By Sophia Xiao
Here in San Jose, it’s easy to get lost in the humdrum of urban life and forget to go out once in a while to explore the wondrous, restorative power of nature. While not everyone has the time to go camping or hiking all the time, it’s easy to squeeze in a documentary while you’re cooking, knitting, drawing, cleaning or just relaxing.
Nature documentaries help remind us of how much bigger the world is than just humans and civilization, and how important it is that we preserve it. In fact, a new study from BBC Earth and the UC Berkeley called The Real Happiness Project shows that watching nature documentaries can actually make you happier, similar to how being in nature can rejuvenate you.
So, after a long day, put on one of the following BBC nature documentaries narrated by David Attenborough’s epic, soothing voice on Netflix to relax and unwind as you explore the vast and wonderful Earth without ever leaving the city:
- Planet Earth I & II
A breathtaking series that takes you around the world, through different habitats each episode. While the original is a must-see, the 2016 sequel makes use of newer technology to get even more majestic, beautiful cinematography.
- Blue Planet I & II
Blue Planet is an exploration into the mysterious world of the Earth’s marine environment. Prepare to be amazed by the strange creatures and awed by the unparalleled beauty of the underwater.
This collaboration between BBC and Discovery Channel reveals the bizarre behaviors living organisms have devised to keep their species alive, from a pod of dolphins that uses their tails to drive fish out of the water to a fried egg jellyfish that spears its prey with its harpoon-like tentacles.
- Frozen Planet
Witness the unprecedented footage created by the exhaustive efforts of filmmakers who spent more than 2,300 days in the field and 18 months at sea recording ecosystems and animals of the Arctic and Antarctic.
The Discovery Channel and BBC once again reunite to chronicle the vast and diverse continent of Africa, full of animals and habitats most people have never even heard of.
- Nature’s Great Events
Each episode of this documentary covers a different, awe-inspiring wildlife spectacle and the challenges and opportunities they present to animals.
These are just some of the many programs on Netflix to get you started. Hopefully, they motivate you to explore and protect our Planet Earth.