7 OF THE BEST BEACHES IN CAPE VERDE
Cape Verde holidays are a sunshine paradise nestled on the west coast of Africa, with ten idyllic islands each boasting gorgeous beaches amid lush surroundings - so you'll be spoilt for choice. The best part, we've selected 7 of the best beaches in Cape Verde so you can add a drop of tropical heaven to your day. Which one will you head to first?
Want to know more about this spectacular island beyond the beaches? Take a look at our pocket guide to Cape Verde for more sun, sights and sands...
1. CORVO, SAO VICENTE
Corvo is a beautiful settlement cushioned between the rocky coasts and serene beaches of Sao Vicente. It's an ideal spot if you're looking for a quiet getaway, with swathes of soft golden sands at Praia da Areia and Porto da Casa alongside an abundance of diving opportunities for marine lovers. For family holidays and those travelling with kids can try Hotel Oásis Atlântico Porto Grande, featuring sparkling pools and a classy restaurant with an international menu. The hotel is a haven for music lovers with live music played in the outdoor lounge, or try hotel's upbeat Syrius disco club. You can find live music at many of the restaurants too, such as Archote, Nella's, Pica Pau and Tradisson e Morabeza.
2. PRAIA DE CHAVES, BOA VISTA
If you fancy golden sand dunes and secluded beaches, Praia de Chaves (just west of Boa Vista) is a perfect spot with a sun-kissed coastline that stretches for 10-kilometres - so picking your sunbathing spot won't be a problem. The Boa Vista Wind Club provides equipment and lessons for kayaking, kitesurfing and windsurfing, so even beginners can make a splash and stand up on some waves. Learn scuba diving and snokelling at the Submarine Centre, on Estoril Beach, to explore the magnificent marine world. Music lovers and party goers can make their way yo to the nearby Praia de Santa Cruz, which hosts a lively music festival in August every year.
We've highlighted the best times to visit Cape Verde, so you can make the most of the coast when the weather's warmest!
3. SANTA MONICA, BOA VISTA
The stunning 22km Santa Monica beach is the perfect place to lay your towel down for an afternoon of ultimate R&R. Feel the warm golden sands between your toes amidst the gentle sound of waves, with the crystal-clear blue waters make it an ideal spot for swimmers and watersports enthusiasts - with fantastic activities including windsurfing to try. The Viana Desert is also a must-visit for anyone staying in Boa Vista, where you can catch a half day tour and hop off to explore the Santa Maria Shipwreck!
4. SANTA MARIA, SAL
The bustling fishing town of Santa Maria serves up a beautiful blend of serene beaches and lively evenings, making it a hot destination for year-round sunshine holidays. The Santa Maria beach is a perfect spot to wind down and admire the gorgeous natural settings around you. Soak up some sun on the endless stretch of this golden sand beach, and later head interior for buzzing bars and cafes. The island has its own minor music festival too, so party-lovers can head to Santa Maria in mid-September for lively beats by the beach!
5. CALHAU, SAO VICENTE
One of Cape Verde’s more extinct volcanic islands, Sao offers the most stunning coastline with black sands and contrasting crystal clear waters. The beach of Calhau is perfect for surfing and other watersport activities, or if you're a non-surfer, you can sit back and admire the beautiful settings of nature. Evenings in Sao Vicente come to life when DJs mix Cape Verdean music with African and Caribbean rhythms at Cave, Caravela and Alta Lua. The legendary Baía das Gatas music festival has taken its name from the bay too, or if you're seeking tranquility, the dramatic dunes on the north side of the baía are well worth exploring.
6. TARRAFAL, SANTIAGO
Tarrafal is nestled in a rustic island of Santiago along the southern stretch of Cape Verde and offers a beautiful mix of calm beaches, rocky landscape and lush green countryside. Be sure to have your camera at the ready, as you'll be blown away by incredible sunset scenes from the other side of Pico de Fogo. Seafood lovers cannot miss the huge plates of seafood at Baia Verde, which is right on the sunny coast. But that's not it, summers in Cape Verde bring you the best of all music festivities like the Gamboa Music Festival, which is held (and not to be missed) each May in Praia.
7. PONTA DO SOL, SANTA ANTAO
If you're an adventurer after fantastic hiking opportunities, with stunning seaside views to match, then Santa Antao is the island to visit during your Cape Verde holidays. Ponta de Sol provides the most amazing hiking spots and spectacular views of sun, sand, and sea that are certainly worth the walk. Although hiking is the main draw here, Santo Antao is also best known for bird-watching, but a guide is advisable given the complexity of the trails.