Cape Verde: useful information


Useful tourist information travel to Cape Verde, including all the things to know before leaving for a trip or a holiday in this archipelago, including required documents, when to go and how to get there.

Cape Verde in a nutshell

  • Capital: Praia (Santiago Island)
  • Area in sq km: 4,033
  • Population: 512,096
  • Religion: mainly Catholic

Where is it

Cape Verde flag The African archipelago of Cape Verde is made up of 10 islands and 8 islets located in the Atlantic Ocean off the Senegalese coast.

These islands of volcanic origin differ from each other, both from the point of view of the reliefs and of the vegetation.

Most of the islands are mountainous, like the island of Fogo which reaches 2,829 meters, on the top of the Pico do Cano volcano.

The islands closest to the coast of Africa are flat and deserted, with long stretches of sand, such as the island of Sal and the Boavista island.

Which islands to visit

The islands are divided into two groups in relation to the trade winds.

Barlovento islands (windward), to which belong the islands of Santo Antao, Sao Vicente, Santa Luzia, Sao Nicolau, Ilha do Sal, Boa Vista.

Sotavento islands (leeward), which includes the islands of Fogo, Santiago, Brava and Maio.

These islands are an ideal destination for windsurfing and water sports enthusiasts.


The climate of the Cape Verde archipelago is tropical dry, the average annual temperature fluctuates around 25 ° C and the temperature variations, thanks to the influence of the ocean, do not exceed 10 ° C.

At sea the temperature fluctuates in the months of February / March around 21 ° C and in the months of September / October around 25 ° C.

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In theory, the rainy season concerns the months of August, September, October, but in reality it rains little and the rainfall varies from year to year, from island to island and also from place to place.

The archipelago is affected by a wind generally coming from the north east, which increases in intensity until the month of July.

The warm winds from the African continent generally arrive in January / February.


Following the discovery of the Cape Verde islands (in 1460), by the Portuguese and the subsequent population of the islands, a people arose deriving from the union of Europeans and Africans, who acquired their own identity and language, which today constitutes the majority of the population, alongside a minority of Africans and Europeans.

The population living abroad is higher than the resident population.

Time zone

In Cape Verde it is necessary to move the clock hands 2 hours behind Italy, 3 hours behind when there is daylight saving time in Italy.

Spoken language

The official language of Cape Verde is Portuguese. Crioulo is widespread, which would be a mixture of Portuguese and African languages.


The drought and the scarce resources of these islands have pushed the Cape Verdeans to emigrate abroad, who send remittances of money to family members residing in the archipelago.

This money revenue, together with humanitarian aid, is a very important source for the country's economy.

Agriculture, heavily influenced by the amount of rain that has fallen, is based on the cultivation of maize, pumpkin, beans, sweet potato and cassava.

Fishing can count on a very rich sea and creates a subsistence trade as well as supplying food to many Cape Verdeans.

Intensive exploitation of the sea is reserved by the government for Japanese and Europeans in exchange for money.

Tourist presences are increasing, thanks to the investments of foreigners, attracted by the incentives provided by the laws of the Cape Verde government.

When to go

A characteristic of these islands is the presence of the wind, which blows without distinction of seasons.

The best months to visit Cape Verde are from April to June.

Necessary documents

To enter Cape Verde you need a valid passport and an entry visa issued by the Embassy of Cape Verde in Rome or by the Honorary Consulates of Turin, Florence, Palermo and Naples.


- The international prefix for making calls from Italy to Cape Verde is: 00238

- The international prefix for making calls from Cape Verde to Italy is: 0039

- GSM mobile phones work if enabled for international roaming

- The costs of the calls (landline and mobile phone) are high

There are internet cafes, where you can connect to the internet and make calls at affordable prices.


The electric current is 220 volts.

Money and Credit Card

The official currency of Cape Verde is the Cape Verdean Escudo (CV esc). For payments to be made on the island of Sal and often also on the Boavista island, euros are normally accepted, while in the other islands escudos are needed.

In Italy it is not possible to exchange euros in escudos (and vice versa), if necessary it is advisable to exchange them at the bank "Caixa Economica de Cabo Verde" which is located in the islands of Sal, Santiago, Sao Vicente, Santo Antao and Fogo, as, unlike of the other banks, does not withhold exchange fees.

ATMs are not usable.

Cash advances can be obtained from banks at a rather high commission with the Visa credit card and often also with the Master Card (the only ones accepted).

The use of ATMs is not recommended, for problems that may arise, in the event that the machine does not return the card.

How to get

The two international airports of Cape Verde are located in Sal (Sal island) and Praia (Santiago island) (flights from Italy always arrive in Sal).

TAP, the Portuguese flag carrier, offers flights from some Italian airports via Lisbon to Cape Verde.

TACV Cabo Verde Airlines, the national airline of Cape Verde, operates through code-sharing flights and relies only on tourism intermediation for reservations.

Neos offers charter flights from Milan Malpensa, Bologna, Verona and Rome to Cape Verde.


No compulsory vaccination is required to go to Cape Verde.

Vaccination against yellow fever is required only for those coming from infected areas.

However, vaccinations against hepatitis A and B and antitifica are recommended.

It is recommended to drink only bottled water without adding ice and not to eat raw vegetables.

It is good to take out health insurance before departure.

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