History – Island of Margarita
Sounds like a tale of sorts, however pearls & pirates truly are part of the history of the island of Margarita. I am by no means an historian, but I did some brief research on the history of Margarita Island. If you have arrived at this page looking for Margarita Island history in great detail, then I must apologise and you may have to find more facts elsewhere. For those interested in a brief overview of Margarita Island history, I have outlined the island´s most important moments below :
1498 – First European to set foot on the island was Christopher Colombus
1525 – The Spaniards had officially claimed it as their own colony, called Margarita Province
1561 – Lope de Aguirre (Basque Spanish conquistador & tyrant) took control of the island for a very brief period
1675 – The island was seized by Scottish pirate ‘Red Legs’ Greaves where he robbed huge amounts of pearls & gold
1676 – Again the island was attacked, this time from French pirate, Marquis de Maintenon
1814 – Margarita Island finally gained its independence from the Spanish
The island of Margarita is one of a group of three Venezuelan islands (the other two called Coche & Cubagua) which form one of the Venezuelan states known as Nueva Esparta. The island is roughly 78 km (48 mi) long and about 20 km (12 mi) at its widest point and covers an area of 1,020 square kilometers (390 square miles).
Margarita Island´s highest point, San Juan or Cerro Grande (located in the east), has an elevation of 920 meters (3,018 feet). The other notable mountain range, located in the western part of the island and called Pico de Macanao, is 760 meters (2,493 feet) above sea level.
The majority of the 450,000 residents live in the eastern part of the island, where the 4 major cities can be found. La Asunción is the state capital with a population of around 30,000 residents and is located within 10 km (6 mi) of the eastern coastline. South of La Asunción, the coastal cities of Porlamar and Pamapatar have populations of 100,000 and 50,000 respectively. The majority of the islands hotels, apartments, bars & restaurants can be found in both Porlamar and Pampatar. The other city of interest, Juan Griego, can be found on the north eastern coastline and has a population of about 30,000 residents.
Feel free to take advantage of the interactive google map below. Use the zoom function and move the map around to get a good feel for the island of Margarita.