Cape Verde Guide

Cape Verde Guide

Cape Verde – information about the country

Country name Cape Verde
Official name Republic of Cape Verde
Capital Beach
Continent Africa
Area 4,033 km2
Population 491,875 (2010)
Foundation of a state 7/5/1975
The highest mountains Pico de Cano 2829 m (Fogo)
State system a pluralist republic with a unicameral parliament
The biggest cities Praia (capital) 73,000, Mindelo 55,000
Official language Portuguese
Ethnicity/National Composition mixed race 71%, black 28%, European 1%
Religious affiliation Roman Catholics 93.5%, others 6.5%
Currency 1 Cape Verde Escudo (CV Esc.) = 100 centavos
gross domestic product (GDP) US$4,368 (2012)
Average life expectancy of the population 70.73 years (2006)

Country overview

According to Abbreviationfinder, Cape Verde consists of two island groups (Leeward and Windward Islands) about 600 km off the coast of Senegal (Cape Verde).

Natural conditions of Cape Verde

All the islands are of volcanic origin with steep rocky coasts, formed by high mountains that have been worked into wild shapes by erosion and wind-driven sand. There is an active volcano on Fogo Island. The climate is consistently warm, but very dry, influenced by the trade winds.

There are no sources of fresh water on the islands. Mists from sea water provide moisture for agriculture.

People and history

Cape Verde was settled by the Portuguese after 1460. It became a center for the slave trade and, in the 19th century, an important base for transport across the Atlantic Ocean. The majority of the population are mulattoes, a mixture of African slaves and Portuguese, and speak the Creole dialect Crioulo. In 1551, Cape Verde became an overseas province of Portugal and in 1975 it gained independence under the leadership of President Aristide Pereira (born 1924). Attempts to connect with Guinea-Bissau failed. In 1990, the ruling party was defeated in the first multi-party elections.

Cape Verde economy

Agriculture suffers from a lack of water and produces mainly sugar cane, bananas and other fruits, vegetables, coconuts and sweet potatoes. The main export items are bananas, tuna and lobsters. The industry processes fish, produces cigarettes and alcohol. Salt is mined. Cement is made from volcanic material.

Cape Verde is an air (Sal International Airport), sea and cable hub. Health and social care are limited. Education is free, but there are few job opportunities. Many islanders migrate for work.

Cape Verde (Republic of the Cape Verde) is a state in the Atlantic Ocean (620 km from the west coast of Africa).

The climate is dry tropical, the temperature is + 25 * C all year round, there is little rainfall.

Tourism is the main source of income for the republic. The flow of tourists to the country is increasing every year.

Resorts and attractions of Cape Verde

Since there are a large number of rubble uplands in the territory of the Cape Verde Islands, this territory is sometimes called the land of lunar landscapes. Flying up to the islands, you will immediately notice the stunning contrast that the azure-blue sea creates, crashing against the sun-drenched rocks.

The archipelago, called Cape Verde, is located in the Atlantic Ocean, 600 km west of the coast of Africa (from Senegal). It consists of 15 islands with a mountainous terrain, some of the islands are difficult to access. Each island has its own unique nature. In general, the country has a mild tropical climate with continuous winds. The coastal area near many islands is huge beaches.

Interesting facts

Cape Verde Islands is an archipelago of 10 large and 8 small islands in the central part of the Atlantic Ocean. Opened in 1460.

The average life expectancy of the inhabitants of the island is 70 years.

Country data

Location: West Africa

Time zone: CET – 2 (during summer time: CET – 3)

Total area: 4,033 km²

Land area: 4,033 km²

Water area: 0 km²

Length of the state border: 0 km

Coastline: 965 km

Capital: Praia

Districts: 22
Boa Vista, Brava, Maio, Mosteiros, Paul, Porto Novo, Praia, Ribeira Brava, Ribeira Grande, Ribeira Grande de Santiago, Sal, Santa Catarina, Santa Catarina do Fogo, Santa Cruz, Sao Domingos, Sao Filipe, Sao Lourenco dos Orgaos, Sao Miguel, Sao Salvador do Mundo, Sao Vicente, Tarrafal, Tarrafal de Sao Nicolau

Telephone code: 00 238 (Source: Allcitycodes)

Highest point: Mount Fogo 2,829 m


Population: approx. 540,000 residents (Countryaah, 2021)

Population growth: 1.4% per year

Population density (residents per km²): 134

Life expectancy: 69 (male), 74 (female)

Official language: Portuguese


  • 77% Roman Catholic
  • 4% Protestants
  • 2% Muslim
  • 17% other


The weather dominated by northeast trade winds, which brings dry and hot air, lies in the transition between the subtropical to the tropical climate.

Cape Verde

It’s very hot all year round. The temperatures often rise up to 35 ° C.

The rainy season, with irregular heavy rains, lasts from August to October.

Currency / finance

Currency unit: Cape Verde Escudo (CVE)

Classification: 1 Cape Verde Escudo = 100 Centavos

ATMs: not available

International credit cards: Only in the larger hotels on the island of Sal

Regulations: The national currency may not be imported or exported.

There is no limit to the amount of foreign currencies that can be imported. The export is only allowed in the amount of the declared import.

US dollars and euros are best exchanged in small denominations.

Customs regulations

The following may be carried duty-free:

  • 200 cigarettes or 50 cigars or 250 g of tobacco
  • 1 liter of alcoholic beverages

(Information applies to people aged 18 and over)

Tourists and people in transit can bring items of personal use with them duty-free.

Travel advice

In many areas, the infrastructure is not necessarily geared towards tourists.

In particular, the flight and ship connections between the inhabited islands are unreliable and do not necessarily take place at the specified times.

Furthermore, emergency medical care is not guaranteed on all islands.

Behavioral advice

To avoid accidents and robberies, you should be accompanied by a local guide on mountain hikes.


Since the country has hardly any raw materials worth mentioning and there is even a shortage of fresh water, there is almost no industry.

Beans, potatoes, corn and tropical fruits are grown on small plantations.

Fishing generates more than half of all export revenues.

Industries: fishing, food production, salt mining, shipbuilding

Natural resources: fish, limestone, salt

Land use:

  • Usable land: 11%
  • Grain cultivation: 0%
  • Pasture area: 6%
  • Forests: 0%
  • other: 83%


Most of the areas are characterized by steppes with isolated bushes and grasses.

Stately reforestation programs (acacias, eucalyptus trees) are intended to halt further decay of the vegetation.


The few native animal species consist of small rodents, sea turtles and many different species of birds.

In contrast, marine animals are particularly rich in species. These include sharks, rays, tuna and many different colorful fish that invite you to dive.

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