Overheard at National Geographic


Come dive into one of the curiously delightful conversations overheard at National Geographic’s headquarters, as we follow explorers, photographers, and scientists to the edges of our big, weird, beautiful world. Hosted by Peter Gwin and Amy Briggs.


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Come dive into one of the curiously delightful conversations overheard at National Geographic’s headquarters, as we follow explorers, photographers, and scientists to the edges of our big, weird, beautiful world. Hosted by Peter Gwin and Amy Briggs.




Introducing: The Soul of Music

National Geographic turns 135 in 2023. In February 2023, to celebrate exploration and commemorate Black History Month, National Geographic’s flagship podcast, Overheard, will feature musicians and National Geographic Explorers in conversation on music and exploration. This is just one of many celebrations planned for this milestone anniversary. Hosted by Overheard producer Khari Douglas, these four episodes (every Tuesday in February) will feature world-famous musicians Rhiannon Giddens,...


Unfolding the Future of Origami

The future is bright for origami, the centuries-old art of paper folding. In recent decades, scientists, engineers, and designers have pushed origami beyond its traditional roots and applied its patterns to fascinating technologies like foldable kayaks and tiny robots that can fit into a pill capsule. We’ll fold cranes with National Geographic writer Maya Wei-Haas, who will share the latest advancements with origami and what the future holds for this art form in science. For more information...


What Happens After You Uncover Buried History?

The 1619 Project was a New York Times Magazine endeavor that explored the ways the legacy of slavery still shapes American society. The story exploded into cultural consciousness in 2019, and has since become a book, a podcast, and now, a documentary series. For the project’s creators, that meant great success, but it also meant facing pushback and surprises. We talk to journalist Nikole Hannah-Jones about how politics affected The 1619 Project and what it means to be in the middle of this...


The People and Tech That Power Nat Geo

Cameras that drop miles beneath the ocean surface. Handmade art that reveals the secrets of archeological sites and extinct animals. For 135 years, National Geographic has pioneered new ways of exploring and illuminating our world—and now you can meet a few of the people who make it possible. Join Nathan Lump, National Geographic’s editor in chief, and Jill Tiefenthaler, CEO of the National Geographic Society, for a tour of the cutting-edge Exploration Technology Lab and a look inside the...


Meet an Imagineer Who Built a Wish

Last summer, Disney Cruise Line released its fifth and most technologically advanced cruise ship yet: Disney Wish. We’ll meet Laura Cabo, a creative executive at Walt Disney Imagineering, who shares the excitement and challenges in designing a cruise ship that’s nearly as long as the Eiffel Tower, and how Imagineers turn visions into reality. For more information on this episode, visit natgeo.com/overheard. Want more? The documentary Chad made with Laura and other Disney Imagineers is called...


How Sharks Devoured My Career

When Nat Geo Explorer Gibbs Kuguru was in college, he found himself trying to choose between two terrifying futures: going free diving with sharks off the coast of South Africa or, even scarier, studying for the MCAT. Since then, he’s become devoted to sharks. His genetic research has shown they can do remarkable things, like change color to become more effective predators. And he’s also become a staunch advocate for shark species as they grow more vulnerable to overfishing and the effects...


The Nurse Keeping Explorers Alive

For 17 years, nurse Karen Barry’s office at National Geographic headquarters has served as an important stop for journalists, photographers, and explorers in need of vaccines and medical advice before they set out on expeditions all over the globe. We’ll head down to the medical office to listen to her stories of helping explorers out in the field—and we’ll hear from one of her most frequent “customers,” Dangerous Encounters host Brady Barr, who over the years has dealt with multiple animal...


What Science Tells Us About Living Longer

Scientists are hard at work trying to understand what causes aging and how to help people stay healthy for longer. Biologist Matt Kaeberlein breaks down the science of longevity and tells us how he’s using a robot to test 100,000 aging interventions a year on microscopic worms and a long-term study on the aging of pet dogs. Then we’ll leave the lab to visit Willie Mae Avery, the oldest person in Washington, D.C., to hear what it’s like to live such a long life. For more information on this...


Presenting: ESPN's "Pink Card"

Today we bring you a high-stakes story from ESPN’s 30 for 30 Podcasts—a tale of women’s rights, history, and soccer. As Iranian women took to the streets in fall 2022 to fight gender inequality, they also targeted sports. Iranian women have been banned from attending games in stadiums for more than four decades. In ESPN’s series Pink Card, creator, host, and executive producer Shima Oliaee follows Iranian women who dare to defy the ban, from protesting at the gates to sneaking into soccer...


The People Behind the Photography

National Geographic photographers seldom do their work alone, especially those who journey out to far-flung places. This week, we’re shining a light on local collaborators—people whose names don’t show up in the credit line for a photo but who are key to helping our photographers get the breathtaking shots you see with our stories. We’ll hear about their extraordinary adventures—which include fighting off an alligator to save a camera—and how they’ve helped photographers navigate and...


There’s a Bear in My Backyard

Sure, we love bears when they show up in books or cartoons. But what if one is outside our window? Human-bear encounters are becoming far more frequent as development continues to spread and people and bears seek similar resources of food, water, and shelter. National Geographic Explorer and large-carnivore ecologist Rae Wynn-Grant dispels a few myths about bear behavior, describes what it’s like to cuddle a bear cub, and offers tips on what to do if you find a bear in your backyard—or bump...


Playback: The Real-Life MacGyver in Nat Geo's Basement

In the basement of National Geographic’s headquarters, there’s a lab holding a secret tech weapon: Tom O’Brien. As Nat Geo’s photo engineer, O’Brien adapts new technologies to capture sights and sounds previously never seen or heard before. In this episode, originally published in June 2021, O’Brien leads us on a tour of his lab as he designs and builds an underwater camera and shows us some of his favorite gadgets—including a camera lens that flew over Machu Picchu in a blimp, a remote...


Pictures of the Year

Every year, National Geographic rolls the year into a collection of photos for its “Pictures of the Year” issue. It’s a mysterious process, and we’re about to share it with you. We’ll see what baby carriages are like in Greenland, witness the moment SpaceX burst into a cypress swamp, and make a new four-legged friend as deputy director of photography Sadie Quarrier shares with us the choice photos for this year. For more information on this episode, visit natgeo.com/overheard. Want more?...


Who Inspired Wakanda's Warrior Women?

The fictional, fearsome, and all-female Dora Milaje in the movie Black Panther: Wakanda Forever were inspired by a real group of African warriors: the Agojie. Nat Geo contributing writer Rachel Jones shares the history of the Agojie and discusses the way that movies and pop culture can shape our understanding of the world. For more information on this episode, visit natgeo.com/overheard. Want more? Learn more and check out photos of the Agojie in Rachel Jones’s article. Also, in 2019 Rachel...


Wayfinding Through the Human Genome

National Geographic Explorer Keolu Fox grew up hearing stories about his ancestors, Polynesian navigators, and the men who in the late 1970s led the first Hōkūleʻa voyage to Tahiti. As the first Native Hawaiian with a Ph.D. in genomic sciences, Fox tells us how genetic data can help reveal powerful narratives about the history of Indigenous people and their achievements, and empower communities to use data to improve public health and preserve their culture. For more information on this...


Presenting: Greeking Out by National Geographic Kids

National Geographic Kids' Greeking Out is a kid-friendly retelling of some of the best stories from Greek mythology. This episode, "Akhenaten The Heretic King," is all about King Tut's father and how he attempted to reset Egyptian religion and politics. You can listen to more episodes of Greeking Out on Apple, Spotify, or wherever you get your podcasts. We'll be back next week with a regular episode of Overheard. Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices


The Hole Where King Tut’s Heart Used to Be

One hundred years since the discovery of King Tutankhamun’s tomb, archaeologists are still puzzling over the mysteries of his mummy. Why was he covered in “black goo” and buried without a heart? And how did his tomb remain hidden for so long? To answer these questions, we head to the National Geographic Museum’s King Tut exhibit with Archaeologist in Residence Fred Hiebert to hear his take on what happened to Egypt’s boy king and hear from mummy expert Salima Ikram about how recent...


Exploring Pristine Seas

National Geographic Explorer in Residence Enric Sala quit academia to explore and protect the sea. On his journey to keep the ocean pristine, he has swam with jellyfish in Palau, gone diving in the Arctic, and got acquainted with sharks at Millennium Atoll. Sala’s explorations have led to 24 marine preserves—with a combined area more than twice the size of India. But the hard work is far from over, as Sala aims to protect 30 percent of the world’s oceans by 2030. Want more? Learn more about...


What the Ice Gets, the Ice Keeps

In 1915 Ernest Shackleton’s ship, Endurance, sank off the coast of Antarctica, stranding the crew on drifting sea ice. Shackleton’s desperate rescue mission saved all 28 men. But for more than a century afterward, the location of Endurance eluded archaeologists—until this year. National Geographic photographer Esther Horvath was there, and recounts the moment when the ship was located 10,000 feet beneath the polar ice. For more information on this episode, visit natgeo.com/overheard. Want...


What You Do Counts

Some of the most crucial countries in the global fight against climate change are in Latin America, and yet there are few resources on the crisis for Spanish speakers. Eyal Weintraub, a 22-year-old National Geographic Young Explorer and climate activist from Buenos Aires, Argentina, is working to change that. Guest host Jordan Salama joins Weintraub to talk about his popular podcast, Lo Que Haces Cuenta, which unpacks the climate crisis in bite-sized episodes—and explores the everyday ways...