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sal beach

Cape Verde Beaches

Map of the best Cape Verde Beaches

Sal, Boa Vista and Maio have magnificent sandy beaches stretching for kilometres and largely or totally empty. Other islands have either black laval or shingle beaches or simply rocky shores.

R&V from Scotland appreciated Santa Maria.
"The beaches are lovely though children should not be left unattended near the surf which could be very strong. There is also a danger spot at the Belorizonte area of beach, it looks like part of an old pier strut which sticks up out of the sand at the surf line. This could badly injure someone diving/frolicking around that area. There is a sign which points out the danger but it could be missed by the unsuspecting bather.
I had many a laugh just watching folks get unexpectedly drenched with large waves. Strangely, it always seemed to happen to groups of elderly French backpackers who to their credit took it as much of a laugh as we did. The water was clean and the temperature was comfortable. There is always a breeze which in our opinion made sun lounging very agreeable. There were very few mosquitoes, though inevitably I got a couple of bites which I always react to, thank goodness for Anti-histamine. There is evidence of rubbish on the beach beginning to show and I think the hotels/local authority need to tackle that before it becomes a big problem. Daily grille tractoring would resolve most of it.
Beware the beach/promenade hawkers who mostly seem to be from Senegal. They could be a nuisance but they stopped bothering after a firm No thank you! Never accept a ‘gift’ from them – sprat to catch the whale etc. The town of Santa Maria was unattractive with little to interest the tourist (shops, historic buildings). At first sight in the evening it looked a bit threatening in some quarters but after a while there was no feeling of fear. The Cabo Verdeans are delightful people and even the immigrant mainland Africans are quite charming too, though I did detect some resentment from the native islanders towards the Africans. We were glad that we visited Cabo Verde before the mass development which is about to ensue. I guess that in 5yrs time Sal will have a better infrastructure but that will be at the expense of its natural charm.
To have a destination in under 6hrs flying time which has such lovely weather and warm seas is a tremendous draw. That was why we decided spend our holiday there. We were not disappointed and would recommend it particularly as a chill out holiday, though for the energetic there is kite surfing and of course the erotic Funana dancing."

Contaminated beaches at Praia, Santiago

The beaches of Gamboa, Quebra Canela, Prainha, Praia Negra and Etar in Palmarejo have all been declared unfit for bathing by the Praia Health Department delegation. According to Health Department delegate José da Rosa,
"The beaches are unsafe for human use at the moment. The Praia Health Department delegation believes that the recent increase in the number of cases of diarrhea and skin diseases could be related to the levels of contamination on Praia’s beaches."
According to Dr. da Rosa,
"in addition to runoff from sewers, the locales are commonly used as “public restrooms” by certain individuals.
He confirms that
"the beaches in question “are contaminated with fecal coliforms, and this is considered a danger to public health.” Those deciding to bathe at the beaches named are running the risk of contamination,"
suggests Dr. da Rosa, who has asked beachgoers to wait until the results of quality control analyses carried out on water samples are positive.