Balboa was born in Jerez de los Caballeros, Spain. His mother was the Lady de Badajoz, and his father was the hidalgo(nobleman), Nuño Arias de Balboa.
In 1500, Balboa decided to embark on his first journey to the Americas after hearing Columbus's successful travels. He went with Juan de la Cosa on Rodrigo de Bastidas expedition.
Here we go!
In 1501, the crew crossed the Caribbean coasts from the east of Panama along the Columbian coast and through the Gulf of Uraba toward Cabo de la Vela. The trip continued to explore more territory until they didn't have enough men.
In 1505, Balboa settled in Hispaniola where he resided as a planter and pig farmer. Yet, the job didn't work out as he ended up in debt. When he wished to escape Santo Domingo, Balboa set sail as a stowaway.
I must get out of here!
What are you doing here? Whatever, we'll keep you.
Before an expedition arrived at San Sebastian de Uraba, Balboa was discovered aboard the ship, and he was threatened to be left on the next inhabited island.
However, Fernandez de Enciso decided that with Balboa's knowledge would be of great utility since he had explored the area eight years before, and soon his popularity grew in the ship. Together, the crew founded the first permanent settlement on American soil, called Santa Maria.