Cape Verde’s March to Victory

Long long ago, we were
A scattered set of towns,
Hustling for independence
And world renown.
Real were our struggles,
Battling drought and poverty,
‘Til the time came when we joined hands
And set out to write history.

Emerge we did,
From the Portuguese slave trade,
Nothing but our own determination,
Came to our aid.
Now when we look back today,
Our chest swells with pride,
And our eyes brim with tears of nostalgia,
As we march astride.

From country that usurped
With few resources at hand,
No roofs over our head
And no cultivating land,
To a WTO member,
A potpourri of a unique cultural blend,
Some of Europe
And some of the African trends.

For the sacrifices of these ancestors,
Were certainly not in vain,
Look where we are today,
And look at what we’ve gained.

So curious is the world now,
That immigration flow in,
To bask in our glory,
And celebrate a mutual win.
Global respect, admiration,
World acclamation, and fame,
Have etched forever in history,
The great Cape Verde’s name.

-CV Hustle

Cape Verde: The travel destination everyone is talking about

The holiday season is in full swing and people are busy making preparations to celebrate Christmas and New Year. Families have already given shape to their annual vacation and packing their clothes to have fun and enjoyment on a destination of their dreams. But if you are among those who still have your vacation decision this year, there is a destination that is exotic and interesting that you may have seen or heard about: the Cape Verde Islands, a small nation located in Atlantic Ocean. Located some 570 km away from Cape Verde Peninsula in West Africa, this archipelago of 10 islands has suddenly caught the imagination of the travelers around the world.

cape verde travel

Travelers showing tremendous interest in this small island country

Capo Verde has a small population of slightly over half a million. It is spread over an area of more than 4000 sq. km. It boasts of an arid climate and has a mountainous terrain. This island country has a booming tourism industry which largely supports its economy. Interest shown by travelers in Capo Verde has been amazing. Based upon searches conducted on Google, this small island country is searched more than some of the top vacation destinations of the world. Interest in this country by travelers since 2004 has grown by almost 3000%. This reflects a growing trend among the travelers towards adventure tourism, a kind of tourism for which Capo Verde has tremendous opportunities. According to an article published in Lonely Plant recently, other countries where travelers have shown high interest for tourism are UAE, Philippines, Pakistan, Nigeria, Yemen, Qatar, Bangladesh, Kuwait, and Oman. But all these countries are far behind Cape Verde when it comes to online searches.

For all those who resent freezing temperatures that are common in December and January, Cape Verde presents itself as a virtual paradise with temperatures remaining steady at 25 degrees Celsius (77 degrees Fahrenheit). With year-round warm and sunny weather conditions and quick access through a 6-hour flight from most major airports, Cape Verde has emerged as a favorite destination for families from America and Europe.

Amazing diversity in terms of geography in a single vacation

There are 10 islands in total making up Cape Verde, with 9 of these islands are habitable. What makes Cape Verde exciting for travelers is the fact that every island has a different geography and presents new and exciting opportunities for them. If you are looking for islands with crystal clear water and white sand on the beaches, Sal and Boavista are the ones waiting for you. Sal also has a beautiful salt lake called Pedra de Luma. Boa Vista is the island where you can enjoy not just the beaches and some beautiful turtles but also get to see the famous Vana Desert. If your preference is islands with mountains every which way you turn, Santiago and Santo Antao are perfect places for you to indulge in some hiking and exploration.

cape verde travel

There is even Fogo Island with an active volcano if you are a dare devil and wish to see a volcano from close quarters. If you are fond of canopying, scuba diving, and hiking, Santo Antao is the best island for you. It also has an active volcano. Aguas Belas is the island most difficult to reach. You can get access by going there on boat. Despite difficult access, travelers make it a point to visit Aguas Belas because it is a treat the eyes to see. One of the biggest highlights of this island is a grotto having a huge hole. This hole actually leads to the sea having clear water. Campers are delighted when they reach Serra Malagueta which is the highest point in Santiago. Despite having different topography, what make all 9 islands similar for a tourist are their coastal areas that are full of beautiful rocky structures.

Lots of fun and recreation waiting for you

You will always find summer in Cape Verde. This means you can travel light as you do not need to pack your heavy items of clothing. All you need is your sun cream to protect your skin from the UV rays of the sun. Spend endless hours soaking the sun on the white sandy beaches of this island nation if you are bored with the cold weather conditions back home. For those who are yearning for some action in the outdoors, Cape Verde is nothing short of a paradise.

cape verde travel

You may have a hard time trying to spot Cape Verde on the map of Africa, but you will be amazed with the kind of attractions awaiting you. Every island has a different set of places and activities to indulge in.

Cape Verde is not just a beautiful tropical paradise because of its natural scenery. It also boasts a strong nightlife with pubs and restaurants where you can enjoy good music and drinks. Do whatever you want to do during day time and then relax with some music and drinks in these joints in the evening. 

Plan a trip to Cape Verde this Christmas and New Year. You will cherish the memories of this beautiful island nation forever.

The story of Jeronimo is a fictional piece that takes one back to life in Cape Verde in the mid-1950’s. The story is a depiction of the common struggles associated with life and journey to distant lands in search of a better life. A story that is so common amongst many Cape Verdean’s who have immigrated and have hustled their way to success despite their humble beginnings.

Continue reading →

Visiting the Island of Fogo, Cape Verde

Fogo, which means fire, is the southernmost island of Cape Verde, settled in between the islands of Santiago and Brava. The island of Fogo is basically a conical and active volcano which rises above the sea to a towering peak of almost 10,000 feet. Fogo is home to the highest peak of the archipelago, called Pico do Fogo (Peak of Fogo). This high peak along with its other mountainous characteristics makes Fogo the most geographically dominant Island in all of Cape Verde. On clear days, neighboring islands of Santiago and Brava along with other relatively remote islands such Sao Nicolau can witness a silhouette of Fogo and on some occasions, Fogo’s peak can be seen to be levitating in the skies. Its volcanic properties have had many effects on the local life. The islands favorite wine is produced from vines grown inside the volcanic craters of the mountains. Despite the soil being rich and highly fertile to support life, the local people frequently move due to the nature of the volcanic mountains, as well as lack of overall resources and opportunities.

Fogo was first discovered by Portuguese explorers in 1456, but it took an additional four years for them to fully discover the island in its entirety. Upon its discovery, the island was named after Saint Philip (Sao Filipe). However after observing volcanic activity on the island, it was renamed to Fogo sometime around the major eruption of 1680. The largest eruption is estimated to have occurred approximately 70,000 years ago and was likely the cause of a 500 foot mega-tsunami that resulted in massive truck-sized boulder deposits on the island of Santiago. After renaming the island to Fogo, Sao Filipe came to be known as its capital. Sao Filipe is the island’s main municipality where approximately 20,000 of Fogo’s 40,000 population live. In addition to Sao Filipe, Fogo consists of two additional municipalities which are named Mosteiros and Santa Catarina do Fogo. The three municipalities are divided into 31 civil parishes (freguesia) altogether which are further subdivided into smaller towns and villages, each serving a distinct and unique experience to tourists and visitors.

Click here to learn more about the history and culture of Cape Verde

A visit to Fogo will most likely convince you with no doubt that it is the most visually mesmerizing of all Cape Verde islands as it serves as a resort for any hiker who can brave the journey to get closer to nature. Despite its incredible scenic atmosphere, it remains pristine largely to the fact that relatively few tourists end up visiting the island compared to the other islands. Currently, the most popular way to get to Fogo is by airplane.

Once you are on the island, private and shared taxi (aluguers) are available to take you around the islands. Shared aluguers are preferred and provide a more economical way of getting around the island. Guides are also available to show you the best routes and to help you plan activities that are unique to the island.

Trekking and Hiking

Although Fogo can accommodate many activities, it is well known for providing an attractive landscape for hikers. Fogo actually offers various types of terrain that can appeal to all levels of hikers. The most popular hiking destination is located in Fogo’s Natural Park in Cha Das Caldeiras. Curious adventurers can decide to explore mind-captivating lava tubes or wander around the lunar-like landscape and imagine walking on the craters of the moon. Regardless of hiking experience, however, it is recommended that all hikers seek guidance from local tour guides if they wish to hike up towards the volcano’s crater or the summit of Pico de Fogo. Those willing to commit to this hike should be prepared for a physically demanding journey as the steep climb can take up to four hours and if not planned accordingly with the timing of the sunrise will have to deal with the intense heat from the sun. Contrary to the time it takes to climb however, it usually takes less than 30 minutes to descend.

Vineyards in Cha Das Calderas and wine tasting

In addition to the volcanic moonscape that Cha Das Caldeiras offers its tourists, it is also home to a 140-year tradition of winemaking, where grapes are locally harvested from the fertile grounds of the volcanic craters for production of various types of chemically-free wine, such as the traditional Manecon. Although the recent eruption of November 2014 destroyed the village of Cha Das Caldeiras entirely, some vineyards remained intact and the winemaking tradition, although threatened and halted by the eruption, still remains today and the proud inhabitants who were forced to evacuate their homes are determined to rebuild their life and village in Cha Das Caldeiras. So while you are in Fogo, you won’t want to miss visiting the vineyards and sampling its homemade wine.

Swimming

Do not let the vastly rugged terrain of Fogo fool you – Fogo is home to some exotic beaches that have their characteristics determined by its volcanic properties. The sandy beaches of Fogo are uniquely the color black due to volcanic eruptions. The non-sandy beaches such as the Salina beach or Ponta Da Salina, which is equivalent to a large but natural swimming pool that is surrounded by cliffs, can also provide an immersing swimming experience that will be one for the books.

We hope you enjoyed learning more about things to do and sites to see in Fogo, Cape Verde. We welcome you to share your thoughts and experiences with us and be a featured guest on our blog!