Lindblad Expeditions / National Geographic
EXPLORATIONS – A Lindblad Expeditions Blog


Atlas of Remote Islands, by Judith Schalansky

Atlas of Remote Islands

The beautifully designed Atlas of Remote Islands arrived in our New York offices last week and sat on my desk for a few days. Colleagues who dropped by invariably picked it up and paged through it, commenting on the book’s wonderful hand drawn maps and interesting anecdotes about each island.
The tagline on the book’s cover is ‘Fifty Islands I Have Never Set Foot on and Never Will,’ though I suspect that many of our Facebook fans and blog readers have landed on at least one of the islands featured in the book. Our Antarctic cruises aboard National Geographic Explorer make a stop at Deception Island, and many guests fly to Easter Island after their exploration in Antarctica. Our upcoming Epic 70 voyage will be the first time many of our naturalists explore Ascension Island, which, according to Atlas of Remote Islands, entered into the space race in January of 1960 and has an eclectic past that includes spies, naturalists and NASA.
We wondered how to best get these books into the hands of our blog’s readers, and took a cue from National Geographic’s Intelligent Traveler blog.
We have three free copies to give away. If you’d like one, simply tell us in the comments below which remote island you’d most like to explore and why. We’ll choose three by Friday at noon, December 17th and email the winners.
And if exploring islands intrigues you, be sure to check out our new expedition, An Island Odyssey: Azores, Madeira & Channel Isles.

Fraser’s Penguins: A Journey to the Future in Antarctica

Ecologist Bill Frasier is in a rare position to judge changes in Antarctic penguin colonies. He’s been measuring and researching penguins and their predators around Palmer Research Station for over 35 years. Over the austral summer of 2005-06, journalist Fen Montaigne worked alongside Frasier collecting data on Antarctic wildlife. Montaigne has recently released a book on the experience, Fraser’s Penguins: A Journey to the Future in Antarctica. His book was reviewed in The New York Times this week.
Our guests aboard National Geographic Explorer had the chance to get a special tour of the Palmer Station during our Antarctica cruise. Our Undersea Specialist and Expedition Leader Lisa Trotter had recently been the facilities manager. Take a look at Fraser’s Penguins, and if you’d like to see them with your own eyes, check out our Antarctica cruises.


Tuatara, a Singular, New Zealand Reptile

Meet the tuatara, a rare New Zealand reptile that scientists have dubbed a ‘living fossil.’ Researchers have found that it evolves at lightning speed but is also being biologically representative of long extinct species. The reptiles’ eggs are incubated in the ground for over a year, and these animals routinely grow to be 16 inches long of the course of their 100 year lifespan.
The New York Times ran an excellent article on the tuatara last month, but if you’re seeing one in person, you’ll have to make the trip to New Zealand. Guests on our New Zealand cruise will have a chance of seeing in the wild on our afternoon excursion out of Wellington to the ‘Zealandia’ sanctuary.

Photos of the Week: December 13th

Our favorite photos have been selected and the Photos of the Week are online. They come from our Galápagos cruises and National Geographic Explorer currently cruising Antarctica.


Crossing the Antarctic Circle

Many of our Antarctica g
uests get to celebrate landing on their 7th continent, and crossing the Antarctic Circle is one of our favorite milestones on the trip. This video comes back from National Geographic Explorer, shot last week during their Antarctica cruise.

Audubon’s book ‘Birds of America’ Sells at Auction for $10.3 million

Audubon Birds of America

Time to dig through your  storage unit to see if any enormous old books are hanging around.
The Birds of America
, written and illustrated by John James Audubon and printed in the 1830s sold today at auction for over $10 million. It is one of the rarest books and today became the most expensive. And how did Audubon manage these extremely accurate, detailed drawings of the birds?
"He was one of the most rabid hunters you would have ever found. All of the birds he illustrated in Birds of America he killed," says Mr Vedder. "He would rig them with wire in order to pose them."

Dispatch from Our Ongoing Galapagos Photo Expedition

Lindblad-National Geographic certified Photo Instructor Mike Nolan narrates this video, shot during a photo expedition currently taking place in Galápagos.

Lindblad Expeditions and Miraval Arizona Collaboration

Miraval Arizona, regarded as one of the premier holistic retreats in the world, announced last week their upcoming collaborations with National Geographic and us at Lindblad Expeditions. Miraval will be offering National Geographic Photography workshops at their resort, and for those interested in a more immersive adventure, they’ll be dispatching a Miraval specialist to join us on the upcoming expedition An Island Odyssey aboard National Geographic Explorer. As part of our new Skills@Sea program, the specialist will offer classes on Breathwork, Yoga, Meditation and Mindful Stress Mastery. Learn more about the collaboration or the May expedition, An Island Odyssey.

Photos of the Week: December 3

Check out the new Photos of the Week from expedition staff and guests aboard our Galápagos cruise, Antarctica cruise, Costa Rica & Panama cruise and Amazon cruise.

Two Crossings of the Southern Ocean; or, Lifeboat vs National Geographic Explorer

Click the image to see more.
Naturalist Steve MacLean spent some time reflecting about his recent crossing of the Southern Ocean aboard National Geographic Explorer. Specifically, he made to handy chart comparing his crossing to that of the crew of the James B. Caird, one of the boats off Endurance that Shackleton and a crew of five would pilot on the very same route.