'Martin Clunes Islands of the Pacific': release date, islands, and everything we know

Martin Clunes
‘Martin Clunes Islands of the Pacific’ is on ITV. (Image credit: ITV )

Martin Clunes Islands of the Pacific sees actor Martin Clunes go on an “epic ocean wide adventure in search of the real Pacific.”

The Doc Martin star’s excursion is inspired by a book he read when he was a child, which was given to him by his father. The book was all about the Kon-Tiki expedition across the Pacific, and ever since, Martin, who opened up to us recently about his next drama series, has longed to follow in the explorers’ footsteps.

Scattered with tens of thousands of islands with coral atolls, jungle-covered mountains and lava-filled volcanoes, the Pacific Ocean is the largest ocean on the planet. Martin embarks on a journey to discover this kaleidoscope of nature, from swimming with sharks to meeting a tribe, all in various islands across the Pacific Ocean.

Here’s everything we know about Martin Clunes Islands of the Pacific… 

'Martin Clunes Islands of the Pacific’ release date 

Episodes will air weekly, with the first episode starting on Thursday, Jan. 13 on ITV at 9pm. 

The final episode airs Thursday, Jan. 27 at 9pm on ITV, bringing this peaceful January viewing to an end.

Where does Martin go in ‘Martin Clunes Islands of the Pacifics’?

Martin, who will be seen later this year in Doc Martin season 10, explores many islands across the Pacific Ocean. Episode one sees him beginning his journey in French Polynesia, where, ITV teases, “the French influence is everywhere — from the currency of francs, to the baguettes sold in the local bakeries. There’s even a vineyard on the island, established by a Frenchman. Martin visits the estate where the owner is developing a new grape suited to the unique growing conditions of Tahiti, and tastes the wine he produces.”

Martin then goes onto Rangiroa, one of the largest atolls in the Pacific, which has a reputation for having the best sea life anywhere in the world. Here, Martin goes to “Shark City” where he swims with black tip reef sharks! However, his swim is soon cut short when the sharks get hungry.

It isn’t all paradise on these islands and atolls though as their existence is under threat from rising sea levels and environmental damage. Martin pays a visit to one atoll, Tetiaroa, trying to improve the environment, all thanks to Hollywood superstar Marlon Brando.

Frank Murphy, executive director of the Tetiaroa Society, revealed: “Marlon Brando bought the island in 1966. He had a dream, and the dream was to fund environmental and scientific programmes, by tourism. He was before his time in lots of things.”

Tetiaroa is also home to one of the world’s most exclusive and first eco-friendly hotels named The Brando and a research station that hosts research scientists.

Finishing his trip to French Polynesia, Martin goes to the furthest island — Marquesas Islands, where he meets a local horseman who tames and trains the local wild horses.

Episode 2 sees Martin travel to the South West Pacific, to the Republic of Vanuatu, on the island of Tanna.

According to ITV: “Vanuatu is consistently ranked the earth’s most disaster-prone nation. All 83 of its islands were born of fire, spewed from a vast faultline in the earth’s crust. And on Tanna, it’s possible to see those terrifying forces still at work.

“Martin climbs to the crater of Mount Yasur, one of the world’s most active volcanoes, which reaches 360 metres above sea level.”

He also meets Chief Jimmy Namry and his nephew Philip, who have a unique spiritual relationship with Mount Yasur. 

Martin then meets the elders of a tribe in the remote village of Yakel, who believe Prince Philip is their god and Martin journeys onto Tonga, which has 170 islands. It is here where Martin discovers the vibrant culture, history and sights of the Tongans and he eventually ends up in the picturesque island of Fiji.

Fiji is home to a range of different cultures, and Martin meets a diverse range of people living on the island, including a singer who is a national treasure of Fiji, and the chief of the Banaban people.

In the city of Nadi, Martin visits the Sri Siva Subramaniya Temple, the largest Hindu temple in the south of the Equator, which is a vivid symbol of Indian life.

Martin adventures to Rabi Island in northern Fiji, where he meets the locals and learns of the rich background and cultures of the island. There’s also an abundance of coconuts, which the younger generation have utilised into a thriving business.

TV tonight Martin and a giant tortoise on the Galápagos Islands

Martin and a giant tortoise on the Galápagos Islands. (Image credit: ITV)

In the final episode, Martin rounds off his Pacific Islands tour with a trip to the Galápagos archipelago, which is famous for its unique animal and plant species. He discovers that sniffer dogs play a crucial role on the islands as they protect against any foreign plants or creatures that could cause boundless damage to the area. 

Martin finds out that even a blackberry, brought over in 1968, caused devastating effects, destroying acres of native trees. In the meantime, he also helps rescue shark pups and measures shells of tortoise hatchlings.

Martin Clunes with a tribe elder from the remote village of Yakel

Martin Clunes with a tribe elder from the remote village of Yakel. (Image credit: ITV)

Is there a trailer?

There’s no trailer out yet for this series, but we’ll update this guide if one is released. 

Grace Morris
Staff Writer

Grace is a digital writer with WhatToWatch.com, where she writes series guides for must-watch shows and the latest TV news. She graduated from Anglia Ruskin University in 2020 with a degree in Writing and Film Studies, which only made her love for creative writing, film and TV grow stronger.

You'll usually find her watching the drama unfold in the latest reality series and much-loved soaps (usually with chocolate by her side!). Grace also likes to explore new places with her friends and family and, of course, watch and read about the latest films and TV series.