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Cape Verde Holidays

Beautiful unspoilt beaches, stunning landscapes teeming with exotic wildlife, and year-round sunshine has earned Cape Verde a reputation as Africa’s answer to the Caribbean. The sparkling blue sea and soft white beaches sweep up into volcanic mountains, with green valleys and rustic villages tucked in between to explore. This exotic chain of 10 islands is set in the Atlantic off the west coast of Africa, so you can practically guarantee sunshine all year round.

24-30 °C

The sun is almost permanently shining, with average temperatures comfortably around 24-30 (°C) all year.

View live forecast

6 hours

Amílcar Cabral International Airport is the main international airport in Cape Verde. The airport is around 17km from Santa Maria.

Recommended offers in Cape Verde

smartline Crioula

7 Nights, All Inclusive
Hotel highlights
  • Beachfront location
  • Choice of hotel rooms and bungalows
  • Pool bar with snack service

TripAdvisor Traveller rating

Based on 2103 reviews

Thomas Cook Customer Rating
Based on 10 reviews

What is included ?

  • 15kgs Standard Luggage Allowance
  • ATOL Protection
  • 24hr Connected Service
  • Return Transfers

Oasis Salinas Sea

7 Nights, All Inclusive
Hotel highlights
  • Situated on Santa Maria beach
  • Interconnecting family rooms available
  • 24hr All Inclusive

TripAdvisor Traveller rating

Based on 2747 reviews

Thomas Cook Customer Rating
Based on 15 reviews

What is included ?

  • 15kgs Standard Luggage Allowance
  • ATOL Protection
  • 24hr Connected Service
  • Return Transfers

Oasis Belorizonte

7 Nights, All Inclusive
Hotel highlights
  • Situated on Santa Maria beach
  • Three outdoor pools
  • Recently refurbished bungalows

TripAdvisor Traveller rating

Based on 1973 reviews

Thomas Cook Customer Rating
Based on 6 reviews

What is included ?

  • 15kgs Standard Luggage Allowance
  • ATOL Protection
  • 24hr Connected Service
  • Return Transfers

Dunas de Sal

7 Nights, Bed & Breakfast
Hotel highlights
  • Just 150m from Santa Maria beach
  • On-site diving school
  • Poolside restaurant

TripAdvisor Traveller rating

Based on 367 reviews

Thomas Cook Customer Rating
Based on 2 reviews

What is included ?

  • 15kgs Standard Luggage Allowance
  • ATOL Protection
  • 24hr Connected Service
  • Return Transfers

Hotel Pontao

7 Nights, Bed & Breakfast
Hotel highlights
  • Inviting swimming pool
  • 400m to the beach
  • Comfy superior rooms

TripAdvisor Traveller rating

Based on 235 reviews

What is included ?

  • 15kgs Standard Luggage Allowance
  • ATOL Protection
  • 24hr Connected Service
  • Return Transfers

Sink your toes in to the soft white sand and relax at the beach, check out the water sports like snorkeling and kitesurfing, or take a tropical trek through mango tree forests high up into the mountains. Every way you look you’ll be treated to stunning views. And if you come at the right time you might also spot a rare loggerhead turtle or humpback whale from the beach! When it’s time for a spot of shopping, head into the towns or fishing villages dotted over the islands, like relaxed Santa Maria on the island of Sal. Catch up on some retail therapy at a local market, or sample delicious local delicacies at a choice of good restaurants. Visit during February and join the carnival fun as music fills the air and dancers perform through the streets.

If you’re looking for picture postcard beaches you’ll find them at every turn during your holiday to Cape Verde. Stroll along the seemingly endless powder-soft, white sand at Santa Maria, which stretches over four and a half miles. Colourful fishing boats bob on the turquoise sea, making this the ideal spot to relax and soak up the sunshine and views. Or take a short boat ride to Boa Vista. This unspoilt island paradise promises secluded bays where you can get away from it all, though you may have to share it with a turtle or migrating whale.

The result of millions of years of volcanic activity, there are no shortage of stunning natural attractions on the islands. One of the most popular with photographers is the bay of Buracona, which is less than an hour’s drive from Santa Maria. This rocky cove is home to ‘Blue Eye’, a gap in the rock where the sun shines through to light up the ocean floor, creating a dazzling effect. The stunning beaches are not only a magnet for sunseekers, the local wildlife loves them too. Every year, thousands of female loggerhead turtles return to these beaches to lay their eggs. Book your Cape Verde holiday between June-October to witness this amazing natural event during a guided turtle-watching tour. Or if you visit in March/April, you might also spot a splendid humpback whale, passing through on migration.  

The traditional food of the islands is as colourful and vibrant as Cape Verde itself. You’ll find restaurants serving local delicacies like cachupa, a traditional slow-cooked dish of beans and meat or fish with a distinctly Portuguese heritage. Enjoy the fruits of the sea with freshly-grilled lobster, washed down with the local tipple, a sugar-cane rum. The Portuguese influence also fuses with African culture each year in February for the popular Mindelo Carnival. One of many festivities held throughout the year, it’s a time to let your hair down and party. Like Rio Carnival, it’s a heady mix of colourful costumes, complete with feathers and sequins, pounding samba music, and dancing.

Cape Verde is best for...

Couples: Unspoilt beaches and memorable sunsets make holidays to Cape Verde ideal for couples. Take a romantic walk along the Santa Maria’s shoreline and spot stars in the inky sky. Or enjoy a special picnic together on the pretty white beaches of Boa Vista.

Party-goers: Celebrate carnival time with a heady mix of local food, drink, music, and dance. 

Animal lovers: Spot humpback whales off the coastline during migration or enjoy the miracle of turtle nesting time.


Fast facts

Language: The language spoken is Portuguese.

Currency: The currency used is the Cape Verdean escudo.

Local time: Cape Verde is 1 hour behind GMT/UK time.

Fly to: Amílcar Cabral International Airport is the main international airport in Cape Verde. The airport is around 17km from Santa Maria. 

Flight time from UK: 6 hours

Tourist Information: Further tourist information can be found here.

Visa & Health: Before you travel, click here for recommendations and advice on visas and health.


Weather & climate

All year round you’ll enjoy temperatures ranging from 24-30 (°C) with the sun seemingly permanently in the sky. It does rain, but these are infrequent. Instead you can look forward to almost wall-to-wall sunshine. In the height of summer, temperatures can peak in the mid-thirties. If you’re a keen windsurfer, the winds build in the winter months to offer excellent conditions for hitting the water. Or to enjoy the warm sea and long sunny days, book for the spring or autumn.


Getting around

By mini-bus: Great value shared mini-buses known as ‘aluguers’ can be flagged down on the street. They’ll drop you off at any point and are a practical way to get about.

By taxi: It’s easy to spot the bright blue taxis of the island, which have a distinctive yellow stripe. There’s usually plenty to choose from, but the cost of fares can vary depending on the time of day. 

By plane: Hop between islands effortlessly, thanks to regular flights.


Events

Carnival: Sao Vincente’s Mindelo Carnival is one of Cape Verde’s biggest annual events, held each February. Watch as the locals dress up in stunning costumes and dance along the cobbled street to the samba beat, or why not join in yourself? 

Live music: Every August, the Festival de Musica da Baia das Gatas entertains beach goers. A vibrant mix of Jazz, Latin, reggae and traditional local musicians hit the stage, with dancing on the beach continuing into the small hours.


Why choose Thomas Cook

With hotels available to suit every person and every budget look no further than Thomas Cook for your getaway this year!

  • Thousands of hotels to choose from
  • Dedicated online customer service
  • Over 175 years of travel experience
  • Award winning travel company
  • Thousands of destinations worldwide

Holidays In Cape Verde 
All Inclusive

Weather In Cape Verde
Jan, Feb, March, April, May, June, July, Aug, Sept, Oct, Nov, Dec

Recommended Hotels
Oasis Selinas Sea, Hotel Morabeza, Smartline Crioula, Oasis Belorizonte, Dunas De Sal 

Similar Destinations
Barbados, Corfu, Majorca, Tenerife, St Lucia Santa Maria

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