The Spanish expedition in the ship “Pros”, which emulates the first circumnavigation of Elcano and Magellan, paid tribute to the discoverer of the Galapagos Islands in 1535, Fray Tomás de Berlanga, in a ceremony on San Cristóbal Island, where a commemorative plaque was placed in his honor.
The event counted with the participation of local authorities of the islands, the support of the Spanish Embassy in Ecuador, and the collaboration of the Junta de Castilla y León through the Siglo Foundation, in addition to being sponsored by the Berlanga de Duero (Soria) City Council, the birthplace of Fray Tomás.
“In homage to the Spanish sailor and explorer of America and the Pacific. Fray Tomás de Berlanga (Berlanga de Duero (Soria). 1487-1551), discoverer of the Enchanted Islands or Galapagos in 1535 “, indicates the votive plate.
At the ceremony, the historical context and personality of Tomas de Berlanga, and the crew delivered a flag of the community of Castilla León and a shield of the city of Berlanga del Duero to local authorities, said the consul general of Spain in Guayaquil, Jorge Friend, who was at the event.
The plaque has been placed in the Interpretation Center of San Cristóbal, one of the components of the project “Interpretation and Environmental Education Plan for the Galapagos Islands” and which was financed by the Government of Spain through the Spanish Agency for International Development Cooperation, in coordination with the Galapagos National Park Directorate and with the support of the Charles Darwin Foundation.
There the history of the islands, its geological formation process and its development over the last centuries.
The Galapagos They were discovered on March 10, 1535, when the then bishop of Panama traveled by sea to Peru to settle a dispute between Diego de Almagro and Francisco Pizarro over the limits of their respective governorates, and deviated from the route.
The Spanish expedition aboard the “Pros” arrived in Guayaquil (southwestern Ecuador) on October 14, where it remained for a few days in reviews before setting sail for the Galapagos archipelago, following a route that recreates the First Ring Road to the World.
Since Tuesday the boat has anchored in Puerto Baquerizo Moreno, in the San Cristobal island, capital of the province of Galapagos.
The Galapagos archipelago is located about thousand kilometers from the Ecuadorian continental coasts and were declared in 1978 Natural Heritage of Humanity by Unesco.
After his planned short stay in the Ecuadorian islands, the “Pros” will resume his journey this week to cross the Pacific and sail to Papeete in French Polynesia, from where it will subsequently head to the Philippines, Indonesia, South Africa and the Cape of Good Hope before return to Seville.
The one that begins in Galapagos will be the longest stage of this journey, an expedition of the association Friends of the Great Navigators and Spanish Explorers (Agnyee) called “In the wake of JS Elcano”, and that emulates the feat that began in 1519 Fernando Magellan and culminated in 1522 Juan Sebastián Elcano.
Although the journey suffered a year and a half interruption forced by the covid-19 pandemic, the expedition was resumed on September 23, when he set sail from the Peruvian port of Callao towards the Ecuadorian coast.
The objective is arrive in Seville in September 2022, its point of origin, on the occasion of the fifth centenary of that journey considered a milestone of navigation but also of globalization.