Posts

kite beach sal

African Beach Games will be in Sal in 2019

On Thursday of last week (14 June 2018) the one-year countdown for the African Beach Games commenced. These games will take place on the island of Sal, Cape Verde from 14 – 23 June 2019.
This small African country will host the first ever African Beach Games following a bid by the Cape Verdean Olympic Committee. The Association of National Olympic Committees of Africa (ACNOA), chose Cape Verde because of the advantages the islands offer, particularly in respect of beach and water sports.

The African Beach Games

Cape Verde is honoured to be invited to hold the inaugural African Beach Games. The games will involve participants from 54 African countries, and will involve 11 different sports. Up to 1000 athletes will descend on the island of Sal for this major sporting event.
The sports involved are as follows:
  • Athletics
  • Basketball 3×3
  • Beach Handball
  • Coastal Rowing
  • Beach Football
  • Freestyle football
  • Beach tennis
  • Beach Volleyball
  • Karate Kata
  • Kite surfing
  • Open water swimming
For more information click here.

Mascot

For these inaugural games, the organisers have adopted the Creole word ‘Kretxeu’ which means loved-one. Kretxeu is a yellow loggerhead turtle wearing blue shorts. Cape Verde is famous for its turtles that nest in the sands on the islands.
african beach games mascot

Where is Cape Verde?

Cape Verde (now more correctly known as Cabo Verde) is approximately 500km west from the coast of Senegal and comprises 10 islands, 9 of which are inhabited. The islands were discovered in the 15th Century and for many years were a Portuguese colony; however Cabo Verde has been an independent country since 1974. The country offers sun all year round, friendly locals and wonderful beaches.
The Government of Cape Verde is backing the venture with some financial assistance and by being present and supporting and encouraging the proposals. The Prime Minister of Cape Verde, José Ulisses de Pina Correia e Silva was present at the launch.

Why Sal?

Sal is one of the eastern islands of the archipelago and is also the most developed in terms of tourism. The azure blue Atlantic ocean laps the white sandy beaches that stretch for miles.
Sal is Portuguese for salt and is so named because of the salt industry that was once a major employer. Fishing and tourism are now significant contributors to the economy of this island following the decline of the salt trade. The main centre of tourism is on the south end of the island in the town of Santa Maria. Santa Maria offers a variety of accommodation from self-catering apartments and villas through to large all-inclusive resort hotThe island of Sal is a mecca for kite surfing, windsurfing, surfing and diving, and has become a significant tourist destination over the past few years. Sal provides an ideal location for these games.
santiago praia market stall

Market stall in Praia, Santiago

The markets in Cape Verde are colourful places. They normally have a good selection of fruit and vegetables, some of which are relatively unknown to many European visitors. The large market in Plato, the main shopping area in the centre of Praia, where this was taken, is a lively place and well worth a visit. The market stall holders are usually happy, jolly people who will be very keen to get your custom.

new maio port

The new Maio port facility

The construction of the new Maio port looks all set to proceed. It has been reported that the funding is now in place. The estimated cost of the project is €15m, together with a further €1.5m for the access road to the new port and training for young people on the island. The African Development Bank has backed the project. The president of the Bank will be in Cape Verde in July and this will coincide with the launch of the construction tender. Following technical investigations and studies, the new port will be located on the site of the existing port, close to Vila do Maio (Porto Inglês). It is understood that the ferry between Praia and Maio will be able to continue during the construction period. The new facilities should improve the experience for people traveling by ferry between Praia and the island of Maio.

green hills on santo antao

Green hills on the island of Santo Antão

Santo Antão is the westernmost of the Cape Verde islands and is one of the greenest. Many people who visit Cape Verde will be familiar with islands such as Sal and Boa Vista, which are in large part desert. The further west you go, the higher the mountains and the greener the islands. Santo Antão offers great hiking opportunities. The scenery is spectacular and there are green hills, lovely little villages on hillsides and rocky outcrops.

santa maria sunset

Sunset at Santa Maria on Sal Island, Cape Verde

Sunsets in Cape Verde are very often beautiful. This picture was taken at Santa Maria on Sal Island as the sun sets over the beach and the moored boats. You will be very unlucky if you visit Cape Verde and don’t see a lovely sunset. The opportunities for taking a lovely sunset photograph are many. The sun could be setting over the sea, over a neighbouring island, or behind mountains.

sunset on trees on Fogo

Trees in the sunset on Fogo

This picture was taken on the island of Fogo, as the sun was setting. The golden light of sunset produced this beautiful scene of trees on the side of the mountain. Fogo is an island that is known for the volcano crater, which is certainly well worth a visit. However, there is more to this island than the volcano and the island also provides a stepping stone to the neighbouring island of Brava.

cabo verde airlines

TACV now known as Cabo Verde Airlines

TACV, the Cape Verde national airline, following recent rebranding, is now known as Cabo Verde Airlines. In addition the airline is planning to partner with TAAG, the Angolan national airline. TAAG abandoned flights between Luanda and Praia in 2016, because it was not considered to be a profitable route. The new agreement between the two airlines is planned to lead to a reinstatement of this route. In addition, the TACV current management agreement with Loftleidir Icelandic will cease in August of this year.

This rebranding is hoped to make for a stronger identity with the Cape Verde. This is part of the company’s restructuring.

Cabo Verde Airlines also hopes to add a new route between Cape Verde and Salvador de Bahia, Brazil. It also plans to strengthen its connectivity with Recife, Fortaleza, Milan, Paris and Lisbon.

capital city Praia

Capital City of Cape Verde – Praia

The Praia is the capital city of Cape Verde and is located on the southern end of the island of Santiago. The main shopping area is on a raised outcrop in the centre of the city which is known as Plateau. Plateau is the main shopping area. Here there is a pleasant tree lined pedestrian street, with cafes and restaurants. Praia is gradually being smartened up now has a pleasant town centre shopping area. There is also a seafront with more restaurants and bars. The city is also home to a port and an international airport.

New Solar Farm in Cape Verde

Work has recently started on a large photovoltaic installation on the island of Sal in Cape Verde. This is part of the Cape Verdean government’s aim to supply all of the country’s energy from renewable sources. Águas de Ponta Preta (APP) is constructing this new solar farm at Ponta Preta.

The new installation will supply 2.03 GWh/year, consequently it will reduce the reliance on fossil fuels by 10%. The solar farm will comprise 3,480 panels and will cost €2.03m. Through an agreement with CERMI – The Centre for Renewable Energy and Industrial maintenance – 8 students are involved in the assembly and operational stages.

Cape Verde has almost unlimited sun therefore the use of this free resource to provide electricity is an obvious one for this country.

maio children

Children in Vila do Maio, Maio Island

Children on the island of Maio are happy and playful. They have few, if any of the elaborate toys that many European children have, but they have lovely beaches, quiet streets and lovely weather. In Maio they are particularly friendly and even though many visitors may have a language barrier, it is still possible to communicate in some limited way. These four in Vila do Maio (Porto Inglês) enjoyed being photographed.