Praia Antonio Sousa,
Santa Maria 4111,
The Republic of Cape Verde, or Cabo Verde in it's official language of Portuguese, is a horseshoe shaped archipelago of 10 volcanic islands which lie 570km west of Cap Vert, the westernmost point of Africa.
Positioned in the central Atlantic ocean the islands lay undisturbed by humans until the 15th century when they were colonized by the Portuguese and used as a base for the slave trade. The islands won independence in 1975 but Cape Verde's culture remains a mix of Portuguese Creole-African influences.
With a fertile landscape and climate that is milder than its African neighbours the Cape Verde islands have become a popular tourist destination in recent years. For visitors from Europe the flight is only one hour more than to the Canary Islands but a Cape Verde holiday will be an escape to a true tropical paradise.
Things to do in Cape Verde
With the Cape Verde Islands being quite remote they create a real sense of being able to distance yourself from the stresses and strains of everyday life while on holiday. With beautiful beaches and resorts that offer the full package on site it is certainly possible to simply lay back, relax and unwind but for the more active holiday maker there are many exciting activities to try. For those who want to stay dry, trekking in Cape Verde is a year round delight, particularly on the islands of Fogo and Santiago. Trek across the Chadas Caldeiras, an other worldly landscape to the still active volcano Pico do Fogo. For a slightly less energetic day out the colourful local markets have Cape Verdean crafts on offer, including baskets and woven cloth.
At night the sound of local music or Morna can be heard in most resorts but if you want to venture out to find the best nightlife in Cape Verde head to Santa Maria on the island of Sal or Mindelo on São Vicente.
For lovers of the sea there are endless options on these islands. Head to Boa Vista between March and April and join a whale watching trip to catch a glimpse of the incredible Humpback Whales that travel there each year to breed. Humpback whales are certainly one of the easiest Cetacean species to spot and perhaps the most entertaining as they love breaching and slapping their enormous fins on the water's surface.
Cape Verde Islands offer other wildlife spotting opportunities in the form of Loggerhead Turtles. These giant turtles lay their eggs at night along the beaches of Sal island between June and October.
The beaches in Cape Verde are perhaps its best known asset and for good reason. Sand is fine and golden and the waters are turquoise and many of the beaches remain unspoilt by large-scale development. Praia de Chaves on Boa Vista is the perfect beach to escape and relax on while Kite Beach on Sal is popular with kite surfing enthusiasts.
Diving in Cape Verde
Perhaps the most exciting activity on offer in Cape Verde is it's diving. Considered by many to be one of the last great untouched underwater environments the islands of Cape Verde are perfectly situated as a sanctuary in the Atlantic and within the merging of several oceanic currents to attract vast numbers of pelagic marine species. At varying times of year you may dive with Manta Rays, Lemon, Tiger, Hammerhead, Bull, Nurse and Mako sharks, schools of grouper, tuna, barracuda and countless more as well as 3 different turtle species. You never know you may even be lucky enough to dive with Pilot whales or even Humpbacks.
If you're looking for more variety in your Cape Verde diving adventure there are plenty of opportunities for wreck diving and the volcanic landscape offers vast caves and deep walls to tempt divers of all tastes .
If this all sounds fascinating but you've not yet taken your first breaths underwater now you can try diving with the PETER Diving System in Cape Verde with Eco Dive School on the island of Sal, what better place to start your underwater journey?