Columbus's Ships
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Pinta Ship Christopher Columbus, Three ships, voyages, Exploration

It is a known fact that Christopher Columbus had three ships when he had set out on his very first expedition in the year 1492. Pinta was one of the three ships. This ship was also known as Caravel. A caravel was a ship that had a shallower draft as compared to a nao. Pinta was a small vessel which had very little space for storing cargo.

This enabled the ship to be very small, fast and lighter to move in the waters as compared to the Santa Maria. Pinta, being a small vessel, had the capacity of carrying only a small number of crew members on board.

Pinta Ship Christopher Columbus

Pinta Ship Christopher Columbus


As there was no space inside the ship for so many men to sleep, they would often sleep on the deck. They would go below the deck if the weather conditions were unfavourable to sleep on the top.

This ship was under the command of Martin Alonso Pinzon who was a very experienced mariner from Moguer in Andalucia. Nothing much was ever known about the ships of Christopher Columbus and much information had been gathered from the general pattern of ships seen in that century and from the little information available about the voyages.

Pinta Ship Christopher Columbus

What was Pinta named after?

Traditionally, Spanish ships were named after saints and were also given nicknames. La Pinta was a nickname given to the ship and it was not its real name. However, the original name of Pinta is not known and therefore it is known by its nickname.

What happened to the Pinta ship?

Pinta was a small trade ship and could accommodate approximately 300 sailors. Pinta was commanded by Martin Alonso Pinzon on Columbus first journey. The ship probably got separated for a short period of time from the rest of the crew during their return. However, they were reunited later.

Columbus's Ships
Columbus’s Ships

Christopher Columbus Ships

It is a possibility that the Pinta weighted approximately 150-300 tons or even 70 tons. Since there is no clue as to what the ships looked liked it is believed that the Pinta had three masts and could carry sails like Santa Maria or other big ships. However, the only exception with this ship was in regards to the topsail and the sprit-sail.

More info on- Christopher Columbus Biography, Caribbean, Early Childhood, Columbus Articles, Nina Ship Christopher Columbus

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