Exploring Bethlehem The Travel Show


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Exploring Bethlehem

The Travel Show team is at the Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem with a blind backpacker who is on a mission to explore the globe through touch and sound.


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LineFromTo

Meanwhile, the daily Star has some

alternative advice to keeping the

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bug at bay.

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Now on BBC News,

it's the Travel Show.

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This week: on The Travel Show, we

catch up with our blind backpacker

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is the rise in Bethlehem.

This is

the place where Jesus was born.

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Simon is here with his top tips for

travelling by train across Europe

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and I am in Paris seeing the city of

light turning into an all-night

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party.

The number of people is just

crazy, we are talking about 100,000

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people. 800,000.

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First up, we are on the road with a

backpacker who has clocked up more

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than 120 countries and has done all

that without being able to see.

My

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name is Tony, I am from England, I

am totally blind and severely deaf

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and I travelling around the world,

trying to visit every country.

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Previously we join him as he

explored Jerusalem. Very smooth. But

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today he heads into Palestinian

territories to make his way into the

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holy town of Bethlehem.

I am now at

the checkpoint between Jerusalem and

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Bethlehem. Walking across the

checkpoint and go to the Wailing

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Wall. Going through the checkpoint

is a little bit complicated.

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Slightly more complicated and

confusing than I thought. And then

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sought of trying to follow other

people and people pushing me from

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one way to the other. I would say we

are in the Palestinian side, the

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Palestinian territories. It is quite

exhilarating.

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As you come out the tunnel into the

taxi area, where the wall is, you

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can hear people talking, you can

smell food and coffee and that is

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quite loud and interesting. Can you

show me to a taxi? Church of the

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Nativity.

OK. I will take you for a

photograph on the wall.

I will take

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it with my camera. OK, cool.

Are you

happy? All ways.

How big is the

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world? It is big.

Ten metres? It is

large. Tony, welcome to Bethlehem.

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You want to go to the church? The

Church of the Nativity.

OK. All this

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way on the wall, you have a lot of

Banksy on the wall.

I am feeling

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excited to be in Bethlehem, a new

city, a Newtown, new experiences.

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Driving through Bethlehem, along the

wall, it has given me a brief

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glimpse of how long the ball can be.

It certainly feels quite long,

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driving along here. In my mind it

seemed quite impressive. I guess it

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is quite scary to a lot of people.

Here is the Church, Tony.

I just

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called to let them know I am still

coming. Hello, we are at the church.

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Hello? Hello?

Give it to me I will

call them. Hello. One minute and

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they will come here.

Thank you,

Mohamed.

Hi, Tony.

Hi, Adam. Good to

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meet you. Looking forward to seeing

your place.

Yes, my plays. How many

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countries have you visited before?

I

have visited 124 countries.

Oh, my

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God, yes, nice. Hill at all like

Alibaba. -- you are like. Have you

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done much travelling? No, just here.

It is not easy to move or to travel

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in another country. So he get

travellers to come to you. Yes. You

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have steps here.

In theory, you stay

for free here. You live in a castle.

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Yes.

A used a website. You find

people on it. And if they want to

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meet travellers will want to travel,

that is how it works. This is home.

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We have landed. Thanks. I have had a

range of experiences. I have slept

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on floors, mattresses like these,

couches, and in Africa, in a heart

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where the toilet is outside and it

is a hole on the ground. -- in the

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ground. I do not see the dirt, the

danger, I just get on with it. You

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are meeting the people, the local

hosts and they are sharing their

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food, culture and knowledge,

whatever they can offer you and

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hopefully you make friends.

Good

night and good dreams.

And to you.

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People think, oh, being blind us be

terrible but they do not understand

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it, they do not know what they are

talking about. I am so lucky. I am

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leading a brilliant light. I go from

country to country, I can go

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whereupon two, very few

restrictions. The come ham and you

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see people, and they can see but

they cannot go places.

You want

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directions? You go directly this

way.

Just straight. OK.

I wish you

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be happy and luck in your life.

OK

thank you. Good to meet you, Adam.

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This is the entrance to the church?

Yes stop you can go in that,

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straight.

OK, thank you. I can

roughly hear a voice but it is a bit

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disconcerting echo. It splits the

sound and it takes away the

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direction. We will get there. It

cannot be far. A big metal thing

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with studs which could be... Yes, it

is a gate. Oh, there is oil,

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candles. It has a waxy smell.

Finding the entrance is like

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reaching my goal, reaching my target

and anything else after this is a

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bonus.

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I think they have started singing,

it is louder so I need to get closer

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to these because they will be a lot

of energy involved and I will try to

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get closer and closer and eventually

use bike came to pick out the steps.

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A guide held me down. SINGING.

Realising I was the only person to

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get close to hear that makes me feel

very privileged, very warm inside. I

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am absolutely buzzing after that.

The energy is incredible. That was

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cool just to be here for that if

nothing else.

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It is quite crowded going down the

steps. It is very deep. My goodness.

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From the fire into the furnace. It

is a very hot in here. I guessing

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the rack candles and more people

coming in.

This is my hand. This is

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the place where Jesus was born. This

is the start were he was born. Kneel

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down, more, more, more. Kneel down.

You can touch the place where Jesus

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was born. This is the star, it has

14 points.

It is the star of David.

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Marble? No, it is a silver. The

ground is marble. This is where

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Jesus was born. You feel it?

This is

the grotto.

Yes, he was born here.

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It is not OK like this. Let me help

you a little bit. Like this, you can

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take a photograph.

A very humbling

experience. Being in a place where

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one might argue history occurred

2000 years or so ago. So visiting

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the church, the smells, the sounds,

that is what makes travelling for me

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special. I travel by myself because

it is my challenge. It is like

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climbing a mountain. You think it is

difficult, it is a struggle but you

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get to the top and, yes, I have made

it. It is magical. And that is what

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it is all about, broadens my

horizons and Helsby come a better

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person hopefully. Helps me.

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Still to come on the travel show. I

am in the French capital, Paris, for

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its bustling festival of light. --

dazzling.

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Welcome to Manchester airport and

the slice of the show that tackles

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your questions about getting the

best out of trouble. Coming up, the

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merits of a trip to Sri Lanka during

monsoon season and how to get from

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north-west England to south-east

Europe by train. First, work is

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beginning on Southeast Asia's

leading high-speed rail project from

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Kuala Lumpur to Singapore. When it

opens in 2026 it should reduce the

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journey time to just 90 minutes. At

present it takes seven hours to

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reach the Singapore border from the

Malaysia capital. At this time of

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year many people are heading south

from Europe to Australia and facing

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this problem. I am helping my

elderly parent to apply for a

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shortstay tourist visas to Australia

but I am increase -- confused about

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which one to use. Many people plan a

holiday, a business trip or a family

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visit and all they need is an easy

is utter. And electronically stored

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trouble authority. The application

process to visit Australia is quick

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and easy and confirmation is

normally given within a few minutes.

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VE visitor is valid for one year for

stays of up to three months and it

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is free unless you inadvertently go

through a website that seeks to

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divert visitors from the official

government side and charges fees

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while adding no value. So look for

border .gov.au to be certain it is

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the official scientific and Sri

Lanka in May.

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While it is perfectly possible to

enjoy Sri Lanka in May, I would

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recommend you choose another time of

year to visit this lovely Indian

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Ocean island. Manias when the

south-west monsoon begins, bringing

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heavy rain and humidity. Agreed it

also coincides with the dry season

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in the north and east of the island

but I prefer to be in Sri Lanka

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between December and March when

highlights, concentrated in the

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south-west quadrant, a relatively

cool and dry. Aside, May is a

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wonderful time to be in the

Mediterranean, particularly on a

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Greek island. And speaking of

Greece, we have this question.

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From Manchester you can happily

reach El grade in Serbia by train,

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going via London, Paris, Munich and

Croatia. From here, however it gets

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Rob lamented that it you can get as

far as the Greek border by train but

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from there you are likely be

transferred via bus to Thessaloniki,

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a city which I strongly recommend

you explore. From there to Athens,

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trains are fast and cheap. Whether

you are contemplating a trip to the

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nation next door or the ends of the

earth, I am here to help. E-mail

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your question to the address on the

screen. I will do my best to find

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you an answer. From me, Simon

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you an answer. From me, Simon

Calder, the gullible guru, see you

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you an answer. From me, Simon

Calder, the gullible guru, see you

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next dash -- the global guru.

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Calder, the gullible guru, see you

next dash -- the global guru.

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Calder, the gullible guru, see you

next dash -- the global guru.

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Finally, I am in Paris where the

city has been celebrating. E.g. The

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city of lights gets even brighter as

artist 's and performers light up

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Paris with free events from sunsets

sunrise for one night only. The

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festival takes over the whole city.

I have come down to the river for a

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behind-the-scenes look at rehearsals

for one of this year's most

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eye-catching installations. The

theme of the event is working

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together. And it is all about

getting Corinthians and tourists

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alike involved in the art. When it

is up and running, this giant

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installation will give visitors a

chance to send a message across the

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city.

Altogether we have 42 letters

because it 42 is the answer to

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everything. People have an app and

there they can see a list of topics.

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For each hour of the night, from

seven p.m. Until seven a.m. We have

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a single topic and people can make

suggestions, according to this

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topic. The suggestion with the most

votes wins.

And moving these giant

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letters takes quite a knack, as I

discovered when I tried to move just

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one. I think I'm picking up a life

skill here.

Make it straight. Make

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it completely parallel to the

direction.

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As the on the night the letters came

to life and I decided to make my own

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suggestion for the first phase of

the evening.

You download the app

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and you can either vote for the next

phrase to appear on the bank or you

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can create your own. I will go for

Allons-Y. My suggestion did not

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quite make it. This was what the

Peruvians preferred. -- Parisians.

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Since it began in Paris, the white

knight ID has spread to nearly 30

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cities around the world. And back in

its birthplace, it is still as

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popular as ever.

The number of

people going is crazy. We are

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talking about 800,000 people. You

can feel it. On one side you have

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walking and contemplating the city

and on the other side you have the

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artistic project. I think this is

why it is so famous. And it

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certainly seems to have worked.

There are over 150 events on

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throughout the night and every venue

we went to was packed.

The most

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popular events are the ones that a

more immersive. I enjoyed this quite

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serene exhibition about European

rail travel. It is a soundscape that

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has been composed to evoke the

history of rail. And with the smoke

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it is quite atmospheric. The whole

of Paris seems to come together for

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this event with restaurants, bars

and public transport staying open

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through the night. For those in it

for the long haul. If you are hardy

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you can party until seven a.m. But I

am not quite able to make it that

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far. It is past one a.m. And this

party is showing no signs of letting

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up. It is the end of this week 's

travel show and coming up next

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week... Henry's in Australia's red

Centre to find out how a ban on

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climbing the sacred side of Uluru

could affect tourism in the area.

At

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the moment, tourist are allowed to

go up to the peak. That is about to

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change.

Join us then if you can. In

the meantime, don't forget you can

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keep up with us on the road and in

real-time by signing up to our

0:22:400:22:45

social media needs, details from

which are on the screen right now.

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From me and the rest of the team

here in Paris, it is goodbye.

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The Travel Show team is at The Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem with a blind backpacker who is on a mission to explore the globe through touch and sound. Christa is in Paris to take part in an all-night festival of lights, plus Simon Calder's back with advice and tips for travellers.