THE TROPICAL BOA VISTA
Take a cultural tour with us around Boa Vista and discover the tropical beauty of Cape Verde’s third largest island
Words: Emily Georgieva
Photography: Aachal Lal
23 February 2019
The desert-like island Boa Vista is known for its wild beaches, the unique music originating from Cape Verde, and the sea turtle that one can see swimming in the deep blue waters around the island. The turquoise water and the fine white sand covering the coastline gives the place a foreign, undiscovered charm. Boa Vista is the third largest island from the Cape Verde family and here’s what you need to know about it.
Although discovered in 1460, Boa Vista wasn’t inhabited until the year 1620 when the first settlement was established in a small village. The salt deposits in the area of Povoação Velha was a reason for the village to become a target for pirates and the area was exploited by the English. This led to people moving away from the village in search for a new home.
There are areas around the island where only about 10 people live at, sometimes the number goes up to 100. Those areas are calm and define the character of Boa Vista. Back when the first settlements were established, as much as 4 000 people lived on the island, while there are around 14 450 inhabitants of the area.
Boa Vista, also spelt as Boavista, is known for its charitable involvement. The locals value their home and want to preserve the wildness of it. Humanitarian projects have been launched in the area in order to guard and protect the animals. If you ever plan a trip to the beaches of Boa Vista, consider the values of the locals and travel consciously.
There is a lot you can do to explore the area. Head to a seafood restaurant to try the fresh food that locals prepare on the island or visit Centro de Artes e Cultura to see a photography and art exhibitions. If you want to know more about the history of the island, you can visit the abandoned shipwreck in Santa Maria or plan a trip to the village of Curral Velho, which the locals moved away from a long time ago. There are several café places to choose from, some looking like typical island locations having a boat-shape design such as Wakan Bar or more traditional ones. Boa Vista also does outdoor cinema so you will be able to make the most out of your long day spend under the sun at the golden beaches of the island.
Have you been to Boa Vista already? Write to us and tell us about the culture of the place and what made an impression on you about the island.