Located on Africa’s west coast 500km west of Senegal in the Atlantic Ocean, each of the islands of Cape Verde have their own distinct character. However, all of Cape Verde enjoys year long warm weather with little rainfall, one of West Africa’s highest living standards, a unique mix of African and Portuguese cultures, and a rapidly growing tourism industry.
Cape Verde’s capital city, Praia, lies atop a plateau on the country’s most significant island, São Tiago. Although Praia is one of the world’s smallest and most relaxed capital cities, its nightlife is very lively and it’s a mere 10kms away from some of São Tiago’s most beautiful beaches. Even more spectacular beaches await visitors to São Tiago’s second city of Tarrafal, with a lush, green valley just a short distance away in São Domingos.
However, Cape Verde’s true beach paradise is the island of Sal, home to the country’s largest international airport in the tranquil town of Espargos and a thriving network of nightclubs, bars, and beachfront resorts in Santa Maria. Mindelo, located on the island of São Vicente, is said to be Cape Verde’s most vibrant and picturesque city, filled with Portuguese colonial homes. Green Santo Antão and mountainous Brava are particularly popular hiking destinations.
Cape Verde has a wide variety of accommodation to suit all needs and budgets, ranging from four-star all inclusive beachfront resorts to fully furnished rental apartments to quiet rural hideaways where visitors can completely escape from the rest of the world. Advance booking is highly recommended during the high season of April to September.
Visas are required for all foreign visitors to Cape Verde, and must be purchased in advance by those living in countries with Cape Verde embassies. Other visitors may purchase visas upon arrival to Cape Verde. The islands of São Tiago, Sal, and Boa Vista all include international airports handling flights from throughout Europe, North America, and Africa. Boat connections to mainland Africa are infrequent and expensive.