If there’s one thing that COVID awakened in people, it’s the desire to travel. And, as a result, travel shows are more popular now than ever. Last year, AppleTV+ premiered The Reluctant Traveler with Eugene Levy and earlier this month, Max dropped four episodes of Conan O’Brien’s new travelogue, Conan O’Brien Must Go. It’s not new to have celebrities competing with the experts with their own shows where they travel the world, as everyone from Stanley Tucci, Ewan McGregor and Michael Palin have all had their own series where they visit various spots on planet Earth and take us along with them.

For my part, no matter how much I still love PBS’s Rick Steves and his professional, even-handed approach to traveling, my favorite stranger-in-a-strange-land show is Travel Man. The show premiered in 2015 on British television and there have, so far, been twelve seasons of the show, the most recent season bowing in March in Britain. Seven of the twelve seasons are currently available here on Prime Video and three seasons are available on Peacock.

Travel Man is a spinoff of Gadget Man, a popular British series which featured a close look at a specific innovation in each episode (four seasons are available on Prime Video). Gadget Man featured actor/comedian Richard Ayoade as its host for most of the series, and Ayoade also serves as the host of Travel Man for the first nine seasons of its run.

Ayoade is what makes Travel Man so worth recommending. Having first discovered him on the British comedy series The I.T. Crowd (a Weekly Binge feature), I was keen to see him in other things, so I naturally gravitated to Gadget Man, then to Travel Man, where Ayoade’s particular style and comic genius are allowed to fully flourish.

The format of the show is reflective of Ayoade’s style: he suffers no fools and has little patience. Because of this, he doesn’t want to waste time, so he gives himself just 48 hours to visit each place, and crams as much in as possible in those precious two days. In each episode, Ayoade brings along a different guest, most often a British comedian or actor, with an occasional American movie star (Paul Rudd’s episode is available to watch, but Jon Hamm’s is not, go figure), to equal parts torment and amuse during their whirlwind tourist experience in each location.

While the show cannot and should not be considered a definitive travel guide for any of the places visited, Ayoade does provide helpful budget tips and offers off-the-beaten-path activity suggestions alongside traditional tourist haunts.

The pleasure in watching Travel Man is in Ayoade’s no-nonsense, dry style, which I particularly adore. His invited guest each episode does well to counterbalance Ayoade’s buttoned-up approach, and it’s just as much fun to see Ayoade banter with each travel companion as it is to see him taste a local delicacy. And he is absolutely hilarious.

Yes, there are more comprehensive travel shows, and everybody has their own taste in style and format, but, for me, there’s nothing better or more entertaining than Travel Man, particularly the first nine seasons with Richard Ayoade. If you like travel, and if you like a guide with a dry comic genius and fun guests, look no further than Travel Man. I can’t recommend it enough.