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Cape Verde Holidays 

Dubbed the African Caribbean, Cape Verde is a collection of islands with white sand beaches, leafy jungles and a blend of Portuguese and African cultures. The 10 islands (and 5 islets) lie off the west coast of Africa and offer year round sunshine, beautiful beaches, top dive sites and wonderful wildlife. Each island offers something different, from the lively Sao Vicente to the beach studded island of Sal. Whether you’re going away as a couple, family or group, Cape Verde holidays offer a tropical island escape less than six hours from the UK.

30 °C

The climate is tropical and temperatures range from 24 to 30°C all year round.

5 hours 30 minutes

Amilcar Cabral International Airport (SID) on the island of Sal is around 17km north of the main resort of Santa Maria.

Book a cheap holiday to Cape Verde with Airtours and discover beautiful beaches, great dive sites and wonderful wildlife. 

Featured holidays in Cape Verde

Hotel Pontao

Santa Maria, Cape Verde

7 Nights, Bed & Breakfast
Hotel highlights
  • Inviting swimming pool
  • Located in the centre of Santa Maria, only 400 from the beach
  • Sun terrace with sunloungers and parasols

TripAdvisor Traveller rating

Based on 147 reviews

What is included ?

  • 15kgs Standard Luggage Allowance
  • ATOL Protection
  • Resort service
  • Return Transfers

£ 356

smartline Crioula

Santa Maria, Cape Verde

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

TripAdvisor Traveller rating

Based on 1620 reviews

Reviews
Based on 8 reviews

What is included ?

  • 15kgs Standard Luggage Allowance
  • ATOL Protection
  • Resort service
  • Return Transfers

£ 492

Oasis Belorizonte

Santa Maria, Cape Verde

7 Nights, All Inclusive
Hotel highlights
  • Located directly on Santa Maria beach
  • À la carte restaurant and bar
  • Scuba-diving centre

TripAdvisor Traveller rating

Based on 1370 reviews

Reviews
Based on 6 reviews

What is included ?

  • 15kgs Standard Luggage Allowance
  • ATOL Protection
  • Resort service
  • Return Transfers

£ 570

There's plenty to keep you occupied in Cape Verde. Each island has a different landscape and identity, from Sal, with its beautiful beaches and windsurfing hot spots to the tiny island of Fogo (fire island), which is home to a volcano. Book an All Inclusive or Self Catering stay in this great holiday destination and be as lazy or as active as you like. 

You'll most likely fly into the island of Sal and visit the main resort of Santa Maria on the south coast. Here you'll find long white beaches which stretch off in either direction, with turquoise waters which are popular with windsurfers. One of Cape Verde's best beaches is the 18km long Curralinho on the island of Boa Vista. It's easy to find a quiet patch here and enjoy the views of the Monte de Santo Antonio mountain range.

The sun shines all year round in Cape Verde which means there's always an outdoor activity to try your hand at. On Boa Vista, explore the impressive sand dunes on a quad biking safari or follow the trekking trails up Monte Gordo, Sao Nicolau's highest peak. Popular watersports include windsurfing and kite surfing on Sal. There are more than 70 ancient shipwrecks in the waters surrounding the islands so diving is popular here too.

Several beaches on Sal and Boa Vista are home to Loggerhead turtles. Join an evening excursion and you may see eggs hatching on the sand. Keep your eyes peeled for birds including the Cape Verde Warbler and the rare Raso Lark. Whales and dolphins can often be spotted offshore and you can expect to see all sorts of tropical reef fish underwater.

Cape Verde is best for

Beach lovers: You're spoilt for choice when it comes to finding a patch of sand in Cape Verde, as all of the islands have beautiful beaches.  

Wildlife watchers: Keep your eyes peeled for birds including the Grey Headed Kingfisher and the rare Raso Lark. Humpback whales and dolphins can often be spotted offshore and Loggerhead turtles nest throughout the year. 

Active travellers: The different landscapes on each island means you’ll have plenty of opportunities to try out activities including quad biking, trekking and windsurfing.


Fast facts

Language: Portuguese is the official language, although Creole (a fusion of African and European languages) is used in conversation and can differ from island to island. 

Currency: Cape Verde Escudo (CVE). Some major locations such as hotels and airports may also accept Euros.

Local Time: One hour behind GMT/UK time.

Fly To: Amilcar Cabral International Airport (SID) on the island of Sal, around 17km north of the main resort of Santa Maria.

Flight Time from the UK: Approximately 5 hours 30 minutes from London.

Tourist Information: Further tourist information on Cape Verde can be found at http://www.capeverde.com/.

Visa and Health: Before you travel to Cape Verde with Airtours visit https://www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice/cape-verde for help and advice on visa requirements and health considerations for your holiday.


Weather and climate

Temperature: Around 24 to 30°C all year round. 

Best time to visit Cape Verde: Cape Verde is a year round destination that sees between 6 and 9 hours of sunshine per day. You're unlikely to get rain for nine months of the year and even in the wet season between August and October, the rainfall is low. September is the hottest month of the year when temperatures are in the low 30s.


Getting Around

By Train: There aren’t any railways on any of the islands in Cape Verde.  

By Taxi: Taxis are easy to find in the main resorts and are generally cheap. Always agree on a price with the driver beforehand. Most drivers speak English.

By Boat: Ferries and catamarans connect some (but not all) of the islands. Some of the crossings can be rocky, especially in the winter months, and services can often be delayed. 

By Hire Car: Hire cars can be booked in advance or when you arrive. 

By Bus: The local 'alguers' buses are the cheapest way to get around. They're more like vans or trucks than buses and pick up people at unmarked stops and drop them off on request.


Events

For music fans: On the island of São Vicente, the Baía das Gatas festival is a three day celebration of Cape Verde's music scene which combines different styles of music, including folk music, orchestras and DJs. It takes place every August over a full moon weekend and is known as 'Africa's Woodstock'. 

For dancers: Inspired by Brazilian carnivals, the Creole Carnival takes place in February on the island of São Vicente, where you can head to the streets of Mindelo to enjoy colourful street parades, dancing and more. 

For something traditional: The festival of São João (St John) is celebrated on all the islands in June. Expect folk dancing, street parties and music.


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