Someone got you hooked on documentaries. And just like that, life got more interesting.
More good news?
YouTube is full of must-watch documentaries you can enjoy for free.
Just pick one and settle in, whether you’re watching alone or with someone equally curious (or someone who loves you very, very much).
But where do you start?
What are the best YouTube documentaries — or at least a good starter list?
We’re so glad you asked.
- 18 of the Best YouTube Documentaries
- 1. Enlightenment — Anthony Chene
- 2. Is Anybody Out There? (Alien Life Documentary)
- 3. New Money: The Greatest Wealth Creation Event in History
- 4. A Simpler Way: Crisis as Opportunity (Full Documentary)
- 5. Chris Watts Documentary
- 6. Secrets of the Royal Kitchen
- 7. What did Leonardo da Vinci’s “The Last Supper” really look like?
- 8. The Reality of Truth (Full Film)with Michelle Rodriguez
- 9. Modern Day Miracles (Full Documentary) — CURE International
- 10. The Hidden History of Humanity — Monadic Media
- 11. Kate: The Making of a Modern Queen — Timeline
- 12. Working Online and Traveling the World: Digital Nomads
- 13. The Growing Pains of a Teenage Genius — RealTruth
- 14. American and British Families Swap Lives (Culture Clash Documentary)
- 15. Real Life Psychopaths (Crim Psychology Documentary)
- 16. Dear Zachary: A Letter to a Son about His Father
- 17. Blackfish (Killer Whales)
- 18. Life in a Day (24th of July, 2010)
18 of the Best YouTube Documentaries
If you’re looking for a YouTube documentary that won’t punish you for the time spent, have a listen to any of those listed in this post.
We know you like variety (so do we), so you’ll find an eclectic assortment.
Sample a few, if you like, before you choose one for a full viewing.
The goal here is to find one you’ll enjoy enough to learn from it.
This documentary explores the influence of our beliefs and intentions on our personal reality, using stories from people with different challenging backgrounds.
The overarching theme is the search for enlightenment and how that can transform an ordinary, semi-conscious struggle to survive into a mindful celebration of our true nature.
Whatever you believe about the origins and size of the universe, current technology has enabled us to identify many other Earth-like planets beyond our galaxy.
It’s not only possible but likely that intelligent life developed on some of them as well as on our own planet.
But will we ever make contact with them? And if we do, where will that lead us?
One misunderstood country in the world has become both a magnet and a generator of new wealth.
Learn what that country is and why it attracts and creates more millionaires and billionaires than any other country in the world (including ours).
Legendary investor Dr. Steve Sjuggerud hosts this documentary and explains why he considers it the “greatest moneymaking opportunity of our lifetimes.”
If you’re interested in learning a simpler way of life, enjoy this feature-length documentary from a group in Australia.
In response to overlapping environmental, cultural, and economic crises, they’ve come together to form the Simplicity Institute.
Their goals are to explore and live a simpler, more sustainable lifestyle, and to help others do the same.
Try this one if you’re in the mood for a real crime documentary. Real video footage from the Chris Watts case allows you to watch as the mystery unfolds.
Be aware, though, that this heartbreaking case involves missing children. On the upside, you’ll see the perpetrator get caught and charged with the crime.
Do yourself a favor and resist the temptation to skim the comments before watching.
Follow the crew in the Royal Kitchen as they prepare meals for the House of Windsor.
Former Royal Chef Graham Newbould, who once served as chef on the Royal Yacht Britannia, even recreates the wedding breakfast he served Prince Charles and Princess Diana.
He also provides a fascinating insider view of the day-to-day food at the palace, including the favorite dish of the Royal corgis.
Did you know only 20 percent of Leonardo da Vinci’s original work is still visible? This documentary follows the clues to discover what the painting originally looked like.
If you love a good mystery, follow the host as his investigation leads him to a Belgian abbey, where a mysterious copy of da Vinci may shed new light on the work’s meaning.
The hosts of this documentary take us on a tour around the world to explore how people, groups, and even entire cultures tap into an alternate and truer reality through meditation, spirituality, and plant medicine.
Enjoy the insights from thought leaders such as Deepak Chopra, Bruce Lipton, Ram Dass, Marianne Williamson, and many more.
If you’ve ever witnessed or heard of a miraculous cure or healing, you may enjoy this documentary, which explores miraculous healing in the hospitals of CURE International.
The flawed human staff in these hospitals have witnessed miracles as they applied what they knew to serve all those seeking help and healing within their doors.
Based upon Theosophy (the Secret Doctrine), this documentary explores the evolution of consciousness over the millions of years since Earth’s creation.
Learn more about the secret chronology of human history — from Lemuria and Atlantis to the humans of today. Could the ancient flood (echoed in sacred texts other than the Bible) be a cyclic purge between civilizations?
Take a closer look at the “queen in waiting” — the woman we know as Kate Middleton and as the Duchess of Cambridge, the wife of Prince William.
You’ll see how she’s adapted to her new role and become a beloved member of the royal family.
You’ll also get a sense of the kind of leader she is now and will be when her title changes.
If you’ve ever wanted to become “location independent” with your work, take an inside look at the lives of real digital nomads by watching this documentary.
Thanks to the digital revolution, their number is growing. But, while the world can be their office, their lifestyle isn’t a 24-7 vacation. And there are limitations — as with any job.
Explore them here and learn more about the life before plunging in.
Thirteen-year-old Cameron Thompson is a math genius pursuing an Open University degree in applied mathematics.
In some ways, he’s still a typical boy, but his genius, combined with his awkward social skills, sets him apart from his peers.
What will this mean for him as he matures, looks for meaningful work, and pursues a relationship? And what is it like to be one of his parents or siblings?
In this documentary, you’ll follow families from the UK and the US as they swap lives for a week.
They’ll live in each other’s homes, do each other’s jobs, and experience each other’s social lives in their native cities.
Whether they’ll eat each other’s food is another story. No spoilers. Enjoy the ride.
Around 20 percent of the prison population in the U.S. and the UK are psychopaths.
We still know little about the origin and workings of psychopathy, but Professor Robert Hare — consulted by both the FBI and the British Home Office — is the undisputed expert on the subject.
In this documentary, he reveals new brain-based evidence behind it.
Another heartbreaking tale, this documentary explores the life and tragic death of a father and his parents’ attempt to pass on his legacy to his son. But the tragedy doesn’t end there.
The documentary description is in a language other than English, but the comments provide some clue as to what happens. Ignore them if you’re keen to avoid spoilers.
Follow the captivity story of Tilikum, a killer whale known as much for his endearing traits as for his capacity to kill.
This documentary explores the controversial captivity of killer whales in general, and specifically with regard to Tilikum, who’s taken the lives of several people throughout his career as a performing whale.
The goal of this documentary is to capture — for the benefit of future generations — what life was like on the 24th of July in the year 2010.
To that end, the makers asked people to film their lives and answer a few questions.
They received 4,500 hours of footage from 192 countries — all filmed on that day — and distilled it to one hour and a half, starting with footage from early morning and ending at night. The resulting film is rated PG-13.
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Which of these best documentaries is your favorite?
Now that you have 18 of the best documentaries on YouTube to choose from, which one has the strongest appeal. Try checking them all out on your browser, and see which tabs you decide to keep open.
Then give some thought as to which ones you’re honestly most curious about.
No need to explain why. Something in those documentaries must connect to something in your mental priority deck.
Maybe you’ve always been curious about criminal psychology. Or you might have discovered a new passion for spiritual development or sacred sciences.
Make time for all of them. Who knows what you’ll learn — and what it might lead to.