In the 10th century B.C. the first settlers arrive (Phoenicians).
Berber groups from north Africa began to form the first settled communities.
The economy was based on agriculture and subsistence animal farming.
At the beginning of the 11th century the first explorers and European sailors began to arrive.
In 1496 the conquest of the islands reached its peak and the Canary Islands were completed integrated into the Crown of Castile, which led to the end of the aboriginal way of life.
Christopher Columbus landed in the Canaries on his journeys to America, bringing important products and ideas to the islands.
The islands were gradually colonized by Spanish, Portuguese, Genoese, Flemish, English and Irish commercial interests, which developed the production and trade in various export items that varied over the centuries (sugar cane, wine, cochineal, bananas, tomatoes and potatoes).
In the second half of the 19th century the modern period began, which created an economy dependent on other lands.
A prosperous economic activity developed around the Canarian ports, which were an obligatory stopping-point for European ships on route to Africa, Asia and America; this development implied a growth in the number of workers employed in the ports.
The islands witnessed an intense process of urbanization, and a parallel depopulation of rural areas, which became more acute from 1960 onwards with the development of tourism.