20 Gorgeous Photos to Celebrate 15 Years of the Nat Geo Channel

TV Insider Staff
NatGeo - Elephant Foetus, 19 months. (model)

Pioneer Productions

In the Womb: Animals

In 2006, viewers were taken inside the hidden world of animal pregnancy in a way that was never possible before. State-of-the art visual effects, computer graphics and real-time, moving 4D ultrasound imagery shed light on how an elephant, a dolphin and a dog all develop in the womb.

Patrick Mosrris/BBC

Galápagos

Originally airing in 2007, this Peabody Award-winning natural history special was the first in-depth, full-access film made about the islands in over 20 years.

NatGeo - Chasing Ice

James Balog/Extreme Ice Survey

Chasing Ice

Timed to coincide with Earth Day 2013, this documentary was made with 26 time-lapsed cameras placed in Iceland, Greenland, Alaska and Montana. Filmmaker James Balog captured visual, undeniable evidence of glacier climate change in this Sundance Film Festival winner for best cinematography.

Jim Surette (c) NGT&F

Surviving Everest

One of Nat Geo's earliest specials, which aired in 2003, documented the 50th Anniversary of the first Everest expedition. The sons of three celebrated climbers led the way up the tallest mountain on Earth, revealing the dangers and drama as well as the untold stories of those who live in its shadow.

NatGeo - UNTAMED AMERICAS

NGT

Untamed Americas

Academy Award-Nominated actor Josh Brolin narrated the four-hour high-definition miniseries, which revealed the grit and glory of the North America, Central America and South America wilds.

NatGeo - Cesar Millan: The Real Story

Adina Pliskin

Dog Whisperer

Cesar Millan, a pop culture phenomenon well-known for taming dogs, celebrated 100 episodes in 2008.

Brent Stirton/Edit by Getty Images

Explorer

Back in 2008, Nat Geo's longest-running television program reported from Virunga National Park, located in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, where six rare mountain gorillas had been senselessly shot a year before. The shocking photographs by Brent Stirton captured the attention of the world.

Anup Shah

Great Migrations

Filmed over two and a half years across 420,000 miles in 20 countries and on all seven continents, this epic seven-part miniseries finally debuted in 2010.

Emory Kristof

Return to Titantic

Dr. Robert Ballard, the legendary explorer who first discovered the R.M.S. Titanic, and Nat Geo went on an underwater expedition in 2004 to give viewers a spectacularly closer view of the infamous ship’s final resting place.

Mark Thiessen/ National Geograph

Deep Sea Challenger

In 2012, James Cameron, National Geographic Explorer-in-Residence and director of the Hollywood film Titanic, went 35,756 feet underwater to the ocean’s deepest point, the “Challenger Deep." Secured in a specially designed submersible, Cameron descended into the Mariana Trench for the landmark expedition.

National Geographic Channels

Life Below Zero

In 2013, viewers were taken inside the daily challenges of people who live in one of America's harshest climates in Alaska. The reality series became a hit and continued to be one of Nat Geo's highest-rated shows.

National Geographic Channels

Saints and Strangers

A two-night movie event debuted in 2015 to explore the origin story of Thanksgiving. The scripted series revealed the trials and tribulations of the first Plymouth settlers and their complex relationship with the Native Americans.

Plus: 14 Saints and Strangers Scenes That Tell a Gritty Thanksgiving Tale

NatGeo - Combat Rescue

NGT

Inside Combat Rescue

For the first time in history, the United States Air Force allowed cameras to follow pararescuemen on the front lines in Afghanistan. The Air Force allowed Nat Geo crew to be embedded with the elite unit during a four-month deployment in Kandahar to document their heroism, for a series that aired in 2013.

Patrick Eccelsine/FOX

Neil Degrasse Tyson from Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey


In 2014, Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey became the most-watched series ever for National Geographic Channel International, reaching over 135 million viewers. The following year the mini-series would win Critic’s Choice Awards for Best Reality Series and Neil deGrasse Tyson for Best Reality Host.

National Geographic Channels

Brain Games

Originally a three-hour special in 2011, rave reviews and high viewership numbers transformed it into a hit series that still airs today.

National Geographic Channels

Killing Kennedy

Starring Rob Lowe as President John F. Kennedy, 3.4 million people tuned into this critically-acclaimed original drama in 2013, and the hashtag #killingkennedy trended worldwide.

Reuters/Corbis

Inside 9/11

To mark the anniversary of 9/11, Nat Geo broadcast this four-hour miniseries, which focused meticulous attention on detail and firsthand storytelling. The special provided a comprehensive and compelling perspective of the tragedy, providing a timeline that tracked the earliest roots of al Qaeda, the 1993 World Trade Center bombing and the September 11 attacks.

National Geographic Channel

On Board Air Force One

As the nation prepared for the historic inauguration of President Barack Obama on January 20, 2009, the NatGeo secured access to Obama’s first flight, plus President George W. Bush’s last official flight.

NASA

Live From Space

In 2015, NASA took Nat Geo into orbit like never before. This two-hour special broadcast live from Mission Control in Houston and joined astronauts aboard the International Space Station as they circled the globe.

Florent Herry

Waking the Baby Mammoth

Premiering in 2009, this segment followed a global forensic investigation as they delved into the life and death of the best-preserved baby mammoth ever discovered.

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Special thanks to the National Geographic Channel for providing photos and captions.