the many things I love about travelling and about my job,” he smiles.

IMAGE: adventurer, Simon Reeve, BBC, series, Caribbean, Kirsty NutkinsBBC

For more on this story go to: http://www.express.co.uk/life-style/life/563487/Caribbean-presenter-Simon-Reeve-interview

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