On January 6, 1832 the English brig Beagle lined the mouth of the port of Santa Cruz de Tenerife as part of a long voyage of exploration that would revolutionize our conception of the world over time. Charles Darwin traveled on that ship, fascinated by the wonderful descriptions that the polymath Alexander von Humboldt had made of the Canarian archipelago. The geographical location of the Canary Islands, its rugged volcanic relief, its contrast of natural landscapes, its lush laurel forests, its deserts of sand and lava, its profuse microclimatic variety and its insular condition have favored evolutionary processes that gave rise to amazing species of exclusive animals and plants. That is why they aroused great interest among travelers, naturalists and scientists of all times, attracted by the uniqueness of this living laboratory of Macaronesia.

Photographs © Francisco Márquez