Seniors Head for the Green Cape

Cape Verde, officially the Republic of Cape Verde is an island country, spanning an archipelago of 10 islands located in the central Atantic Ocean, 570 kilometers off the coast of Western Africa. This senior finds it interesting that there are so many people living clear out there in the Atlantic Ocean.Of course I guess one could say the same thing about the Hawaiian Islands.

The country has an estimated population (most of them creole) of about 500,000, with its capital city of Praia accounting for a quarter of its citizens. Nearly 38% of the population lives in rural areas according to the 2010 Cape Verdean census.

The uninhabited islands of the Cape Verde archipelago were discovered by Italian and Portuguese navigators way back around 1456. The islands of Cape Verde have a pleasant climate during most of the year with 350 days of sunshine, and some of them offer impressive mountain scenery as well.

The United States and Cape Verde have strong historical roots. As early as the 1740s, U.S. whaling ships began recruiting crews from the islands of Brava and Fogo, and other ships from the American colonies routinely anchored in Cape Verdean ports to trade. Some 4,000 American citizens now reside in the country. Must be something there for senior citizens to check out.

Cape Verde is sometimes referred to as the Undiscovered Islands. Mt. Fogo is Cape Verde’s highest peak (2829m/9382ft), the conical, cinder-clad Mt Fogo, rises dramatically out of the floor of an ancient crater known as Chã das Caldeiras. A scenic, cobbled road, punctuated by hamlets with lava block houses, encircles the island. Seniors, it’s still an active volcano but the last eruption was in 1995.

Seniors, Let’s Head For Mindelo

Set around a moon-shaped port and ringed by barren mountains, Mindelo is Cape Verde’s answer to the Riviera, complete with cobblestone streets, candy-colored colonial buildings and yachts bobbing in a peaceful harbor. Mindelo produces more than its fair share of the islands’ poets, musicians and stylish bars.

The islands are full of contrasts; flat, barren and parched islands like Sal in the east to mountainous, cloud capped islands such as Santo Antao in the west. Black sand beaches, bleached-white beaches, high cliffs, mountainous peaks and desert plains interrupted by volcanic cones.

Seniors, there is plenty to see and do: diving, hill walking, fishing, windsurfing or just relaxing on the beach with a Mai Tai or a Cuba Libre.  Since tourism is a relatively recent arrival, senior visitors can still sample the real culture of the islands from the more European (Sao Vicente) to the more African (Santiago).

Enjoy your every moment on Cape Verde. jeb



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