Pilgrimage: The Road To Istanbul celebrities line up and start date

Pilgrimage 2020 line up, number of episodes, next episode air date

A line up of celebrities head to Istanbul in a brand new series of Pilgrimage on BBC Two.


Hot on the heels of the first two series that saw familiar faces embark on a journey of discovery, to Santiago and Rome, Pilgrimage returns to BBC Two for a third outing this spring.

Seven new famous faces will take to the open road, as they follow a completely different pilgrimage in Pilgrimage: The Road To Istanbul.

The well known personalities taking part include journalist Adrian Chiles, a converted Catholic; former politician Edwina Currie, a lapsed Jew; Olympian Fatima Whitbread, a practicing Christian and broadcaster Mim Shaikh and television presenter Amar Latif, both Muslims.

They’re joined by two confirmed atheists, comedian Dom Joly and actor Pauline McLynn.

The start date for Pilgrimage has been confirmed for Friday, March 27 at 9PM on BBC Two. Episodes will air weekly.

The group will live as simple pilgrims following an ancient military route to the historic city of Istanbul, which has been transformed into a modern-day path of peace.


A teaser from the BBC reveals: “Formed just over ten years ago and designed to promote tolerance for all faiths and cultures, Pilgrimage: The Road To Istanbul will be a journey of discovery and adventure for our pilgrims.

“Donning backpacks and walking boots, they’ll stay in basic hostels, sleep in shared dorms, and follow a largely untrodden route. Starting in Serbia’s capital city Belgrade, the pilgrims will travel through Bulgaria and the mountainous Balkans, before crossing the border into Turkey, with their goal of reaching Istanbul and the magnificent Suleymaniye Mosque.”

The celebs will cover over 1,000 kilometres across two weeks.

In the first episode, the seven pilgrims arrive in Belgrade, Serbia, and find out for the first time who they will be sharing their pilgrim adventure with.

Leaving the city behind, the pilgrims head into the countryside and away from the hustle and bustle. Relying on the Sultans Trail app to help guide them across Europe, Adrian (a converted Catholic) and Mim (a practicing Muslim) are the first to plot their way, as they look for the fortified Manasija monastery, hidden in the hills.


As they progress through the Serbian countryside Amar, who has been blind since the age of 18, leads the pilgrims in the ancient tradition of scrumping.

Pilgrimage: The Road To Istanbul will air in three, hour-long episodes on BBC Two from Friday, March 27th.

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