How many countries have landed on the moon?
Although the first human to go on a space flight was a Russian (Yuri Gagarin) and an umanned Russian craft (Luna) did succeed in reaching the moon in 1959, the only country that has actually succeeded in making a manned moon landing is still the US. There was a Soviet programme to do the same, but there were various difficulties with this (the Zond programme) and it was abandoned in 1970 after the successful American moon landing.
The Apollo 11 spacecraft achieved this on 16 July 1969, when astronauts Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin planted the American flag on the moon. After this there were further landings, until 1972 by which time altogether 12 men had actually walked on the moon's surface. A further 12 astronauts had travelled with them into the lunar orbit.
Since that time there have been further attempts at space exploration, and now there is renewed interest in reaching the moon again, especially as there is a theory that it could one day be a source of water.
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