Cape Verde

Cape Verde is a tiny West African archipelago in the Atlantic Ocean that is beginning to attract a lot of interest. An all-new international airport opened on the island of Santiago and hotels are being bult like mad. So what’s all the fuss? Well, the country is divided into two groups of islands: Northern Windward “Barlavento” (Boa Vista, Santo Antao, S. Vicente, Sao Nicolau and Santa Luiza) and Southern Leeward “Sotavento” (Brava, Fogo, Maio and Santiago). It is a remarkably diverse place, being, as is was, a crossroads for traders for several centuries. It attracted so many different cultural groups that the resulting mix of culture there can be quite baffling.

The official language is Portuguese, but Creole is spoken too. So is English. The food is so diverse there is said the be a specific Cape Verde cuisine. Sites to see include the volcanic Mt. Fogo, UNESCO Heritage town of Cidade Velha and the picturesque Mindelo. If you want to learn more, then listen to journalist Martin Corben’s dispatch from 2004. Also, be sure to check out the Wikipedia entry on the country because the photos are just fabulous.