Those observers sent on expeditions were travelling to sites selected primarily for their geographical position.
But factors such as climate and the current relations with indigenous peoples and other European nations were also factors in the process of selection. War between Britain and France disrupted the plans of some observers in 1761.
Beyond their astronomical mission, the larger expeditions provided opportunities for more extensive exploration. The botanist Joseph Banks launched his career as a natural historian on Captain Cooks voyage, returning as a celebrity with new species and dramatic tales of discovery.