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Sam Neill on a rocky beach

Pacific with Sam Neill sees the Jurassic Park actor taking a tour around some of the planet's most spectacular places

In Pacific with Sam Neill, the New Zealand-raised actor walks in the footsteps of Captain James Cook.

It’s 250 years since Captain Cook embarked on the first of three important sea voyages to the uncharted Pacific region.

In the first of this fascinating series, one-time Peaky Blinders actor Sam meets inhabitants of places where Cook made land, people of the Pacific whose ancestors’ lives were changed forever by his arrival.

Sam Neill with pacific islander

Sam meets the locals

Sam’s first stop is the beautiful paradise island of Tahiti. And it doesn’t take a stretch of the imagination to picture the island and its people as they must have appeared to Cook and his crew; starved, unwashed and lice-infested. It really did seem as if they had found paradise.

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How warm was their welcome really? And why is it that, despite Cook’s claim of the island on behalf of his King, Tahiti was later - and is still to this day - claimed as part of French Polynesia?

TV Times rating: ****