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Savvy travellers have been booking holidays to Cape Verde for a while now. And when you see its beaches and lunar-like landscapes, you'll understand why.

The Cape Verde Islands

Cape Verde is located off the west coast of Africa, and is made up of 10 islands floating in the Atlantic Ocean. It takes around six hours to fly here from the UK, and sunny weather throughout the year means there's plenty of choice for when to go. They’re still fairly new to the travel circuit, which makes them a great pick for off-the-beaten-track breaks. But with their long sandy beaches, lively surf and modern hotels, they’re quickly making a name for themselves.


Cape Verde’s most popular island is Sal,, which is known for its striking, moon-like landscape. It’s dotted with colourful, cobbled towns, like Santa Maria on the southern shores, where you’ll find surf shops, traditional restaurants and a pretty square lined with al fresco cafés. The main attraction, though, is the beach, which stretches along the coast for eight kilometres. Watersports are a big draw, but the sea can sometimes get a little choppy, so sunbathing's a popular fallback. The hotels, meanwhile, are like little villages in their own right. RIU has a handful of properties near the seafront – like the Riu Palace Cabo Verde – which line up tonnes of activities and All Inclusive deals that run 24 hours a day.

Boa Vista

You’ll find plenty more in the way of beaches over on Boa Vista, which translates to ‘beautiful view’. In fact, the sugar-coloured sands here halo the coastline for 55 uninterrupted kilometres. Praia Chave deserves a special mention, thanks to its creamy swathes and shape-shifting dunes.

Cultural melting pot

Whichever island you opt for, expect a melting pot of cultures. The Portuguese originally discovered Cape Verde, so there’s a mixture of African, Brazilian and Portuguese influences. You’ll see it in the island’s music, fashion and – perhaps most clearly – the food.