The Neanderthals: Tracking Our Ancestors

Who were the Neanderthals, where did they come from, and why did they go extinct? Follow a team of paleoanthropologists from France and England as they travel throughout Europe to find evidence of our long lost ancestors.

Long before Homo Sapiens spread throughout earth, the Neanderthals lived in Eurasia. To track them, the team uses breakthrough archaeological methods to survey ruins and unlock the mysterious Neanderthal fossils. By shedding new light on the Neanderthal evolutionary history, our ancestors might become less of a mystery.

They had everything they needed to survive: the meat of prey animals, edible wild plants, water and wood for cooking and heating. How did these early humans develop over almost 300,000 years? What were their lives like before they became extinct? – To scientists, investigating these questions are paramount to understanding natural history. Did the Neanderthals have culture, languages and societies? How intelligent were they, and what sort of survival skills did they have?

The Neanderthals settled on land that had only recently been covered by glaciers, and went extinct about 30,000 years ago – but at one time, they formed the largest group in an area that stretched from northern France to the Belgian coast and from the Channel Islands to southern England. What happened? Explore northern Europe with the team, as we track the footprints of the Neanderthals.

The Neanderthals: Tracking Our Ancestors
  • Info
  • Release date2019
  • Full runtime
  • Director(s)Rob Hope, Pascal Cuissot
  • Production companyARTE France