Returning to England in the autumn of 1840, he entered Trinity College, Cambridge University, to study medicine, but then he switched over to mathematics. He was at Trinity College until early 1844, when, in his third year, overwork and concern for his ill father brought about a nervous breakdown. Due to this, he opted out of an Honors degree and instead took a poll degree.
For a while he took up medicine again, but dropped the subject entirely after his father died and left him with a considerable fortune. He never took up a conventional occupation, but devoted his life to travel and scientific research.
He traveled up the Nile, visited Jerusalem and Syria and organized a trip to South-Western Africa to chart the then-unexplored territory of present-day Namibia. On his return, he married Louisa Butler on 1 August 1853, and published some notable travel books like 'Tropical South Africa' (1953) and 'The Art of Travel' (1855). His later travels were limited to the European continent.
Galton also carried out meteorological research, devising weather mapping and stressing the importance of the anticyclone. He published a book 'Meteorographica' in 1863 and played a role in the establishment of the Meteorological Office and the National Physical Laboratory.
Galton received many awards and honors in his lifetime, including membership of the Royal Society and a Knighthood. He died at the age of eighty-eight on 17 January 1911 in Grayshott House, Haslemere, Surrey, England.