Burton traveled throughout the Middle East dressed as an Arab in his role as an Orientalist, Ethnographer, Explorer, and Writer.
He traveled with John Speke into the wilds of Africa in search of the source of the Nile River. He was also sent by the Royal Geographical Society to explore East Africa and discovered Lake Tanganyika (well, the indigenous folks already knew it was there).
He spoke 29 European, Asian, and African languages.
He asked for leave from the army to explore the Middle East and became very familiar with Muslim society by traveling as an Arab. Talk about dedication, he had himself circumcised to make his disguise complete.
I don’t have room enough here to give you a complete history of Burton’s travels and accomplishments. He lived his own life, causing no end of grief to the establishment.
For the science fiction fans, you might recall him as a character in Philip Jose Farmer’s Riverworld series.