As in the Canary Islands in general, the origin of the island’s first settlers is still quite obscure, although the hypotheses in this respect are many and varied. Nevertheless, with the discovery of Libyan-Berber inscriptions, the attention has turned to seeking the roots of the islands’ inhabitants in northeast Africa. In fact, from recent studies it is thought that groups of Berbers from this region came and settled in the island to become Fuerteventura’s first inhabitants - the “Majos” - of which some cultural traces still remain today, as well as a series of words, such as tofio, baifo, tesjuate and some other terms referring to animal husbandry.
At the beginning of the 15th century, the island was invaded and colonized by Juan de Bethencourt and Gadifer de la Salle, after which, the conquerors took over the existing kingdoms of Maxorata and Jandia, their kings, Guize and Ayose, adopting the names of Luis and Alfonso, respectively. They established themselves in what is today Betancuria Valley, where the Franciscans also founded the Monastery of San Buenaventura. The island remained a feudal territory from the 15th to the 19th century, when it became part of the Spanish province of the Canary Islands.
Due to its traditional productive system based mostly on agriculture and animal farming though with some use of marine resources, territorial occupation has historically been mostly in the interior whilst the coastline was, in general, ignored. However, despite this, the island’s natural harbors of Toston, Puerto de la Peña, Pozo Negro and Caleta de Fuste generated intense commercial activity.