In his three extraordinary voyages, Captain James Cook made history. He was the first to discover Australia and the Hawaiian Islands and the first to circumnavigate New Zealand. By the 1700s, England, eager to expand its realm of trade, promoted exploration of all the unclaimed regions of the world. The eighteenth century, the age of reason and enlightenment, required a new kind of explorer: not a rover or a plunderer or a seeker of adventure for its own sake, but a master of navigation and seamanship. Captain James Cook filled the bill. No one ever surpassed Cook's record. From South America to Australia, from the ice islands of the South Pacific to the fogbound Bering Strait, lay thousands of miles of islands, atolls, and ocean that Cook charted.