Cabo Verde
Visit Cabo Verde

About Cabo Verde

Cabo Verde: geography, history and culture

The islands, because they wanted to be ships, were shipwrecked between sea and sky".

The sentence is by Cape Verdean writer Aguinaldo Fonseca and illustrates, with poetic lightness, the robustness of the people and the land, marked by centuries of colonialism, slavery, scarcity of resources and a demanding geographical position.

None of this silenced the morabeza, a gentle, attentive and welcoming way to receive those who arrive, to take care and to lead life.

This Cape Verdean way is told in the greatness of its history, in the contrasts of the islands and in the richness of its mixed roots.

Geography and Geology

dunas em cabo verde

Millions of years ago, a dozen volcanic islands emerged by the side of Africa.

The terrain varies between the east islands, which are older, flat and sandy, and the west islands, which are newer and mountainous, rocky and irregular.

To prevent the accentuated loss of soil due to water and wind erosion, a plan for the reforestation of the islands has been underway since independence.

With an arid and semi-arid climate, moderate temperatures all year round, although few water courses, the islands live with frequent droughts, water scarcity and occasional torrential rains.

The Fogo Volcano and the natural parks are mandatory visits to better understand these islands.


estátua em cabo verde

The Cabo Verde archipelago was uninhabited and was discovered in 1460 by Portuguese explorers, at the service of King D. Afonso V.

Two years later, the settlement began.

For centuries, the islands stood out, due to their geographical position, as an important commercial center, supply and slave traffic for the routes that connected the European continent to Africa, Brazil and North America.

Portuguese dominance remained until the 20th century, when geographical and administrative distance became painful for Cabo Verdeans.

On the island of Santiago, the first capital of the archipelago, Cidade Velha, is an important point to learn more about Cabo Verde history.

People and culture

mulher cabo verdiana

Cabo Verdeans have mixed ancestry of Africans, Portuguese, Italians, French, Spanish and Jews.

The five centuries of Portuguese colonialism deeply marked the islands, but African traditions and Creole identity are very present.

The country's culture is a unique blend of its European and African roots, something that is particularly noticeable in Cabo Verde's artistic production, whether literary or musical.

And the music is permanent.

Joy runs through the streets, nourishes the days of those who live here and fills the hearts of those who visit the archipelago and never forget the beat of mornas, funaná and batuque, mazurca and coladeras.


Explore Cabo Verde

Sun and beach, mountain trails, landscapes of a nature that so easily springs up everywhere and a wealth of customs and traditions that does not translate into any price: Cabo Verde is a paradise that rests by the sea.

With the morabeza of the people and the magic that is only found in Islands of sun and sea, this archipelago is a universe of experiences to discover.

Flavors, smells and colors permeate memories and here you can feel the warm breeze on the skin and the sweetness of life.

Travel Wise

Getting to know a new country is synonymous with new adventures. Each country is a country. It is a different culture, with its own laws, customs, tastes and peculiarities distinct from any other part of the world.

Preparing your trip in advance can save you some challenges.

Here you can find the most frequent questions of travelers and some tips so that you can get to know the country smoothly.



Sign up for our newsletter and discover travel experiences you’ll really want to try.