Explorers

Round the world journeys

Breitling Orbiter 3 was fuelled by propane gas.Breitling Orbiter 3 was fuelled by propane gas.In 1519, a fleet of ships organized by Ferdinand Magellan set off from Spain. In 1522, the last surviving ship of the fleet, captained by Juan Sebastián Elcano, made it home to Spain, having completed the first circumnavigation of the world. Magellan himself had been killed in the Philippines. Nearly 60 years was to pass before the feat was repeated, this time by Sir Francis Drake. Since then, people have sailed, flown, cycled or even walked around the world. In 1999, Bertrand Piccard and Brian Jones made the first non-stop balloon flight around the world in the Breitling Orbiter 3.
They completed the trip in just under 20 days.


A portrait of Sir Francis DrakeA portrait of Sir Francis Drake

Francis Drake

In 1580, Englishman Francis Drake became the second man, after Ferdinand Magellan, to circumnavigate the globe. He set off across the Atlantic Ocean in 1577, with a fleet of five ships. His flagship was the Pelican, which he renamed the Golden Hind mid-voyage. Drake successfully navigated the Strait of Magellan, near the tip of South America, then sailed up the west coast of South America, raiding many Spanish ports en route. Having stolen countless valuable treasures, he stopped near modern-day San Francisco (in Drakes Bay, California) to repair his ship—and claim the land, which he called Nova Albion, for the English Crown.

The first woman to sail around the world was Frenchwoman Jeanne Baret, in 1766–69. She made the journey disguised as a man by enlisting as a valet and personal assistant.

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