The Polar Regions have a fascinating history. This section covers the discovery of both the Arctic and Antarctica, the explorers, and other aspects related to the history of the Polar Regions.


  • Antarctic Exploration
    Antarctica has a fascinating history. This section covers the discovery of Antarctica and beyound with a chapter by chapter account as well as special sections on explorers, and other themes.
    • Belgium and Antarctica
      Belgium may be a small country in the centre of Europe, but it played an important role in the exploration and discovery of Antarctica. Belgium was one of the early signatories to the Antarctic Treaty and after a long absence, now has an summer station in Dronning Maud land. To this day several Belgian's are active explorers in the Polar Region's.
    • Terra Australis Incognita
      The name Antarctica was found by the ancient Greeks. They were convinced that the earth was round and, in that way, consisted of a northern and a southern hemisphere. According to the philosopher, Aristotle (384-322 BC), nature was symmetrical. If there was a cold zone in the North of the world, then there must be a cold area on the other side as well. The North Pole is located under the constellation of the great bear ('arktos' in Greek). Antarctica means: opposite the bear.
    • Closer and closer
      In 1642 Abel Tasman left port to search for the legendary southern continent under the order of the governor-general of the Dutch East India Company in Batavia, Anthonie van Diemen. Tasman sailed around Australia without seeing the continent, but nevertheless discovered Tasmania and the west coast of New Zealand, which, of course, he thought was part of the Antarctic continent.
  • Antarctic Exploration Stages
  • Antarctic Explorers
    This section contains information about the Antarctic Explorers, their lives, achievements etc.
    • Fabian von Bellingshausen
      Fabian von Bellingshausen served his country for over 30 years and was promoted to Admiral.
    • Jean-Baptiste Bouvet Lozier
      Jean-Baptiste Bouvet Lozier (1705 - 1786)
    • Jean-Baptiste Charcot
      Jean-Baptiste Charcot was a French physician with a passion for sailing – he was also called "the gentleman of the Pole" by Sir Robert Scott.
    • Richard Byrd
      Richard Byrd (1888 - 1957)
    • Roald Amundsen
      Roald Amundsen (16 July 1892 - 18 June 1928) lead the first expedition to reach the South Pole, beating Sir Robert Scott by a month. Roald Amundsen was also on the crew of the Belgica, the first people to overwinter in Antarctica.
    • William Bruce
      William Bruce (1867 - 1921)