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Boa Vista island, Cape Verde
View towards southeast from the sand dunes at the west coast of Boa Vista island, with Rocha Estáncia hill, Cape Verde.
Image: Simo Räsänen
Flag of Cape Verde
Flag of Cape Verde
Location map of Cape Verde. Where in Africa is Cape Verde?
Location map of Cape Verde

A virtual guide to the islands of Cabo Verde, or Cape Verde, an island nation on an archipelago of volcanic origin in the Atlantic Ocean off the northwestern coast of Africa, about 600 km west of Senegal. Cape Verde shares maritime borders with Gambia, Guinea-Bissau, Mauritania, and Senegal.

Cape Verde is divided into two island groups, the Barlavento (windward) islands with the islands of Santo Antão, São Vicente, Santa Luzia, São Nicolau, Sal, and Boa Vista and the Sotavento (leeward) islands with the islands of Maio, Santiago, Fogo, and Brava.

The group of 10 islands combined land area of 4,033 km² is about 1.5 times the size of Luxembourg or slightly larger than the size of Rhode Island.

Cabo Verde's population of 525,000 (2015 census) are descendants from the first permanent inhabitants in the late 15th-century: Portuguese colonists, West African slaves, and some Italian traders. The archipelago was the first European settlement in the tropics. Today it is one of the most developed democratic countries in Africa.

Largest city and the capital is Praia, located on Santiago island. Spoken languages are Portuguese (official) and Kabuverdianu (a Portuguese based Cape Verdean Creole). About 95% of the population are Christian.

Republic of Cape Verde | República de Cabo Verde

Country Profile

The uninhabited islands were discovered and colonized by the Portuguese in the 15th century; Cape Verde subsequently became a trading center for African slaves and later an important coaling and resupply stop for whaling and transatlantic shipping. Following independence in 1975, and a tentative interest in unification with Guinea-Bissau, a one-party system was established and maintained until multi-party elections were held in 1990.

Cape Verde continues to exhibit one of Africa's most stable democratic governments. Repeated droughts during the second half of the 20th century caused significant hardship and prompted heavy emigration. As a result, Cape Verde's expatriate population is greater than its domestic one. Most Cape Verdeans have both African and Portuguese ancestors.

related countries: Portugal

Official Name:
República de Cabo Verde
short form: Cabo Verde
int'l long form: Republic of Cape Verde
int'l short form: Cape Verde

ISO Country Code: cv, CPV

Local Time = UTC -1h
Actual Time: Thu-July-18  00:34

Country Calling Code: +238

Capital City: Praia (pop. 100 000) on the island Sao Tiago (Santiago)

Other Cities: Mindelo (pop. 68 000)

Government: Republic.
Independence: 5 July 1975 (from Portugal).
Constitution: 1982; revised 1992, 1995, and 1999.

Location: Group of islands in the North Atlantic Ocean some 500 km from the west coast of Africa (Senegal).
Area: 4,033 km² (1,557 sq. mi.)
Terrain: Rugged volcanic islands.
Highest point: Mt. Fogo 2 829 m (a volcano on Fogo Island)

Climate: Tropical dry, with two seasons. Dry season: November to July, tempered by trade winds. Rainy season: August to October.

Nationality: Cape Verdean(s).
Population: 525,000 (2015 census)
Ethnic groups: Creole (mixed African and Portuguese), African, European.
Religions: Roman Catholic, Protestant.
Languages: Portuguese (official); Crioulo (a blend of Creole Portuguese and West African)
Literacy: 76%.

Natural resources: Salt, pozzolana (tuff), limestone.

Agriculture products: Bananas, corn, beans, sugarcane, coffee, fruits, vegetables, livestock products.

Industries: Fish and fish products, food and beverages, ship repair, furniture, metal products, tourism.

Exports partners: Australia 83%, Spain 8.6% (2015)

Imports partners: Portugal 29.9%, Australia 26.4%, Netherlands 11.2%, Spain 5.6%, China 5.6% (2015)

Currency: Cape Verdean Escudo (CVE)
Presidential palace in Praia on the island of Santiago, Cape Verde
Presidential palace in Praia on the island of Santiago, Cape Verde.
Image: David Kirsch

Political System
The government of Cabo Verde is since 1990 a parliamentary representative democratic republic, largely modeled on the Portuguese system. Chief of State is the President, he is elected by an absolute majority vote through a two-round system.
Head of Government is the Prime Minister, he is nominated by the national assembly (parliament). Cape Verde has a unicameral National Assembly (Assembleia Nacional).

Official Sites of Cape Verde

Note: External links will open in a new browser window.

Governo de Cabo Verde
The Cape Verde Government site.

Presidência da República
Presidency of CV.

Assembleia Nacional de Cabo Verde
The National Assembly of Cape Verde.

Núcleo Operacional para a Sociedade de Informação NOSI
Cape Verde's Operational Unit for the Information Society. (in Portuguese)

Diplomatic Missions
Embaixada de Cabo Verde Berlim
Embassy of the Republic of Cape Verde, Berlin.
Consulado Geral de Cabo Verde em Roterdão
Cape Verde Consulate General in Rotterdam, Netherlands.
Embassy of Cape Verde in Washington
The embassy website provides very comprehensive information on Cape Verde.

Instituto Nacional de Estatística de Cabo Verde
Cape Verde in figures.


Map of Cape Verde
Administrative map of Cape Verde.

Google Earth Google Earth Cape Verde
Searchable map and satellite view of Cape Verde.
Google Earth Google Earth Praia
Searchable map and satellite view of Cape Verde's capital city.

Map of Africa
Political Map of Africa.
Relief Map of Africa



A Semana
CV news.
Expresso das Ilhas
Island news (in Portuguese)
News from Cape Verde, Angola, Guinea-Bissau, Mozambique, Sao Tome and Príncipe (in Portuguese)

Radiotelevisão Caboverdiana (RTC)
Publicly owned TV network, a radio and television station broadcasting local programs from Cape Verde, radio and television station broadcasting local programs from Cape Verde, Portugal and Brazil.

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Arts & Culture

Associação Mindelact
Artist und Cultural Association of Cape Verde (in Portuguese).
A comprehensive guide to the islands.

Cape Verde related magazine (in Portuguese).

Cesária Évora
The "Barefoot Diva" (1941 – 2011) was called the ambassador of Morna, a music and dance genre from Cape Verde, considered to be the national music of Cape Verde.
Cesaria Evora - Sodade
Listen to Cesária Évora on YouTube.
Suzanna Lubrano
Official website of the Cape Verdean born female singer.
Nha Sonho
Listen to Suzanna Lubrano on YouTube.
Space Echo
Listen to The Mystery Behind The Cosmic Sound Of Cabo Verde on YouTube.
How a mysterious ghost ship brought cosmic disco to Cape Verde
The story behind 'The Cosmic Sound Of Cabo Verde'.
Sounds of Cabo Verde
Listen to Sounds of Cabo Verde by Afrobeat.
Bitori - Bitori Nha Bibinha / Legend Of Funaná
The Forbidden Music of The Cape Verde Islands on YouTube.

Cape Verde islands
The vulcanic islands of Cape Verde
Market in Santa Catarina, Assomada on the island of Santiago, Cape Verde
Market in Santa Catarina, Assomada on the island of Santiago.
Image: imke.stahlmann

Business & Economy

Banco de Cabo Verde
The Central Bank of Cape Verde.

Bolsa de Valores de Cabo Verde
CV Stock Exchange.

Câmara de Comércio, Indústria e Turismo Portugal Cabo Verde
Site of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry Portugal/Cape Verde provides information about Portuguese-Cape Verdean business relations (in Portuguese)

Cape Verde Property Portal
Property sale in Cape Verde.


CV Yellow Pages  
Cape Verde business directory.

Transportes Aereos de Cabo Verde
TACV is the flag carrier of the Republic of Cape Verde.
Enapor - Portos de Cabo Verde
Site provides some information about Ports of CV.
Surf at Boa Vista, Cape Verde Islands
Surf at Boa Vista, Cape Verde Islands.
Image: Miguel Discart

Travel and Tour Consumer Information

Destination Cape Verde Islands - Travel and Tour Guides

Discover Cabo Verde islands: Praia, Cidade Velha, Salt mines of Sal
Barlaventos, the northern island group: Santo Antão, São Vicente, Santa Luzia, São Nicolau, Sal, and Boa Vista.
Sotaventos the southern island group:
Maio, Santiago, Fogo, and Brava.

Agência Nacional de Viagens
Regrettably the National travel agency has less information to offer.
A comprehensive guide to the islands.

CaboVerde virtual community provides insight and country information.

Cape Verde
WWW pages about Cape Verde and a guide to the islands of Cape Verde.
Cabo Verde Foto Gallery
Photos of Cape Verde.

Câmara Municipal da Praia
Official website of the city of Praia.
Mindelo Infos
Mindelo tourism information (in French)
São Filipe
Site about São Filipe a town on the island Fogo.

UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Cape Verde

World Heritage Site Cidade Velha, Historic Centre of Ribeira Grande
The town of Ribeira Grande on the island of Santiago was the first European colonial outpost in the tropics at the end of the 15th century, it was renamed to Cidade Velha in the late 18th century.

Fortaleza Real de San Felipe at Cidade Velha (Ribeira Grande) on Santiago Island
Fortaleza Real de San Felipe at Cidade Velha (Ribeira Grande) on Santiago Island.
Image: David Gil

The city of Mindelo, Cape Verde.

How to carry bottled water?
How to carry bottled water?
Image: Pixo7000
School kids, World Water Day, Cape Verde
In Cabo Verde, the celebrations of World Water Day 2015 were mainly targeting school students to raise awareness on water conservation issues.


Universidade de Cabo Verde
University of Cape Verde was established in 2006, the in three locations: ISE (Instituto Superior de Educação - Institute of Education) is located in Praia, ISECMAR (Instituto Superior de Engenharias e Ciências do Mar - Institute of Marine Sciences and Engineering) is located in Mindelo and INIDA (Instituto Nacional de Investigação e Desenvolvimento Agrário - National Institute of Agricultural Research and Development) located in São Jorge dos Órgãos, Santiago (in Portuguese)

Universidade Jean Piaget de Cabo Verde
Official site of Jean Piaget University located in Praia, the university is operating a second location in Mindelo on São Vicente. (in Portuguese)

Environment & Nature

Instituto Nacional de Gestão dos Recursos Hídricos
The National Institute for Management of Water Resources (in Portuguese).

INDP-Instituto Nacional de Desenvolvimento das Pescas
National scientific institute for the developement of fishery (in Portuguese).



História de Cabo Verde
History of Cape Verde (in Portuguese)

History of Cape Verde
Wikipedia entry about Cape Verde's history.


Sources and additional Information on Cape Verde

BBC Country Profile: Cape Verde

GlobalEDGE: Cape Verde

FAO: Cape Verde

GlobalEDGE: Cape Verde

The Heritage Foundation: Cape Verde

Human Rights Watch: Cape Verde

OEC: Cape Verde

Reporters Without Borders: Cape Verde

Wikipedia: Cape Verde

The World Factbook -- Cape Verde

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