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    Sal Santa Maria

    Soaking up the sun in Sal.

    Where white sands and blue seas stretch into the horizon, Santa Maria has one of the prettiest beaches Cape Verde has to offer.

    Sal fishes

    Fishing paradise for adventurers.

    Sal offers various fishing places - especially the north of the island is known for big fish.

    Sal water sports

    Water enthusiasts are in for a treat.

    Sal has turned into a true water sports paradise. From windsurfing to snorkeling, in Sal there is no lack in water activities.

    Flights to the Island of Sal, Cape Verde

    The Island of Sal is a place not to be missed during your stay in Cape Verde. You will have an opportunity to discover the magnificent, unspoilt landscapes. If you need to relax, don’t worry... Kilometres of beaches await you, including the famous Santa Maria Beach with its 8 kilometres of white sand! And don’t forget your camera so you can take photos of the island, because there’ll be more than one landscape you will want to immortalise, such as the Pedra de Lume salt mine, and the “blue eye” of Buracona, etc.

    If you’re keen on water sports such as surfing, kitesurfing, or windsurfing, allow for a few extra days on the island. Sal is famous for its sea breezes, so it’s an ideal place to practise these sports. And if you don’t like water sports, just enjoy paddling in the waves.

    In short, with its range of quality hotels you are guaranteed an enjoyable stay on the Island of Sal. So don’t wait a moment longer, and book your Brussels Airlines flight to the Island of Sal!

    What to do on the Island of Sal, Cape Verde?

    1. Santa Maria Beach. A typical picture-postcard beach. You’ll find white sand and transparent water that’s perfect for bathing. You can also watch the fishermen fishing from the pier. Cape Verde’s Santa Maria beach is considered one of the most beautiful in the world!
    2. Pedra de Lume. This salt mine is another ideal place to relax. In return for a small admission charge, you can visit this atypical location famous for its lunar landscapes. What’s more, you can have a salt water and mud massage which will leave you with the softest skin ever. Some people even think it has a rejuvenating effect!
    3. Buracona – Olho Azul. This natural pool is quite simply bewitching. If the sun is shining while you’re there, you may be lucky enough to catch a glimpse of the famous blue eye. This is also the occasion to bathe in turquoise water and take advantage of the nearby restaurant to sample the local cuisine and enjoy a magnificent view.
    4. Viveiro botanical garden. This small nest of greenery is a good way to vary your visit. For an hour-and-a-half, you’ll be able to admire unfamiliar plants and animals. You can keep an eye on your children and let them play with the animals whilst you sit at the café and take advantage of this peaceful nook.
    5. Paroquia de Nossa Senhora das Dores. This small Christian church in Santa Maria represents the local culture nicely, and is brought to life by devout Christians who love to sing and dance. If you get the chance, go to one of the masses to enjoy the atmosphere that is both religious and festive at the same time.
    6. Ponta Preta Beach. Quite simply, this is another unmissable beach on which to stroll or relax... Your choice. Unlike Santa Maria beach, this is less busy, and the sand is black. You can watch the colourful kitesurfers’ sails or have a go at underwater diving and watch the fish. And if you feel a little peckish at any point, don’t worry, there are restaurants offering delicious dishes all along the beach.
    7. Horse Riding on Santa Maria Beach. This ride will be etched in your memory forever. Accompanied by a guide, the 2-hour excursion will give you the chance to switch off and rediscover the magnificent landscape, this time on horseback.
    8. Underwater diving. What’s better than underwater diving to cool you down and allow you to discover a new environment? There are several places on Sal where you can do this. Everyone is welcome, and even the most sceptical will be won over.

    Practical information for your trip to the Island of Sal

    • Brussels Airlines flights arrive and depart from Amilcar Cabral International Airport, which is only 2 km from Espargos, the largest town on the island, and 4 km from Palmeira.
      Please note that following a decision by the authorities of Cabo Verde, passengers will have to pay an airport tax upon arrival in Cape Verde. More info here.
    • Current local time in Sal:  
    • Currency: The currency in Cape Verde is the Cape Verdean escudo. This currency cannot be taken out of the country, so it isn’t possible to buy it outside Cape Verde. However, you can pay in dollars or euros for most things. You can pay by Visa, but only in large towns. Given that the cost of living is expensive there, it’s better to pay cash.
    • Telephone calls and Wi-Fi: The dialing code for Cape Verde is +238. Wi-Fi is only available in the island’s hotels and restaurants.
    • Electric sockets: These have a standard voltage of 230 V and are type C or F (European standard). If you use American or British plugs, you will need an adaptor.
    • Travel information: You will need a visa to enter Cape Verde. You have two options: you can either buy your visa at Cabral airport (but that can take some time given the significant number of tourists), or you can order it by post before your arrival (48 hours). You will need to present an identity photo with your passport, which must be valid for a minimum of 6 months from the time of the visa request. The cost for a visa issued at the airport is 25 euros, but if you choose the postal option, prices vary depending on the country in which you’re located. You will also need a copy of your hotel reservation and your return plane ticket. For all information on visas and travel documents, visit the website
    • Vaccination: You should be vaccinated against yellow fever; no other vaccinations are mandatory. For more health information, visit the website

    What to do and not to do on the Island of Sal?

    • You are strongly advised to book your excursions directly with the locals in order to discover the country, but you should be vigilant with regard to the final price! In short, some people can entice you with a (very) cheap price, but don’t forget to ask what is or is not included (petrol, vehicle, driver, etc.).
    • Don’t be afraid to cross the town’s initial “tourist barrier”. If you make the effort to meet the locals, you’ll find that the Cape Verdeans are very hospitable! Take note, the local authorities don’t like tourists walking about town without a shirt or suitable covering, or in swimming costumes, so remember to have a t-shirt and shorts/trousers with you to wear when out walking.
    • Fishing in Cape Verde is greatly prized, particularly on the Island of Sal, where you can find various places to practise this sport or hobby.
    • The main language in Cape Verde is Creole, although Portuguese is the country’s official language. In principle, English is spoken by all tour operators, and some also speak French.

    A little “crioulo” survival vocabulary

    • Good morning: Bom dia
    • Good evening: Bo noti
    • Goodbye: Ti dispos
    • Thank you: Abrigadu
    • Please: Favor
    • I don’t understand: M-ka sta ntendi
    • Can you help me?: Bú pôdi djudâ-m'?
    • Open: Abértu
    • Closed: Fitchadu

    Cultural events in Sal

    The music of Cape Verde is very inviting, and the Cape Verdeans take advantage of festivals and holidays to share their culture and wear highly colourful clothes! This is their opportunity to sing, dance, and exchange gifts that have been specially prepared for the occasion.

    • The Santa Maria Festival (August): This is one of Cape Verde’s three most important festivals. People meet up on Santa Marta beach to party and enjoy the local music, including Cape Verdean zouk.
    • The Sal International Music Festival (September): Over the course of a weekend you will have a chance to switch off thanks to the spellbinding music of this festival. Each year, fabulous local and international artists appear to share their expertise.

    When to go to the Island of Sal?

    The Island of Sal has a dry, tropical climate. Temperatures are pleasant throughout the year, ranging from 25 to 30 degrees on average. January, October and September are the months with the highest rainfall.

    So wear light clothes and don’t forget some sun cream! On the other hand, do take a sweater or something for the evening as it cools down pretty quickly.

    What to eat on the Island of Sal?

    As for gastronomy, you shouldn’t miss the famous “Cachupastew, made from maize, sausages, cabbage, and beans. You can also sample fresh fish on the beach, given that fishing is one of the island’s main activities.

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    Book your flight to the Island of Sal, Cape Verde!

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