Early European explorers in the Pacific islands

Timeline created by OzProjects
In History
  • Sep 26th, 1519

    Ferdinand Magellan

    Ferdinand Magellan
    Portuguese explorer Ferdinand Magellan (1480–1521) was the first known European to sail into the Pacific Ocean. He sailed
    through the Straits of Magellan at the tip of South America and across to the Philippines, making contact with the people of
    Guam and the Marianas Islands.
  • Aug 21st, 1526

    Alonso de Salazar

    Spanish explorer Alonso de Salazar was the first European to see the Marshall Islands.
  • Nov 15th, 1577

    Francis Drake

    Francis Drake set sail
  • Abel Tasman

    Abel Tasman
    Abel Tasman set sail
  • Samuel Wallis

    British Captain Samuel Wallis landed in Tahiti.
  • Period:
    Jan 1st, 1500
    to

    Early European explorers in the Pacific islands

    The Pacific islands were among the last places on earth to be charted by European explorers. The explorers were captivated by the beauty of the islands and the generosity of the people. By the beginning of the 20th century, every island in the Pacific had been brought under the 'protection' or colonial rule of Britain, France, Spain, Germany and America. Most islands had gained their independence by 1980. This timeline shows the arrival of some of the early European explorers in the Pacific.
  • Period:
    Nov 15th, 1577
    to
    Jul 22nd, 1580

    Francis Drake

    Francis Drake<br>
    English explorer Francis Drake (1540–1596) sailed across the Pacific Ocean from 1577–1580, but he did not have any
    contact with Pacific islanders.
  • Period: to

    Abel Tasman

    Dutch explorer Abel Tasman (1603–1659) visited the islands of Tasmania, New Zealand, Fiji and Tonga.
  • Period: to

    Louis-Antoine de Bougainville

    French explorer Louis-Antoine de Bougainville (1729–1811) circumnavigated the world between these years. On his way
    across the Pacific Ocean, he passed Tahiti, Samoa, Vanuatu and the Solomon Islands. The Pacific journey ended at the Bismarck Archipelago. The island of Bougainville, off Papua New Guinea, is named after him.
  • Period: to

    James Cook

    British explorer and cartographer James Cook (1728–1779) made three Pacific voyages mapping Tahiti, New Zealand and the east coast of Australia from 1768–1771. On his 1772–1775 voyage he landed at Easter Island (Rapa Nui), New Caledonia and Vanuatu. Cook mapped Hawaii on his third voyage.