It is also notable for its possible connection with the attempted colony of Vinland, established by Leif Erikson around the same period or, more broadly, with the West Norse colonization of the Americas.
Early explorations and conquests were made by the Spanish and the Portuguese immediately following their own final reconquest of Iberia in 1492.
Pedro Álvares Cabral reached Brazil and claimed it for Portugal.
Amerigo Vespucci, working for Portugal in voyages from 1497 to 1513, established that Columbus had reached a new set of continents.
The Age of Exploration was the beginning of territorial expansion for several European countries.
Portugal colonized Brazil, tried colonizing the eastern coasts of present-day Canada and settled for extended periods northwest (on the east bank) of the River Plate.As more nations gained an interest in the colonization of the Americas, competition for territory became increasingly fierce.Colonists often faced the threat of attacks from neighboring colonies, as well as from indigenous tribes and pirates.The post-1492 era is known as the period of the Columbian Exchange, a dramatically widespread exchange of animals, plants, culture, human populations (including slaves), ideas and communicable disease between the American and Afro-Eurasian hemispheres following Columbus's voyages to the Americas.A Norse colony in Greenland was established in the late 10th century, and lasted until the mid 15th century, with court and parliament assemblies (þing) taking place at Brattahlíð and a bishop located at Garðar.The first phase of well-financed European activity in the Americas began with the Atlantic Ocean crossings of Christopher Columbus (1492–1504), sponsored by Spain, whose original attempt was to find a new route to India and China, known as "the Indies".He was followed by other explorers such as John Cabot, who was sponsored by England and reached Newfoundland.England and France attempted to plant colonies in the Americas in the 16th century, but these failed.England and France succeeded in establishing permanent colonies in the following century, along with the Dutch Republic.Over this same timeframe, Portugal claimed lands in North America (Canada) and colonized much of eastern South America, naming it Santa Cruz and Brazil.Other European nations soon disputed the terms of the Treaty of Tordesillas.