Today we are in Cape Verde, an exceptional African country known for its beautiful islands and abundant beaches.
Cape Verde also known as the Republic of Cabo Verde, is an African Island stretching over an archipelago of 10 volcanic island nations on a volcanic islands off the northwest coast of the continent.
Known for its Creole Portuguese-African culture and morna music, this strikingly beautiful country is part of the Macaronesia ecoregion, situated in the Atlantic Ocean, about 570 kilometres off the West African coast, close to Senegal, Gambia, and Mauritania.
The country’s largest island, Santiago is home to the its current capital city, Praia, and the old capital, Cidade Velha.
- Portuguese is the official language but people also speak Crioulo, an Africanised Creole Portuguese.
- The population is made up of a good mix of African and Portuguese heritage.
- The country’s president Jorge Carlos Fonseca is a Cape Verdean politician, lawyer, and university professor who has been President of Cape Verde since 2011.
- The country boasts as West Africa’s highest standard of living as a result of its stable political and economic system.
- Santiago is the largest Island, both in size and population and is home to the capital city, Praia.
- The islands are divided into two sections, the Barlavento islands which are windward and the Sotavento islands located on the leeward side . The Barlavento Islands include, Santo Antão, São Vicente, Santa Luzia, São Nicolau, Sal, and Boa Vista and the Sotavento Islands consist of Maio, Santiago, Fogo, and Brava.
- Cape Verde is named after Cap Vert, which means Green Cape in Senegal, the westernmost point of continental Africa.
- The flag of Cape Verde consists of two white horizontal stripes above and below a red horizontal stripe in the lower half of a blue field. A circle of ten gold stars representing the major islands is centred around the red stripe on the hoist side.
- President Jorge Carlos Fonseca is the 4th President of Cape Verde and he won the 2011 presidential elections in a second round of voting.
- when the archipelago became independent on July 5th 1975, that the independence of Cape Verde was shared with Guinea-Bissau, they were a joint country until 1980.
- Cabo Verde is the 3rd largest nesting site for Loggerhead turtles and it is illegal to capture turtles which are endangered species in the country, between June and February.
- There are more Cape Verdians living abroad than in the country.
- Brava is a little island called ‘the Garden Island’ of Cabo Verde, because there are many tropical plants and flowers. It has no beaches, just high cliffs, and you can visit it and hike the mountains.
- Only a tenth of the land is suitable for agriculture. The soil is good but the production of food is hampered by the lack of water and the legacy of the inefficient land tenure system.
- The tunnels were cut through the walls of the crater at Pedra de Lume in Cabo Verde to make it easier to transport the salt out of there.
- In 1919 to make things easier a tramway was built for the purpose of transporting salt to the port.
- Benito Mussolini the Italian dictator bought the rights to build an airport on Sal,Cabo Verde as he needed to refuel his aircraft on the flights between Europe and South America. Portugal bought the airport back off him in 1945..
- Temperatures rarely drop from the mid-twenties, with the winter months averaging 23°C and the summer months reaching around 27°C
- Although the salt mines have long gone at Sal, the saltpans remain and are great for bathing in. Due to their buoyancy, you can float on the surface
- There are no mosquito’s in Cape Verde
- Espargos, Sal’s capital city mean ‘asparagus’ in Portuguese. This refers to the wild vegetable asparagus stalks, that grow in sandy areas around the island
- The only golf course can be found on the island of Sao Vincente
- Did you know that there is one goat for every two people on the islands?