Cyclists in Sal
 

The Cape Verde islands

Cape VErde ffrom Google Earth

Warmer than the Canaries in Winter - Perfect for All-Year round training.

The Cape Verde Islands are a small archipelago about 350 miles off the coast of Africa and about 800 miles further south than the Canary Islands.

They have weather similar to the Caribbean but don't suffer the hurricanes that devastate that part of the world. In fact,the hurricanes that hit the west coast of America normally begin as weather systems in or near the Cape Verde Islands.

The Islands spewed from volcanoes on the ocean floor, but the only remaining active volcano is on the island of Fogo, that actually erupted earlier this year (2015). The land is consequently made from volcanic rock making the landscape often similar to Lanzarote.

The Cape Verdean people are very friendly and laid back with a "Mantra" of "No Stress". That means that visitors have to leave behind the busyness of big city life when they're here, everything happens at a much slower and probably healthier pace.

Sal Island from Google Earth

We're going to Sal Island.

As a past colony of Portugal the Islands still have close ties to that country. Portuguese is consequently spoken by all Islanders, although the local language is a Portuguese Creole. The local currency is the Escudo, but as this is fixed at 110 escudos to the Euro, the Euro is accepted everywhere and change is even given in Euro or Escudos. Fresh fish is in abundance, carpacio of Tuna and Wahu being a tasty starter to any meal. Like everywhere, restaurants range from reasonable to expensive, those with beach views generally being higher priced.

Sal Island

Sal is the most developed of the Islands in Cape Verde and we hold all our camps there. You can experience some of the best water sports in the world, so if you have ever wanted to learn Wind or Kite surfing this is the place to come, with rounds of the World Championships regularly being held there and winds nearly always suitable for both.

The Island of Sal has the most advanced infrastructure of all the Cape Verde islands. It's therefore the one with the best roads, hotels, restaurants, bars, banks and whose residents are most likely to speak English.

The town of Santa Maria covers the whole south end of the Island. It's beaches complete with powdery sand are never crowded - you will be able to find space. Here you can relax, take a wind surfing or kite surfing lesson or simply enjoy a swim in the Atlantic surf.

The locals bring fish into the pier and although there is generally always something going on, there will be a secluded spot where you can relax and read a book without being disturbed.

Hotels in Santa Maria

Santa Maria is where all the main hotels are based.

Our choice for the camp accommodation is the SurfZone apartment block right in the center of town.

In this close up of Santa Maria you can see most of the hotels. From the Melia Tortuga, just beyond Ponta Preta where the larger waves break, around the coastline to the pier and beyond, right down to the Leme Bedge apartments.

There is a new Hilton Hotel directly in on the Ocean front - directly in frontof the Dunas. Last time we were there the restaurant on the beach was a great place to have lunch.