Description & main attractions
Conveniently placed close to the traditional sailing route from the Canaries to the Caribbean or South Atlantic, ships on transatlantic voyages have always found the Cape Verdes a useful stopover, although nowadays it is modern yachts that call here instead of square riggers and steamers.
In the past, yachts only stopped at Mindelo on the island of São Vicente, usually in an emergency or to buy fuel, but the islands now attract an increasing number of cruising boats that take their time to explore this interesting archipelago.
Yachting facilities are limited, but the opening of a marina in Mindelo has greatly improved matters and may be followed by similar projects on some of the other islands, as the authorities are making great efforts to expand the tourism industry of this country that is bereft of any reliable sources of revenue.
Although lying close to Africa, the islands’ culture reflects their close historic association with Portugal rather than their geographical position. The climate tends to be very dry, the scenery is rather bleak, and they have had severe drought problems throughout their history. There are ten main islands, divided into the Windward group (Barlavento) and Leeward group (Sotavento). São Tiago is the largest island and the capital Praia is located on its south shore.
The climate is typically tropical with no cool season, although there is a small variation of temperature around the year, the coolest period being December to March. August is the hottest month, with an average of 27°C/81°F, and January the coolest, 23°C/73°F. Rainfall is limited to a few downpours between late August and October, although there are years with little or no rain. The prevailing winds are the northeast trade winds, which can be replaced inshore by a daily sea breeze.
Host marina / Port information
The new marina in Mindelo has good facilities, with diesel, water, electricity and wifi internet connection. Some repairs, including engineering, rigging and sail, are also available, as is a 100-ton lift. Provisioning is good.
Location on the map
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