International Women’s Day is the perfect time for reflecting on some of the pioneering women who shaped the history of travel.
In 2022 women can fly planes, and travel the world. Activ4 School Tours is passionate about providing students with inspirational educational experiences no matter a pupil’s gender, and without exceptional women this would not be possible.
To celebrate international women’s day here are 4 extraordinary female explorers:
From childhood Earhart had a spirit for adventure, leading her to a decade within the aviation industry, she even became the first pilot to cross the Atlantic and Pacific oceans. Earhart was a prominent figure in promoting commercial air travel; she was an early supporter for the Equal Rights Amendment and a member of the National Women’s Party. Earhart’s death was just as extraordinary as her life, disappearing whilst attempting to become the first woman to circumnavigate the globe, she has never been found. 80 years since her last flight, Amelia Earhart’s memory lives on. Earhart is honoured in the National Aviation Hall of Fame and The National Women’s Hall of Fame.
At a time when American flight schools did not admit women or black people, Bessie would not let this stop her. She took a French language course, travelled to Paris and on the 15th June 1921 earned her pilot’s licence from the , becoming the first black person to earn an international pilots licence. Coleman became a stunt flier renowned for her daring tricks, performing across the country. In doing so she also combated racism, Bessie would refuse to participate in events that prohibited African Americans. Coleman is an inspiration to all in her immutable purist of her dreams.
The first woman to be elected Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society, Bird was an explorer, writer, naturalist and photographer. A life of travel took Isabella across the globe. At 60 years old, after studying medicine, she travelled to India as a missionary, setting up two hospitals. Also as a passionate activist, after returning from the Middle East, Bird spoke to a parliament committee about the Armenian genocide. Bird’s life full of adventure and exploration is memorialized in her many books and articles.
In the 1770s Jeanne became the first woman to circumnavigate the globe via maritime transport. Jeanne disguised herself as a man in order to complete this mean feat; her true identity was only discovered after 3 years of sailing. Throughout her voyage Baret collected exotic plants, but did not document the experiences herself, which is why her role in history is not always fully recognised. The expert botanist was courageous in her exploration of the world and did not accept the societal norm for how women should live in the 1700s.
These are just four influential women we wanted to recognise today. International women’s day is the perfect chance to pay homage not just too powerful women from history, but also the powerful women around you.