The legendary astronaut Neil Armstrong who landed on the moon 40 years ago, is set to visit the Falkland Islands this coming cruise season. The pioneer who took that first “small step for man” will be aboard the National Geographic Explorer for a 21-day cruise to South Georgia, the Falkland Islands and Antarctica in November.
In an announcement timed to coincide with the 40th anniversary of the first moon landing, Lindblad Expediotns said passengers who sign up for the trip will have the unusual opportunity of spending time with Armstrong -- surely one of the most famous explorers of all time -- as they are following in the footsteps of heroic Antarctic explorers and reflecting on the future of exploration.
The big question, we suppose: What will Armstrong say after taking his first small steps on Antarctica?
The adventure begins on November 15 of this year, when travellers depart for Chile, aboard the National Geographic Explorer chartered out of Ushuaia. The ship will head south across the Drake Passage towards the Antarctic Peninsula, where travellers will have the opportunity to explore Deception Island, Paradise Bay, and Port Lockroy. From there, it's on to Elephant Island, South Georgia, and the Falklands, before returning to Ushuaia and returning home.
Over the course of the three-and-a-half week voyage, passengers aboard the Explorer will have an opportunity to watch whales swimming in the Southern Ocean, walk amongst King Penguins, and kayak along the Antarctic Peninsula, exploring waters that few ever have the opportunity to visit. And joining them at every step of the journey will be Mr. Armstrong, making an already unique travel experience, even more amazing.
Neil Alden Armstrong was born on August 5, 1930 in Wapakoneta, Ohio. He holds a degree in aeronautical engineering from Purdue University and a Masters degree in aerospace engineering from the University of Southern California. From 1949 to 1952, Armstrong was a naval aviator. Upon leaving military service, he became a test pilot. While serving as a test pilot, he was chosen to be a member of the astronaut corps. Though he was on the backup crew of many previous flights, his first space flight occurred in 1966 aboard Gemini 8. During this flight, he and fellow astronaut David Scott successfully performed the fists docking in space between two vehicles.
In July of 1969, Neil Armstrong was the commander of Apollo 11, America's first attempt to land a manned vehicle on the Moon. On July 20, 1969 Commander Armstrong and fellow astronaut Edwin Aldrin successfully touched down on the lunar surface. As Armstrong became the first person to touch the Moon's surface, he spoke the unforgettable phrase, That's one small step for man; one giant leap for mankind.
He and Aldrin explored the Moon's surface for 2.5 hours. Armstrong was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom in recognition of his accomplishments and his contributions to the space program
Neil Armstrong left NASA in 1971 to join the faculty of the University of Cincinnati. He remained there as a professor of aerospace engineering until 1979. Armstrong served on the National Commission on space from 1985 to 1986. In 1986, he was appointed as vice chairman of the presidential commission that investigated the Challenger explosion. Neil Armstrong is married and has two children. He currently lives quietly in Ohio.