The National Geographic series Welcome to Earth is available on Disney+ December 8.
Who hasn’t paused to appreciate a beautiful sunset? Or listen to the wind rustling through the trees? By the sea, there are mesmerizing tides and a salt-air scent; in the sky, dazzling formations of birds, and endless stars.
Behind all those experiences are the natural forces that power our planet. They give rise to the sounds, smells, and sights we perceive; the life that swarms around us, moving at every speed. Those phenomena are the focus of this special issue and of a six-part National Geographic television series, starring Will Smith and available on Disney+.
In print and broadcast media and on digital and social platforms, this project shares one title: Welcome to Earth. That’s an oddly appropriate greeting, addressing us as if we’re strangers to a place we think we know well. But we may find that we don’t know it well at all, as Welcome to Earth invites us to look at the planet in new ways.
In this issue, six pieces explore one phenomenon each, such as color, sound, speed, and smell. And the stories documenting life on the Serengeti combine amazing storytelling with the photography of Charlie Hamilton James.
“I’ve been going back and forth to the Serengeti for 25 years, and it’s never lost its wonder to me,” Hamilton James says. “There simply isn’t anywhere better on Earth to photograph wildlife.” Cumulatively, he’s spent more than two years there for National Geographic to capture the epic annual migration of about 1.3 million wildebeests—a swarm if ever there was one.
Also included in this issue, in print and online: a Serengeti poster with maps and illustrations by Nat Geo artists and cartographers.
Each month, we aim to transport you to places you’ve never been and to show you the world anew. I hope you think this issue more than fills the bill.
Thank you for reading National Geographic.
This story appears in the December 2021 issue of National Geographic magazine.