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Explore Cape Verde: Vacation in the Fortunate Isles

The Cape Verde islands rise dramatically in the Atlantic Ocean off the coast of Senegal in Africa. This volcanic archipelago is a haven to the intrepid traveler. Amazingly beautiful, vacations in Cape Verde offer a rich mix of steep mountains and hilly passes, beautiful beaches, charming little coastal villages all tied with a rich history blending Portuguese and African cultures.

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When to travel to Cape Verde

The beautiful islands of Cape Verde are termed the Caribbean of Africa for their tropical weather and lovely beaches. While the sun shines all year round, August to October sees a lot of rainfall and can be avoided. autumn and spring are relatively drier, making these the best seasons for vacation Cape Verde.

How to reach Cape Verde

Cape Verde is well connected via flights. Regular flights connect major countries in Europe and West Africa. There are a few flights to Brazil and USA as well. It has international airports on the following islands:

  • Sal
  • Santiago
  • Boa Vista
  • São Vicente

What to explore in Cape Verde

Hiking in San Antao

Cape Verde comprises ten major islands with a lot to see in each. Your vacation in Cape Verde should begin with a hike in the steep hills of Santo Antao, the second largest island in the group. When you arrive by ferry, the island will look pale and dusty, but take a bus to the steeper north, and the verdant greenery of the hills are sure to stun you. With pine forests, steep canyons, gorges, dizzy waterfalls and smouldering volcanos, your hikes in this island will be among the most memorable on your travels.

Cultural extravaganza at Sao Vicente and Mindelo

Mindelo in the Sao Vicente island is the cultural capital of the country and is considered to be one of the prettiest towns on the Atlantic. You can go for a beautiful day hike to Monte Verde, the highest point in the island, offering panoramic 360 degree views. Alternately, head to the windy golden beaches of Salamanca, Sao Pedro, Calhau and Baia das Gatas for your fill of parasailing, windsurfing, and kitesurfing.

Climb a volcano in Fogo

A vacation in Cape Verde is incomplete without a volcanic hike in Fogo. The Pico do Fogo volcano rises steeply to 9,500ft. and is an active volcano. A hike at dawn to catch the sunrise here is almost surreal. Also unmissable is the Cha das Caldeiras; the area inside a large crater that led to the volcanic formation of the island 100,000 years ago. The volcanic soil has led to the cultivation of grapes used to prepare the famous Fogo wine — another must try on this island.

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Good to know

Cape Verde is a small and peaceful nation. Crime is low, but you will need to respect the local culture. It is advisable to travel with local guides here.