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Luxury Townhouses in 2009

NEWS ALERT: Exclusive Luxury Townhouses are soon to be built with the most stunning ocean views in Sao Vicente. Spacious 3 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms with 2 En-suite and infinity pool. Be sure to complete the Property Form for more details and read more on Sao Vicente. These Townhouses are believed to double in value by 2011 when the International Airport will be open. Alternatively, you can request a property pack by calling our UK Office on 0208 517 8856.

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CAPE VERDE ISLAND

The Republic of Cape Verde (Cabo Verde) is a republic located on an archipelago in the Macaronesia ecoregion of the North Atlantic Ocean, off the western African Coast. The previously uninhabited islands were discovered and colonized by the Portuguese in the fifteenth century (though there may have been earlier discoveries). The country is named after Cap Vert (meaning Green Cape) in Senegal, the western most point of continental Africa. Also, known locally as Cabo Verde.

Cape Verde was uninhabited when the Portuguese arrived in 1460 and made the islands part of the Portuguese empire. Due to its location off the coast of Africa, Cape Verde became an important watering station, then sugar cane plantation site, and later a major hub of the trans-atlantic slave trade, that would later form the contemporary African Diaspora.

Cape Verde is an archipelago off the west coast of Africa. The geography is formed by 10 main islands and about 8 Veridian Islets. Of these, only Santa Luzia and the five islets are uninhabited. Presently it is a natural reserve. All islands are volcanic, but an active volcano only exists on one of the islands, Fogo. In recent years tourism to Cape verde has increased dramatically with lots of overseas investment coming into the islands as well.

See also:
Hen Nights

The main islands are: Barlavento (northern island group) are Santo Antão, São Vicente, Santa Luzia, São Nicolau, Sal and Boa Vista. The Barlavento islands (literally, the Windward), is the northern island group of Cape Verde archipelago. It can be divided in to two groups: Santo Antão, São Vicente, São Nicolau, Santa Luzia islands and Branco and Raso islets lie to the west and are rocky, volcanic, agricultural islands. Sal and Boa Vista lie to the east and are flat, desert islands with economies once based on salt and now turning to tourism, having more in common with Maio among the Sotavento. Minor islets include Ilhéu de Sal-Rei and Ilhéu do Baluarte (or Ilhéu do Roque) off Boa Vista, Ilhéu dos Pássaros off São Vicente and Ilhéu Rabo de Junco off Sal.

Sotavento (southern island group) are Maio, Santiago – Soa Tiago, Fogo and Brava. The Sotavento islands (literally, the Leeward), is the southern island group of Cape Verde archipelago. There are four main islands: Brava, Fogo and Santiago are rocky and volcanic agricultural islands, with the longest histories of human inhabitance and densest populations in the Cape Verdes. Maio lies to the east and is a flat desert island whose economy was primarily based on salt, giving it more in common with Sal and Boa Vista among the Barlavento. The Veridian Islets Ilhéu Grande, Ilhéu de Cima, Ilhéu Laja Branca and the minor islets Ilhéu Branco, Raso, Ilhéu de Rei, Ilhéu Sapado and Ilhéu Luís Carneiro make up the Ilhéus Secos (or Ilhéus do Rombo). The little Ilhéu de Santa Maria lays off Santiago.

Environment and Culture

The isolation of Cape Verde about 500 km (310 mi) from the African mainland has resulted in the islands having a large number of endemic species, many of which are endangered by human development. Endemic birds include Alexander's Swift (Apus alexandri), Raso Lark (Alauda razae), Cape Verde Warbler (Acrocephalus brevipennis), and Iago Sparrow (Passer iagoensis), and reptiles include the Cape Verde Giant Gecko (Tarentola gigas).

Evidently, the islands offer much to interest the traveller: spectacular mountain scenery and beautiful deserted beaches. Indeed, every island on Cape Verde seems to have its own distinct character, from the lush and lively Santiago to the sandy and salty Sal, and from the volcanic Sao Nicolau to the diving paradise of Boa Vista. There are also good markets on some of the islands, and some are livelier than others. São Vicente’s is renowned for its exuberant Carnival, whilst the Baia das Gatas Festival is a more traditional affair but one that still has people boogieing until the early hours to Cape-Verdean rhythms. These famous carnivals are held each year during August.

Many of the towns on the islands have retained their Portuguese architecture and it is worth a visit just to see these. Cape Verde's government is now trying to develop the tourist industry, and the infrastructure is being expanded to accommodate the increasing number of visitors attracted to this unusual but attractive destination. As Cape Verde comprises islands, it will come as no great surprise to learn that, in the midst of a vibrant Creole culture, are very good conditions for watersports, such as windsurfing, diving (with shipwrecks dating back to the 16th century) and sailing. However, many might argue that Cape Verde's isolation is a blessing, leaving these islands unspoiled and comparatively undiscovered.

In all the islands, however, is a fascinating mixture of African and European custom and conduct. This is best reflected in the foods on offer, with Portuguese foods (such as fish- and seafood-based dishes, olive oil, garlic, lemon and sausage) and African foods (stews, beans, maize and tropical crops) comfortably combined on most menus.

Climate

Cape Verde's climate is in the tropical zone. Average temperatures range from 24°C (75°F) in January and February to 29°C (85°F) in September. The average annual rainfall for Cape Verde is 68.4 mm (2.7 in), with September being the wettest month with 33.6 mm (1.3 in). Conversely, the months April to July record less than one millimetre of rainfall each. The climate is arid, but Cape Verde's position in the Atlantic contributes to soften the aridity, that otherwise would be the same aridity as that in continental areas.

Economy

Cape Verde being a small nation has had an increase in its economy since the late 1990s, and it is now considered a country of average development. Cape Verde has significant cooperation with Portugal at every level of the economy, leading it to link its currency first to the Portuguese escudo and, in 1999, to the euro.

Former Portuguese prime minister José Manuel Durão Barroso, now (second semester 2004) president of the European Commission, has promised to help integrate Cape Verde within the European Union sphere of influence via greater cooperation with Portugal. In March 2005, former Portuguese president Mário Soares launched a petition urging the European Union to start membership talks with Cape Verde.

Demographics

Most inhabitants of Cape Verde are a genetic blend of Sub-Saharan Africans and Europeans. Many foreigners from other parts of the world settled in Cape Verde as their permanent country. Most of them were Dutch, French, British, Arabs and Jews (from Lebanon and Morocco), Chinese (especially from Macau), Americans, and Brazilians (including people of Portuguese and African descent) settlers. All of these have been absorbed into the general Cape Verdean population.

The majority of the population adheres to Christianity, mostly Catholicism which constitutes some 90% of the population (in many areas Catholicism and the indigenous religion are syncretised). The remaining includes a sizeable Protestant community as well as a small number of Bahai and Buddhist and even smaller Muslim groups.

Other Basics

Time: Local time is GMT -1.

Electricity: Electrical current is 220 volts, 50 Hz.

Round two-pin attachment plugs and Schuko plugs are used.

Helpful Information

Cape Verde Property - See amazing bargain prices on property developments in Cape Verde