Early European Explorers

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Explorers Country Represented Year of Exploration Journey
Leif Ericson Vikings (Norway) about 1000 Newfoundland
Bartolomeu Dias Portugal 1487-1488 First European to round Cape of Good Hope at the southern tip of Africa
Christopher Columbus Spain 1492 San Salvador and West Indies
John Cabot England 1497 Greenland, Labrador, Newfoundland
Vasco da Gama Portugal 1497-1498 First to reach India from Europe by sea
Amerigo Vespucci Spain 1497-1502 South America and West Indies
Pedro Cabral Portugal 1500 Sailed around Africa to India; discovered Brazil
Vasco de Balboa Spain 1513 First to sight Pacific Ocean
Ferdinand Magellan Spain 1509-1522 Led first expedition to sail around the globe, but died mid way
Juan Ponce de Leon Spain 1513 Florida
Hernando Cortes Spain 1519-1521 Aztec kingdom of Mexico
Giovanni da Verrazano France 1524 Eastern coast of North America
Panfilo de Narvaez Spain 1528 Florida and Mexico
Francisco Pizarro Spain 1531 Inca empire of Peru
Jacques Cartier France 1535 St. Lawrence River
Esteban and Father Marcos Spain 1539 Canada and Quebec; Zuni pueblos of New Mexico
Hernando DeSoto Spain 1539-1542 Mississippi River, American Southeast
Francisco de Coronado Spain 1540-1542 American Southwest
Juan Rodriquez Cabrillo Spain 1542 California
Sir Francis Drake England 1577-1580 Around the world
Samuel de Champlain France 1603-1609 The Great Lakes and Quebec
Henry Hudson England 1609 Hudson River and Hudson Bay