Top Ten Most Watched TV Shows of 2023

A year of royal events, baking and drama are highlighted in the most watched TV shows of 2023.

With a mix of royalty, drama, and reality, the top ten most-watched TV shows of the year offer a snapshot into the nation’s viewing habits.

The BBC takes seven of the top ten spots, ITV the two and Channel 4 the one. The audience figures include those who watched live and on catch up in the 28 days after airing (where data is available).

2023’s Most Watched TV Shows

1. The Coronation of King and Queen Camilla (BBC) – 12.8 million viewers

The year was marked by the historic coronation of The King and Queen Camilla, a grand event that drew the largest TV audience. The ceremony, steeped in tradition and grandeur, was a spectacle that united the nation in front of their screens.

 

2. Happy Valley (BBC) – 11.9 million viewers

BBC’s gripping drama series, Happy Valley, held viewers on the edge of their seats, securing a strong second place. The compelling storyline and stellar performances were a hit for the show’s third and final series.

Eurovision Song Contest 2023 hosts Graham Norton, Alesha Dixon, Julia Sanina and Hannah Waddingham.
Eurovision Song Contest 2023 hosts Graham Norton, Alesha Dixon, Julia Sanina and Hannah Waddingham. Credit: BBC/Ray Burmiston

3. Eurovision Song Contest (BBC) – 10.7 million viewers

The Eurovision Song Contest continued to be a highlight of the entertainment calendar, with millions tuning in for the show held in the UK at the Liverpool Arena.

 

4. The Great British Bake Off (Channel 4) – 9.7 million viewers

Moving over to Channel 4, The Great British Bake Off maintained its status as a national favourite. The show’s mix of humour, heart-warming moments, and mouth-watering bakes keeps viewers coming back for more.

 

5. I’m a Celebrity… Get Me Out of Here! (ITV) – 9.0 million viewers

ITV’s reality show, I’m a Celebrity… Get Me Out of Here!, continued to attract a significant audience, with celebrities facing jungle challenges and trials this year including Jamie Lynn Spears, Nigel Farage and Sam Thompson.

I'm a Celebrity 2023 cast group photo

6. Planet Earth III (BBC) – 8.9 million viewers

The stunning visuals and insightful commentary of Planet Earth III brought the wonders of the natural world into UK living rooms as Sir David Attenborough returned to present the iconic documentary series.

 

7. Strictly Come Dancing (BBC) – 8.5 million viewers

The glitz and glamour of Strictly Come Dancing kept the nation dancing along, with its combination of celebrity performances and professional choreography concluded last weekend with the winners crowned.

 

8. Death in Paradise (BBC) – 8.3 million viewers

BBC’s Death in Paradise continued to captivate audiences with its unique blend of murder mystery and light-hearted drama set in a picturesque location. The show will return soon for a Christmas special and brand new series in the new year.

Death in Paradise cast
Death in Paradise cast

9. Unforgotten (ITV) – 8.2 million viewers

ITV’s Unforgotten, a crime drama series, gripped viewers with its intricate plots and deep character studies, proving the genre’s lasting appeal.

 

10. Wild Isles (BBC) – 8.2 million viewers

Rounding off the top ten, Wild Isles offered an awe-inspiring look at the wildlife and natural beauty of the British Isles, showcasing the extraordinary diversity on our doorstep.