The archipelago of nine Atlantic islands making up Cape Verde, 500km off the coast of Africa, has been named the African Caribbean. Still relatively new to tourism, Cape Verde is the region’s most westernised nation and growing in popularity, with its incredible beaches and lively surf. It’s also a genuine cultural melting pot. First discovered by the Portuguese, there are influences from Africa and Brazil as well as Europe, and these can be seen in the national fashion, music and cuisine.
The most popular island is Sal, a cosmopolitan place which stands out for its lunar landscape and colourful, cobbled street towns, such as Santa Maria in the south. The beach here offers 8km of glorious coastline.
Meanwhile, on Boa Vista (‘Beautiful View’), there are 55km of golden sand as gorgeous as anything you’ll find anywhere in the Caribbean. Praia Chave, in particular, is wonderful, with its constantly shifting dunes.
But each of the nine islands offers something different, with a range of activities from which you can take your pick. Go hiking on craggy Santo-Antão, or visit cultural capital Mindelo on São Vicente, where there are bars and clubs aplenty. Wherever you go, you’ll enjoy the throb of music for which Cape Verde is known, and enjoy the famous morabeza (the Creole word for hospitality) of its people.