Fuerteventura History

Fuerteventura history

The island is product of the volcanic activity in this Atlantic area. It is considered the oldest island of the group, formed about 20 million years ago. The last volcanic activity suffered by the island took place five million years ago.

The first habitants are presumed to arrive to the island from North Africa. In recent archaeological investigations, it has been found pottery and primitive tools in the caves and semi-subterranean dwellings where they settled first.

Phoenicians arrived to the island in 11th century BC. The Insulae Fortunatae were mentioned in Homero’s “Odyssey “around 850 BC.

The Fuerteventura island suffered diverse Spanish and Portuguese expeditions, but it was in year 1405 when the french conqueror Jean de Bethencourt took the island and named the capital after his name: Betancuria, placed in the west coast.

The island stood pacific and without alteration under military governors after Spain got it back. The main activity took place in1850 decade when Queen Isabel II gave the city the free trade zone act and changed the capital of the island to the actual one, Puerto del Rosario, formerly known as Puerto de Cabras.

During the 20th century it obtained the right to self-govern and became part of the province of Gran Canaria. In 1940 the first airport of the island was built and started its activity as touristic resort in the 60’s until nowadays.

Actually it belongs to the Canary Islands Community.