List of explorers  

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Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel
Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel

The following is a list of explorers.


Name Nationality Century Main area/s explored
William Adams British 17th Japan
Charles Albanel French 17th Canada
Afonso de Albuquerque Portuguese 16th India
Edwin "Buzz" Aldrin American 20th the Moon
Pêro de Alenquer Portuguese 15th African coast
Benedict Allen British 20th/21st various
Diego de Almagro Spanish 16th Peru, Chile
Francisco de Almeida Portuguese 16th India
Pedro de Alvarado Spanish 16th Mexico, Guatemala, Honduras
Francisco Álvares Portuguese 16th Ethiopia
Jorge Álvares Portuguese 16th China
Roald Amundsen Norwegian early 20th South Pole, Antarctica, Northwest Passage
António de Andrade Portuguese 16th/17th India, Tibet
Fernão Pires de Andrade Portuguese 16th China
Henryk Arctowski Polish 20th Antarctic, South America
Salomon August Andrée Swedish 19th Arctic
Roy Chapman Andrews American 20th China, Mongolia
Neil Armstrong American 20th the Moon (first man on the moon)
Väinö Auer Finnish 20th Tierra del Fuego and Patagonia
Diogo de Azambuja Portuguese 15th West African coast


Name Nationality Century Main area/s explored
George Back British 19th Canadian Arctic khoa
William Baffin British 17th Northwest Passage
Samuel Baker British 19th Africa
Vasco Núñez de Balboa Spanish 16th Panama
Joseph Banks British 18th Newfoundland and Labrador, South Pacific
Giosafat Barbaro Italian 15th Black Sea, Near East
Pêro de Barcelos Portuguese 15th/16th North America
Willem Barentsz Dutch 16th Northeast Passage, Novaya Zemlya
Heinrich Barth German 19th Central and northern Africa
Robert Bartlett Canadian early 20th Arctic
George Bass Australian 18th Australia
Henry Walter Bates British 19th Amazonia
Abu Abdullah Muhammad Ibn Battuta Moroccan 14th Africa, Central Asia, China, Europe, Indian subcontinent, Middle East, Russia, Southeast Asia
Nicolas Baudin French 18th Australia
Fabian Gottlieb von Bellingshausen Baltic German 19th Antarctica
Joseph René Bellot French 19th Arctic
Móric Benyovszky Hungarian 18th northern Pacific Ocean
Vitus Bering Danish 18th northern Pacific Ocean
Hiram Bingham III American 20th Machu Picchu, Peru
Juan Francisco de la Bodega y Quadra Spanish 18th Pacific Northwest
Vittorio Bottego Italian 19th Somalia
Pierre Savorgan de Brazza Italian/French 19th Congo
Saint Brendan Irish 6th Atlantic Ocean
Jim Bridger American 19th Western United States
James Bruce British 18th Algeria, the Middle East, Egypt
William S. Bruce British early 20th Antarctica
Étienne Brûlé French 17th Canada
Lafayette Bunnell American 19th Yosemite Valley
Johann Ludwig Burckhardt Swiss 19th Middle East, Sudan
Robert O'Hara Burke Irish 19th Australia
Richard Francis Burton British 19th East Africa
José de Bustamante y Guerra Spanish 18th Pacific Ocean
Richard E. Byrd American 20th North Pole, Antarctica


Name Nationality Century Main area/s explored
Álvar Núñez Cabeza de Vaca Spanish 16th southwestern United States, Mexico, Argentina
John Cabot Italian/English 15th North American mainland (Canada)
Pedro Álvares Cabral Portuguese 15th/16th Brazil, Madagascar
João Rodrigues Cabrilho Portuguese 16th California
Alvise Cadamosto Italian 15th Cape Verde islands
René Caillé French 19th North Africa
Álvaro Caminha Portuguese 15th São Tomé and Príncipe islands
Pêro Vaz de Caminha Portuguese 15th Brazil
Diogo Cão Portuguese 15th west coast of Africa (including the Congo River)
Hermenegildo de Brito Capelo Portuguese 19th African continent
John Carpini Italian 13th Central Asia
Juan Carrasco Spanish 18th Pacific Northwest
Jan Carstensz Dutch 17th New Guinea coast, Gulf of Carpentaria
Jacques Cartier French 16th St. Lawrence River
René-Robert Cavelier French 17th Mississippi embayment
Thomas Cavendish British 16th Virginia, Pacific coast of Central and South America
Samuel de Champlain French 16th/17th Quebec, Great Lakes
Jean Chardin French 17th Persia, India
Fletcher Christian British 18th Polynesia
Hugh Clapperton British early 19th west and central Africa
William Clark American early 19th western United States
Gonçalo Coelho Portuguese 15th/16th South American coast
Nicolau Coelho Portuguese 15th Brazil
Frank Cole Canadian 20th Sahara
Christopher Columbus Italian 15th/16th Caribbean
George Comer American 19th/20th Arctic
Niccolò Da Conti Italian early 15th India, Southeast Asia
Frederick Cook American 19th/20th Arctic
James Cook British 18th Australasia, Oceania
Francisco Vázquez de Coronado Spanish 16th New Mexico
Diogo Álvares Correia Portuguese 16th Brazil
Gaspar Côrte-Real Portuguese 16th Newfoundland, Greenland
João Côrte-Real Portuguese late 15th Azores, Newfoundland
Miguel Côrte-Real Portuguese 16th Newfoundland, Massachusetts
Hernán Cortés Spanish 16th Mexico
Juan de la Cosa Spanish 15th/16th Caribbean, South America
Thomas Coulter Irish 19th Mexico, Alta California
Jacques-Yves Cousteau French 20th the deep sea
Pêro da Covilhã Portuguese 15th/16th Ethiopia
Tom Crean Irish 20th Antarctica
Andrew Croft English 20th Arctic
Tristão da Cunha Portuguese 16th Tristan da Cunha islands
Jeremy Curl British 20th African continent


Name Nationality Century Main area/s explored
Isaac Davis British 18th Hawaii
Adrien de Gerlache Belgian 19th/20th Antarctica, Arctic
Pierre-Jean De Smet Belgian 19th North America
Bartolomeu Dias Portuguese 15th Africa
Dicuil Irish 8th England, Scotland
Francis Drake British 16th Caribbean


Name Nationality Century Main area/s explored
Gil Eanes Portuguese 15th northwest African coast
Juan Sebastián Elcano Spain 16th completed Ferdinand Magellan's circumnavigation
Francisco de Eliza Spain 18th Strait of Juan de Fuca and Strait of Georgia
Erik the Red Viking 10th Greenland
Leif Ericson Viking early 11th Vinland (Newfoundland)
Pedro Escobar Portuguese 15th São Tomé and Príncipe islands
George Everest British 19th India
Evliya Çelebi Turkish 17th Turkey, Egypt, Africa, Europe


Name Nationality Century Main area/s explored
Ahmad ibn Fadlan Arab 10th Eastern Europe, Middle East, Russia, Scandinavia
Edmund Fanning American 18th/19th Oceania
Ibn Farrukh Andalusian 10th Atlantic Ocean, Canary islands
Percy Harrison Fawcett British 20th Amazon Rainforest
Sir Ranulph Fiennes British 20th/21st Arctic, Antarctica
António Fernandes Portuguese 15th west African coast
Baltazar Fernandes Portuguese 17th Brazil
Duarte Fernandes Portuguese 16th Thailand
Salvador Fidalgo Spanish 18th Pacific Northwest
Matthew Flinders British 18th/19th Australia, Tasmania
Alexander Forbes British 19th California
John Franklin British 19th Northwest Passage
John C. Frémont American 19th Oregon Trail, Sierra Nevada
Marc-Joseph Marion du Fresne French 18th Oceania
Louis de Freycinet French 19th western Australia, Oceania
Martin Frobisher English 16th Northwest Passage, Canada
Ioannis Fokas Greco-Spanish 16th Strait of Juan de Fuca, Canada – United States border
Xu Fu Chinese 3rd century BC Japan
Vivian Fuchs British 20th Antarctica


Name Nationality Century Main area/s explored
Alfons Gabriel Austrian 20th Iran
Dionisio Alcalá Galiano Spanish 18th Pacific Northwest
Yuri Gagarin Russian 20th Earth orbit
Juan Galindo mixed 19th Mesoamerica (Mayan remains)
Estevão da Gama Portuguese 16th Indian Ocean
Paulo da Gama Portuguese 15th sea route from Europe to India
Vasco da Gama Portuguese 15th/16th sea route from Europe to India
Pedro Sarmiento de Gamboa Spanish 16th Solomon Islands
Thomas Gann Irish 19th/20th Mesoamerica (Mayan remains)
Francis Garnier French 19th Mekong River
Pierre Gaultier de Varennes French Canadian 18th North American interior
Romolo Gessi Italian 19th the Nile, Sudan
Ernest Giles Australian 19th central Australia
André Gonçalves Portuguese 15th/16th Brazil
Antão Gonçalves Portuguese 15th west African coast
Lopes Gonçalves Portuguese 15th Atlantic Ocean
James Augustus Grant British 19th eastern Africa
João Grego Portuguese 15th African coast
Juan de Grijalva Spanish 16th Mexico, Nicaragua
Gonzalo Guerrero Spanish 16th Yucatán Peninsula
Charles Gwynn British 19th/20th Sudan


Name Nationality Century Main area/s explored
Hanno the Navigator Carthaginian 6th BCE west African coast
Hannu ancient Egyptian (c.2750 BCE) eastern Africa
Gonzalo López de Haro Spanish 18th Pacific Northwest
Dirk Hartog Dutch 17th western Australian coast
Ahmed Pasha Hassanein Egyptian 20th Oweinat and the Sahara
Ferdinand Vandeveer Hayden American 19th Rocky Mountains and the western United States
Bruno de Heceta Spanish 18th Pacific Northwest
Sven Hedin Swedish 19th/20th Central Asia
Louis Hennepin Belgian/French 17th North American interior
William Lewis Herndon American 19th Amazonia
Bjarni Herjulfsson Viking 10th North America
Thor Heyerdahl Norwegian 20th anthropological ocean voyages
Sir Edmund Hillary New Zealand 20th Mount Everest, Antarctica
Himilco the Navigator Carthaginian 6th BCE northwestern coast of Europe
Clement Hodgkinson British 19th New South Wales (Australia)
Emil Holub Czech 19th Africa
Hong Bao Chinese 15th South Shetland Islands, South Atlantic
Cornelis de Houtman Dutch 16th sea route from Europe to Indonesia
Frederick de Houtman Dutch 16th/17th western Australian coast
William Hovell British 19th southern New South Wales
Henry Hudson British 17th Northwest Passage, Hudson River and Hudson Bay
Alexander von Humboldt German 19th Latin America, Siberia
Hamilton Hume Australian 19th Australian interior
James S. Hutchinson American 20th Sierra Nevada (U.S.)
Hyecho Korean 8th India, Persia and Central Asia


Name Nationality Century Main area/s explored
João Infante Portuguese 15th African coast
Roberto Ivens Portuguese 19th African continent
Helge Ingstad Norwegian 20th Newfoundland, Greenland, Alaska


Name Nationality Century Main area/s explored
James of Ireland Irish 14th Sumatra China
Willem Jansz Dutch 17th Australia (Queensland)
Anthony Jenkinson British 16th Russia, Persia
Friar Julian Hungarian 13th Volga Bulgaria


Name Nationality Century Main area/s explored
Thorfinn Karlsefni Icelandic early 11th Vinland
Johann Karl Ehrenfried Kegel German 19th Kamchatka
George Kennan American 19th/20th Russia
Edmund Kennedy British/Australian 19th Australian interior
Khashkhash Ibn Saeed Ibn Aswad Andalusian 9th Atlantic Ocean (possibly Americas)
Ferdinand Konščak Croatian 18th Baja California peninsula
Pyotr Kozlov Russian early 20th Mongolia, Tibet


Name Nationality Century Main area/s explored
Richard Lemon Lander British early 19th west Africa (Niger and Benue Rivers)
Grigori Ivanovitch Langsdorff Prussian early 19th Brazil
Jean-François de Galaup, comte de La Pérouse French 18th Pacific Rim
Anthony de la Roché British 17th Antarctica
João Fernandes Lavrador Portuguese 15th/16th Labrador
Joseph N. LeConte American 20th Sierra Nevada (U.S.)
Albert von Le Coq German 19th/20th central Asia
John Ledyard American 18th Australasia, Oceania, Russia
Miguel López de Legazpi Spanish 16th Philippines
Ludwig Leichhardt Prussian 19th Australian interior
Jacob Le Maire Dutch 17th South Pacific (Cape Horn, Tonga Islands, Wallis and Futuna)
Gaspar de Lemos Portuguese 15th Brazil
Dragutin Lerman Croatian 19th/20th Congo
Meriwether Lewis American 18th/19th western United States
St. George Littledale British 19th central Asia and North America
David Livingstone British 19th southern and eastern Africa


Name Nationality Century Main area/s explored
Alexander Mackenzie Canadian 18th/19th Canada
Ferdinand Magellan Portuguese 15th/16th circumnavigation
Alessandro Malaspina Italian-Spanish 18th Pacific Ocean
Teoberto Maler German-Italian 19th Mesoamerica (Mayan remains)
George Mallory British early 20th Mount Everest
Lancelotto Malocello Italian 13th/14th Lanzarote (Canary Islands)
Albert Hastings Markham British 19th Arctic
Lourenço Marques Portuguese 16th Mozambique
Álvaro Martins Portuguese 15th Newfoundland, Cape of Good Hope
Pedro Mascarenhas Portuguese 16th Indian Ocean, Diego Garcia
John Minor Maury American 19th Darién Gap
Douglas Mawson Australian 20th Antarctica
Álvaro de Mendaña Spanish 16th Pacific Ocean
Archibald Menzies British 18th/19th Pacific Ocean, circumnavigation
Nicholas Miklouho-Maclay Russian 19th New Guinea
Thomas Mitchell British 19th Australian interior
Richard Mohun American 19th/20th Congo Free State
George Fletcher Moore Irish 19th Australia
John Moresby British 19th New Guinea coast
Henri Mouhot French 19th South East Asia
Francisco Antonio Mourelle Spanish 18th Pacific Northwest and Pacific Ocean
Joaquim Augusto Mouzinho de Albuquerque Portuguese 19th Mozambique


Name Nationality Century Main area/s explored
Gustav Nachtigal German 19th Africa
Fridtjof Nansen Norwegian 19th/20th Arctic
José María Narváez Spanish 18th Pacific Northwest
Nehsi ancient Egyptian 15th BCE Land of Punt
Jean Nicolet French 17th Northwest Territory (United States)
Joseph Nicollet French/American 19th Mississippi and Missouri Rivers
Afanasiy Nikitin Russian 15th India
António Noli Portuguese 15th Cape Verde islands
Adolf Erik Nordenskiöld Finnish/Swedish 19th Arctic
Tenzing Norgay Nepalese 20th Mount Everest
Fernão de Noronha Portuguese 15th/16th Atlantic Ocean
João da Nova Portuguese 16th Atlantic and Indian Oceans
Paulo Dias de Novais Portuguese 16th Angola


Name Nationality Century Main area/s explored
Sebastián de Ocampo Spanish early 16th Caribbean, Gulf of Mexico
Odoric of Pordenone Italian early 14th Persia, India and China
Peter Skene Ogden Canadian early 19th Snake River country, western United States
Juan de Oñate Spanish 16th American Southwest
Francisco de Orellana Spanish 16th South America, Amazon River
John Oxley British early 19th Australia


Name Nationality Century Main area/s explored
Pedro Páez Spanish 16th/17th Ethiopia
Mungo Park British 18th/19th west Africa (Niger River)
William Parry British 19th Arctic
Robert Peary American 19th/20th Arctic
Paul Pelliot French 19th/20th central Asia
Duarte Pacheco Pereira Portuguese 15th Atlantic Ocean, Brazil
Bartolomeu Perestrelo Portuguese 15th Madeira Islands
Juan Pérez Spanish 18th Pacific Northwest
Auguste Piccard Swiss 20th Earth's atmosphere, the deep sea
Jacques Piccard Swiss 20th the deep sea
Zebulon Pike American early 19th Louisiana Purchase (United States)
Alonso Alvarez de Pineda Spanish early 16th Gulf Coast
Serpa Pinto Portuguese 19th southern Africa
Fernão Mendes Pinto Portuguese 16th India, Far East, Japan
Martin Alonzo Pinzón Spanish 15th Caribbean
Vicente Yáñez Pinzón Spanish 15th/16th Caribbean, Brazil
Luís Pires Portuguese 15th abortive voyage to Brazil
Francisco Pizarro Spanish 16th Hispaniola, Panama, Peru
Fernão do Pó Portuguese 15th west African coast
Marco Polo Venetian 13th/14th China, Mongol Empire
Juan Ponce de León Spanish 15th/16th Florida
Peter Pond American 18th/19th Canadian interior
Gaspar de Portolà Spanish 18th Alta and Baja California
John Wesley Powell American 19th western United States
Gavriil Pribylov Russian 18th Pribilof Islands
Nathaniel Hale Pryor American 19th western United States
Nikolai Przhevalsky Russian 19th central Asia
Pytheas ancient Greek 4th BCE northern Europe


Name Nationality Century Main area/s explored
Manuel Quimper Spanish 18th Pacific Northwest
Pedro Fernandes de Queirós Portuguese 16th/17th Oceania


Name Nationality Century Main area/s explored
John Rae British 19th Northwest Passage, Canadian Arctic
Sir Walter Raleigh English 16th/17th Virginia, the Orinoco river
Knud Rasmussen Danish 20th Arctic
Piri Reis Turkish 15th/16th Mediterranean Sea
Matteo Ricci Italian 16th China
Jacob Roggeveen Dutch 18th South Pacific (Easter Island)
Diogo Rodrigues Portuguese 16th Mascarene Islands
Cândido Rondon Brazilian 19th/20th Brazilian interior (Amazon Basin)
James Clark Ross British 19th Arctic, Antarctic
William of Rubruck Flemish 13th century Central Asia
Henry Russell Irish 19th Pyrenees
Ahmad ibn Rustah Persian 10th Russia, Scandinavia, Arabia


Name Nationality Century Main area/s explored
Edward Sabine Irish 19th Arctic
Kira Salak American 20th/21st century Papua New Guinea, Mali, Bhutan
Sándor Kőrösi Csoma Hungarian early 19th Tibet
João de Santarém Portuguese 15th São Tomé and Príncipe islands
Rabban Bar Sauma Turco-Mongol 13th Europe, Middle East
Johann Schiltberger German 15th Central Asia
Willem Schouten Dutch 17th South Pacific (Cape Horn, Tonga Islands, Wallis and Futuna)
Georg August Schweinfurth German/Russian 19th East and Central Africa
Robert Falcon Scott British 19th/20th Antarctica (South Pole)
Scylax of Caryanda ancient Greek 6th BCE Indus River, Indian Ocean, Red Sea
Tibor Sekelj Croat 20th Argentina
Mirko and Stjepan Seljan Croat early 20th Ethiopia, South America
Symon Semeonis Hiberno-Norman 14th Jerusalem, Albania
Alexandre de Serpa Pinto Portuguese 19th African continent
Francisco Serrão Portuguese 16th century Indonesia
Ernest Shackleton British early 20th Antarctica
Eric Shipton British 20th Mount Everest, southern Patagonia
Tanaka Shōsuke Japanese 17th Mexico
Diogo Silves Portuguese 15th Azores
Pêro de Sintra Portuguese 15th west African coast, Sierra Leone
William Smith British early 19th South Shetland Islands
J. Dewey Soper Canadian 20th Canadian Arctic
Hernando de Soto Spanish 16th Central America, southern United States
Martim Afonso de Sousa Portuguese 16th Brazilian interior
John Hanning Speke British 19th eastern Africa
Hans Staden German 16th Brazil
Ed Stafford British 21st Amazon
William Grant Stairs Canadian 19th central Africa
Henry Morton Stanley British 19th eastern Africa
Marc Aurel Stein Hungarian/British 19th/20th central Asia
John Lloyd Stephens American 19th Middle East, Mesoamerica (Mayan remains)
Paweł Strzelecki Polish/British 19th the Americas, Australia (Gippsland)
John McDouall Stuart British Australian 19th Australian interior
Charles Sturt British 19th Australian interior
Otto Sverdrup Norwegian 19th/20th Arctic
Ignacije Szentmartony Croat 18th Amazon River


Name Nationality Century Main area/s explored
Abel Tasman Dutch 17th Australasia, including Tasmania
Jean-Baptiste Tavernier French 17th Persia, India
Pedro Teixeira Portuguese 17th Amazon River
Tristão Vaz Teixeira Portuguese 15th Madeira Islands
David Thompson British 18th/19th Western Canada, Pacific Northwest
Guðríður Þorbjarnardóttir Icelandic c.11th North America
Harold William Tilman British 20th Himalayas, Patagonia
Yermak Timofeyevich Russian 16th Siberia
Tenjiku Tokubei Japanese 17th South East Asia, India
Luis Váez de Torres Spanish or Portuguese 16th/17th Australasia
Nuno Tristão Portuguese 15th west African coast, Guinea-Bissau
Hasekura Tsunenaga Japanese 17th Mexico, Europe


Name Nationality Century Main area/s explored
Andrés de Urdaneta Spanish 16th Manila Galleon route


Name Nationality Century Main area/s explored
Cayetano Valdés Spanish 18th Pacific Northwest
George Vancouver British 18th Pacific coast of North America
Pierre Gaultier de Varennes French Canadian 18th western Canada
Gonçalo Velho Portuguese 15th Azores
Giovanni da Verrazzano Italian early 16th East Coast of the United States
Amerigo Vespucci Italian 15th/16th eastern South American coast, Caribbean
Ruy López de Villalobos Spanish 16th Pacific Ocean, Philippines
Willem de Vlamingh Dutch 17th southwest Australian coast
Maarten Gerritsz Vries Dutch 17th Northwest Pacific (Hokkaido, Sakhalin)


Name Nationality Century Main area/s explored
Jean-Frédéric Waldeck French 19th Mesoamerica (Mayan remains)
Thomas Walker British 18th eastern United States
Wang Dayuan Chinese 14th Southeast Asia, Singapore
Langdon Warner American early 20th the Silk Road
Alfred Wegener German early 20th Greenland
Charles Wilkes American 19th Pacific Ocean
Harry de Windt French 19th/20th Eurasia


Name Nationality Century Main area/s explored
John Young British 18th Hawaii
Sir Francis Younghusband British 19th/20th central Asia
Yermak Timofeyevich Russian 16th Siberia


Name Nationality Century Main area/s explored
João Gonçalves Zarco Portuguese 15th Madeira Islands
Zhang Qian Chinese 2nd BCE central Asia
Xuanzang Chinese 7th Indian subcontinent, Central Asia
Zheng He Chinese Muslim 15th South Asia, Southeast Asia, Middle East, East African coast

See also

Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "List of explorers" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on research by Jan-Willem Geerinck. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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