Praia is the busiest city in Cape Verde and has been its capital since 1770. Located on Santiago Island’s southern end, the city has good weather year round and is divided into many smaller districts. Plateau is the city center, Sucupira is the bazaar area, and most of the other districts are residential. There are no traditional tourist sights in the city, but Praia is the gateway to exploring the rest of Cape Verde’s enchanting and beautiful islands.
Though small in area, Cape Verde’s islands have an incredible array of landscapes. Verdant valleys blanket Santo Antão in green, Maio is home to remarkable flatlands and the centerpiece of Fogo is a volcanic peak streaked with lava frozen into rivers. Boa Vista and Sal are favorite destinations for their white sand beaches. This variance makes Cape Verde, and Praia, a paradise for windsurfers, hikers, anglers and other adventurers.
Ferries offer daily trips from Praia to Fogo, where the highest peak in the county rises dramatically from Chã das Caldeiras, an ancient craters. Still active, the volcano last erupted in 1995, but its black slopes remain covered with coffee and wine grapes cultivated by local farmers. Visitors can climb the cone of the volcano, but a guide is recommended for the three-hour trek. Once traversing the slippery cinder-covered slopes, visitors who make it to the top are sweetly rewarded with magnificent views of the entire island.
Praia Geographical Location
Praia is the largest city of Cape Verde and is situated on the southern tip of Sao Tiago. Valleys surround the city of Praia and its city center is known as “The Plateau”.
There are approximately 128,000 people living in Praia.
Portuguese is the official language of Cape Verde although Crioulo, which is a combination of Portuguese and West African words, is also common.
Praia Predominant Religion
- Although there are no formal statistics, the large majority of the Cape Verde population practices Roman Catholic with a small percentage practicing the Protestant religion.
The Escudo is the official currency of Cape Verde
Praia’s arid climate means it is very hot and dry throughout the year. There are many months in which is does not rain at all while August and September bring most of the year’s rain.
Praia Main Attractions
- Fortaleza Real de San Felipe
- Praia Mar
- Submarine Tours
Other Attraction in Praia
- The Blue Eye
- Hiking Ribeira Grande