Famous Explorers

Famous Explorers - Throughout History

Man has been exploring almost as long as he's existed. From the early movements of prehistoric man to the sailors of the 16th century and on to the astronauts of the 20th Century. From the exploration of America (the New World), to the depths of the seas and even to the Moon and Mars, exploration continues to fascinate us and increase our knowledge in equal measure.

Facts about some of the more famous explorers can be found below.

Famous Explorers - Fast Fun Facts for Kids !

1: Neil Armstrong - Born 1930 - died 2012. Famous for being the first man to set foot on the moon. More Facts about

2: Vasco Nunez de Balboa - Born c1475 - died 1519. The first European to lead an expedition, via the New World, to see the Pacific Ocean. More Facts about

3: Daniel Boone - Born 1734 - died 1820. Famous for exploring, and establishing the first settlement in, Kentucky. More Facts about


4: John Cabot - Born c1450 - died 1498. The second European (After Columbus) to find North America. More Facts about

5: Jacques Cartier - Born 1491 - died 1557. Famous for his exploration of the St. Lawrence River and naming Canada. More Facts about

6: William Clark - Born 1770 - died 1838. Co-Leader of the 'Lewis and Clark Expedition'. More Facts about

7: Christopher Columbus - Born 1451 - died 1506. Famous for his expeditions to the New World in 1492. More Facts about

8: James Cook - Born 1728 - died 1779. The English explorer famous for his exploration of the east coast of Australia. More Facts about

9: Hernan Cortes - Born 1485 - died 1547. The Spanish Explorer and Conquistador who conquered the Aztecs. More Facts about

10: Francis Drake - Born c1540/4 - died 1596. The first Englishman to circumnavigate the world. More Facts about

11. Leif Erikson - Born c970 - died c1020. Famous for being the first European to visit America. More Facts about

12: Martin Frobisher: Born c1535/9 - died 1594. Famous for his exploration of the Labrador Coast and discovering Frobisher Bay. More Facts about

13: Yuri Gagarin - Born 1934 - died 1968. The first human to travel into outer space and orbit the Earth. More Facts about

14: Vasco da Gama - Born c1460 - died 1524. The first European to reach India by sea. More Facts about

15: Humphrey Gilbert - Born c1539 - died 1583. Famous for his thesis on the existence of the fabled North West Passage. More Facts about

16: Richard Hawkins - Born c1562 - died 1622. Famous for his written description of his expedition in 1593. More Facts about

17: Henry Hudson - Born c1565 - died 1611. The English explorer who discovered the strait and the bay which now bear his name. More Facts about

18: Louis Joliet - Born 1645 - died 1700. The Canadian explorer who headed an expedition to explore the Mississippi River. More Facts about

19: Juan Ponce de Leon - Born c1460/74 – Died July 1521. Famous for being the first European to land in Florida. More facts about

20: Meriwether Lewis - Born 1774 - died 1809. Leader of the ‘Lewis & Clark Expedition’. More Facts about

21: David Livingstone - Born 1813 - died 1873. A Scottish explorer famous for his exploration of Africa. More Facts about

22: Ferdinand Magellan - Born 1480 - died 1521. A prominent member of the expedition that led to the first circumnavigation of the world. More Facts about

23: Francisco Pizarro - Born c1471/6 – died 1541. Famous for conquering the Incan Empire and founding Lima. More facts about

24: Marco Polo - Born c1254 - died 1324. Famous for the record of his travels throughout Asia and China. More Facts about

25: Walter Raleigh - Born c1552 - died 1618. Famous for being a favourite of Queen Elizabeth I and starting the first English settlement in America. More Facts about

26: Sacagawea - Born c1788 - died 1812. A member of the ‘Lewis & Clark Expedition’. More Facts about

27: Robert Falcon Scott - Born 1868 - died 1912. Famous for his expeditions to Antarctica. More Facts about

28: Hernando de Soto - Born c1496 - died 1542. A Spanish explorer who became the first European to cross the Mississippi River. More Facts about

29: Abel Tasman - Born 1603 - died 1659 A Dutch explorer who became the first European to see the South Island of New Zealand. More Facts about

30: Giovanni da Verrazzano - Born 1485 - died 1528. An Italian born explorer who discovered present day New York. More Facts about

31: Amerigo Vespucci - Born 1454 - died 1512. An Italian explorer whose exploration of South America resulted in it being named after him. More Facts about

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