“The Island,” a time-lapse video by internationally known photographer and AWB supporter Christoph Malin, was featured August 15 on the National Geographic website. The video shows, in time-lapse motion, the stunning vistas of La Palma in the Spanish Canary Islands, some 62 miles off the African coast.

Watch the Teaser: "The Island" - La Palma Time Lapse Video by Christoph Malin

The island hosts a Spanish national park—Caldera de Taburiente—and a UNESCO biosphere reserve, which leave huge tracts of land free of human development. La Palma’s volcanic origins led to incredibly high peaks for such a small area: The observatories on Roque de los Muchachos sit at 7,860 feet (2,396 meters) above sea level.

More than a dozen telescopes—including the largest single-aperture optical telescope on Earth—are perched on a high point on the rim of the world’s largest volcanic crater. Combine La Palma’s high, dry mountain peaks with low light pollution and reasonable access, and you get one of the best spots on the planet for optical astronomy.

Malin, who is based in Austria, took some 13,000 pictures to create “The Island,” on a whirlwind visit to La Palma in the first week of August 2011 (he says he got less than 10 hours of sleep during the entire week!). He points out that “La Palma has not only beautiful day landscapes to offer, it is one of the top six places on Earth to view the night skies.”

This is Malin’s second project featuring time-lapse photography of the night sky. The first one, “Black Hole Sun,” dealing with light pollution and the value of dark skies, was reviewed on National Geographic in May of this year.

Watch the Teaser: "The Island" - La Palma Time Lapse (video)
Making-of the TimeLapse Movie "The Island" (photos)
National Geography feature on "The Island" Time Lapse