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Sao Vicente, Cape Verde Islands

The island of São Vicente (Saint Vincent) was discovered on the 22nd of January 1462 and was left relatively uninhabited until the 19th century due to its barrenness. However, its population grew rapidly after the coaling station was setup at Mindelo in 1938. The barrenness of the island had disastrous consequences when the steam-ship era ended; A series of famines culminated in the starvation of over 20,000 people in 1947 and 1948.

The island itself covers some 227 km², measures 16km from north to south, about 24km from east to west and is one of the Barlovento (Windward) group of Islands. The main attraction is the city of Mindelo, which is considered the cultural capital of the islands.

Baia das Gatas is a lagoon located on the north-west coast, which provides sheltered waters that are safe for bathing. The village, which is largely composed of holiday homes, plays host to an annual music festival at the beginning of August.

Sao Pedro is a coastal village on the south west coast with a 1.5 km sandy beach that is starting to see some tourist development and is popular with windsurfers. The village is adjacent to the island's airport, about 10km from the centre of Mindelo.

Photo by lka "selbst erstellt"

Sao Vicente, Cape Verde Islands