The Ganges is like no other river on Earth. It brings life to hundreds of millions of people across India.
For a billion Hindus, it’s the immortal Mother Goddess who will wash away a lifetime of sins.
But India is changing, taking its place as one of the world’s great superpowers and the future of the Ganges hangs in the balance.
In this entertaining and illuminating three-part series, Sue Perkins goes on an extraordinary journey, spanning more than 1,500 miles, from the Ganges’ source high up in the Himalayas to the Bay of Bengal.
In this first episode, she begins her odyssey in the highest mountains on the planet.
She treks to the source of the Ganges, meeting hermits and the wise and wandering holy people that call this sacred landscape home.
One hundred and sixty miles downstream Sue arrives in Rishikesh, a town that has long been the gateway to the land of the gods and drawn holy men and seekers of truth since time immemorial. Now it’s an all-you-can-eat buffet of eastern mysticism.
Sue then arrives at the holy city of Haridwar, where the Ganges finally leaves the mountains and flows into the plains.
The Ganges With Sue Perkins, BBC1, Thursday, 9pm