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Pictures of our trip 2013/14 to Cape Verde
- Santiago/Praia part 1 from 11/18 until 12/13/2013 and part 2 from 12/26/2013 until 2/28/2014
Ukraine – August 17 to 21, 2013 - Ilyichevsk Port - Odessa - Bilhorod Dnistrovsky - Moldova Border
Moldova – August 21 to 22, 2013 - Ukraine Border - Causeni - Transnistria Border
Transnistria August 22 to September 1, 2013 - Tiraspol - Chitcani - Bendery - Moldova Border
Georgia Part 3 – August 13 to 15, 2013 - Abkhazia Border - Poti - Ferry to Ilyichevsk/Ukraine
Cape Verde: Fogo – December 13th to 23rd, 2013
Cape Verde: Brava – December 23rd to 26th, 2013
Cape Verde: São Nicolau – February 28th to March 13th, 2014
Cape Verde: São Vicente/Mindelo part 1 – March 13th to 20th, 2014
Cape Verde: Santo Antão/Eastern side part 1 – March 20th to April 7th, 2014
Cape Verde: Santo Antão/Western side part 2April 7th to 10th, 2014
Cape Verde: São Vicente/Mindelo part 2April 10th to 29th, 2014
Cape Verde Map
       Santiago Map       Northwest Africa Map
latest picture: February 21, 2014
  • click a picture to see details

001  November 12th, 2013: Our
MSC-container that arrived from the
Ukraine on 10/26/2013 is finally allowed
to be unloaded in the Port of Praia, the
capital of the Cape Verde archipelago.....
002  ..... nothing beats the feeling to
see our LandCruiser after 53 days
including 3 transshipments “safe and
sound” in front of us and to
be reunited again
003  November 21st, 2013 - 5.30pm:
Emil drives our car after 25 days of
“enforced stay” out of the harbor area
of Praia. The help of the Ministry
of Tourism and our patience
were the key to success!
We squeeze our heads closer against the small airplane window and gaze to the lights that sparkle below us in the Atlantic Ocean. They belong to Praia, the capital of Santiago, the biggest of the ten islands of the archipelago of Cape Verde comprising 1’557 sq. mi., 360 miles off the coast of Senegal. A bit of an ungentle landing of Air Maroc catapults us onto African soil, the starting point of our second African adventure. It is 10.50pm of October 8th, 2013.
004  The blue of the flag of Cape
Verde competes with the blue of the
sky and the ocean. Cape Verde
consists of 10 islands
005  The African character is evident,
even if the people in general are not as
dark as on the continent: A little girl in
Praia with decorative beads in her hair
006  The setting sun puts the skies
ablaze. View from the Johannes Paul II
Square in “Achada Santo António“
in Praia
At one of the immigration counters with only one lady officer attending there is a long queue. It is the one for “Visa on arrival”. The other booths are long-since empty, but our lady “Sra. Ana Paula Gomes Antunes de Pina” doesn’t get any reinforcement. Her name is even mentioned on the visa that is issued for US$ 35 per person. We need local money for the taxi. The ATM at the airport doesn’t accept the Maestro card and Visa has a limit of 20'000 CVE (Cape Verde Escudos), that’s about US$ 240. This was the case always everywhere during our whole stay.
007  View from the elevated Plateau,
the historic quarter, to the sprawling
district below of “Bairro Craveiro Lopes”
and towards the “Sucupira Market”
008  The disused lighthouse of Praia
at “Punta Temerosa” is now just a
reminder of the nostalgic past
009  The beach of “Quebra Canela”
gets busy with families on weekends
It is 1.30am on October 9th, when we finally carry our voluminous luggage into the sticky hot room of the prebooked guesthouse “O Jardim do Vinho” in the “Achada Santo Antonio” region of Praia. The aircon doesn’t work, only a “mini” fan is turning slowly, but not giving any relief. We hastily open the window and get the second shock. All we see is a tall naked wall that shields any outside view. The night air that now enters through the window doesn’t make us feel better either; it brings in just some mosquitos. Bathed in our own sweat we pull an all-nighter until daybreak.
010  Looking for household articles?
You will find them at the popular
“Sucupira Market”
011  At weekends popcorn and cotton
candy is sold at the Pope John Paul II
Square in Praia. Having a playground, the
recreational park is popular with families
012  Each day the same women show
up at the same spot to sell bananas,
papayas, lemons, avocados and fish.
Liliana is a loyal avocado customer
At 6.30am we get up. At 7am it knocks on the door. The owner's lady complains that we would talk too loudly. But it is not yet the trigger that makes us look for another place. When Emil later sits at the laptop and benefits of the offered ‘free’ wireless, the lady nags that it is only meant for checking emails, not for surfing, because internet on Cape Verde is expensive. This is the final straw. We check out. After all we pay US$ 55 for a night with shared bathroom.
013  The Pro-Cathedral ”Igreja Nossa
Senhora da Graça“ on the "Platô“
(= Plateau) – the historical center of
Praia – has a typical island character
014  Inspiring mural with Amilcar Cabral,
the fighter for independence for Guinea-
Bissau and Cape Verde from Portugal, with a
"love declaration" for Cape Verde in the side
street “Rua Tenente Valadim” on the Plateau
015  One of the oldest buildings in
Praia – the “Jaime Mota Barracks”
(Quartel Jaime Mota), dating
from 1826 on the Plateau –
shot in the warm evening light
One day later we are happy again. For only 0.75 US$ more we sit at the large front window of an air-conditioned room on the 1st floor with an own bathroom and fridge and a nice breakfast buffet at the Hotel America in the city center and watch the street life. Supermarket and fruit store are just beside. And the colorfully dressed African mamas, who each morning appear at the same corner balancing bananas, pawpaw, lemons, avocados and fish on their heads are tuning us for Africa. At 6pm this part of the city gets quiet. Then only the many street dogs are roaming around, barking, defending their territory and not leaving a single garbage bag in place.
016  View from the Plateau down to the
Trindade River (Ribeira de Trindade), the
Black Beach (Praia Negra), the urban quarter
of Achada Grande and the Port of Praia
017  Fishing nets are pulled back in
the Port of Praia. The catch
seems to be meager
018  Gamboa Beach (Praia Gamboa)
opposite of the port and the islet of
Santa Maria (Ilhéu Santa Maria)
Our shipping agency Portmar is situated on the 130 ft. high plateau, the historic quarter of the capital. The narrow cobble stone alleys, the colorfully painted houses and the whitewashed church – everything bears the imprint of a peaceful island. At Portmar, we want to get some information about the customs clearance procedure for our LandCruiser. “The worst case scenario would be to have to make an insurance for about US$ 400, which would cover a required guarantee” is the guess of João, the boss. This conversation takes place on October 11th. But in the end everything goes a different way. A bond of US$ 12'500 has to be placed for our 31 years old vehicle, which luckily the Ministry of Tourism takes over thanks to our Guinness Worldrecord title, having in mind a promotional campaign. Thus, we don’t see anymore a problem. Not a bit of it! …..
People of Cape Verde are children lovers. According to a study they figure among the ‘TOP-5’ child-friendliest African states
019  Boys are playing with old tires
– where can and want they to do
this in Western countries?
020  A girl sits on a seesaw
at the playground
021  Sweet children's faces. What
are they probably wondering about?
On Saturday, October 24th, the freighter of Portline, a feeder line of MSC, is arriving on schedule from the Canary Islands and docks at the Port of Praia. Monday, 10/26/2013, the containers are discharged. But from Francisco, the broker recommended by Portmar, we don’t hear anything until the following Sunday evening. Then, we get his following email: “Last week I was busy unloading other containers. Tomorrow I will take care of your problem”. We are speechless! To cut a long story short: Only on November 12th, we are allowed to open our container. It is 3pm. Nothing can beat the feeling to see our LandCruiser “safe and sound” in front of us and to be reunited again. But our joy is only short living. If we thought that after customs inspection we were allowed to leave the port, we are completely wrong, because the customs papers and registration haven’t been orgenized at all.
022  Monument of the visit of Pope
John Paul II to Cape Verde from 1/25
to 1/27/1990, inaugurated on
May 19th, 2007. The square is named
after him: “Praça Papa João Paulo II“,
and is popular for watching the sunset
023  A watchman is heating water
for a cup of tea. The security business
is booming in Praia – anything and
everything is guarded
024  A group of young people are
posing happily for a picture. They
are returning home after spending
a Sunday at Praia`s
“Quebra Canela Beach”
That means our LandCruiser has to remain in the port and, as it is otherwise the rule for empty cars, we have to surrender the keys to the port authority and have no access to our personal belongings (sounds familiar to Saint Lucia in the Caribbean!). We fight tooth and nail to avoid it, but to no avail. “Your ‘house’ is now the ‘house’ of the port” an unfriendly guy declares in an aggressive tone. He is supposed to be one of the bosses. Emil is freaking out totally. He threatens to reload the LandCruiser immediately into the container and to divert it to a friendlier country. I feel it: He is bloody serious. Only at the last moment I can convince him to obey and to hand over the keys to the boss of the port, making him at the same time responsible should we miss just one small item. (We heard later that this involved a watchman guarding always the car!) On this evening Emil needs quite a number of Strela beers to dampen his frustration and anger just a little.
025  Always looking for food: A white
Little Egret (Egretta garzetta) with
its yellow feet at the coast near
Praia`s shopping mall
026  Always different: Another sunset
at Pope John Paul II square in Praia
027  Emil is enjoying the ocean view
on our morning walk along the coast
(Praia de Coragi) west of the
Praia Shopping Mall
The release procedure continues for further nine nerve-wracking days. Yet on November 21st, 2013, at 5.30pm, the wonder still happens: After 25 days we are able to drive our LandCruiser out of the port – without further inspections (no wonder, they had the key long enough to scrutinize it thoroughly!). It now carries a shiny red local license plate with the number SP 96-PJ. The support of the Ministry of Tourism and our patience were finally the key to success. We remember that in Madagascar we vowed “to exercise never again so much patience” when the release took nine days. And yet – we did it again! Other than five frayed out and leaking cans of Ukrainian beer in our Engel fridge, our “household” has survived unharmed the 53 days lasting sea journey from the Ukraine, including three transshipments onto other vessels in Italy, Portugal and Gran Canaria. However the still intact cans are standing in a smelly beer sludge. “What a pity for the beer” Emil moans – “What a mess” I complain when cleaning up!
028  Yellow grass and thorny acacia
dominate the landscape west of Praia
towards the municipality of Ribeira
Grande de Santiago. On a mound sits
the church of São Martinho Grande
029  9 miles from Praia, on the plateau
of the "Fortaleza Real de São Filipe", we
admire the coastline and village of Cidade
Velha (= Old City). In 2009 it received
UNESCO World Heritage status as the
first European settlement in the tropics
030  The well restored "Fortaleza
Real de São Filipe" overlooks the
Atlantic Ocean. It was built in the
16th century and watches
over Cidade Velha
With 383 sq. mi., the island of Santiago is the biggest of the Cape Verde Archipelago. It is also the most “African” with the most dark-skinned people – many from its former ally Guinea-Bissau. Blessed with less outstanding features than its neighbour islands, it attracts fewer tourists. It is situated at the same latitude as the Caribbean Islands (exactly as Martinique/Dominica) with the sun shining every day. We are eager to leave Praia, we finally want to go on a journey of discovery. But first we need to wait for the concept of the promotion campaign, announced by the Ministry of Tourism. At least we think so and feel obliged to do so due to their support. After stopping by several times during the following two weeks and being put off from day to day – either because the boss is out of the country or the concept is not yet finalized – we have reached the limit of our patience. Are they really serious about it? Slowly we doubt it. We give them notice and finally do what we have come to Cape Verde for: To visit the islands.
031  View from "Fortaleza Real de
São Filipe" over Cidade Velha – the
historic heart and former capital of
Cape Verde. The ruins of the huge
"Sé Cathedral" are clearly visible
032  The cistern of the "Fortaleza Real
de São Filipe – today not anymore the
original – has always had a central location
at the " Praça de Armas". The circular
form was taken over from the construction
style of castles at the Iberian Peninsula
033  Inland of Cidade Velha a small
green fertile ribbon meanders through
the Ribeira Grande Canyon. Thanks
to irrigation it remains green all year
over. (View from the fortress
“Real de São Filipe")
Past a dry landscape with high yellow grass and thorny acacia trees we drive to Cidade Velha, the historic heart and former capital of Cape Verde, situated nine miles west of Praia. It received UNESCO World Heritage status in 2009 as the “first European settlement in the tropics”, and Christopher Columbus stopped here in 1498 during his 3rd voyage to the Americas. Our first and best view over the old capital is from the plateau of the well restored “Fortaleza Real de São Filipe”, built in the 16th century, which watches over the historic town at the Atlantic coast. Its neat houses in the old colonial style, its cobble stone streets, its little bay with the colorful fishing boats and the couple of high palm trees paint the picture of an island idyll.
034  The main square of Cidade Velha
spreads a sense of peaceful island life
today. However, the column in the middle
of the square was the pillory – erected
1520 – where the slaves on their way
from West Africa (Guinea Bissau/
Sierra Leone) to the Americas (Brazil/
Caribbean) have been chained up
035  The old colonial style of the houses,
its warm blue facades and the high palm
trees are part of the charm of Cidade
Velha. How might Christopher Columbus
have felt 1498 when he stopped here
during his 3rd voyage to the Americas? –
or one year before Vasco da Gama
when sailing to India?
036  Colorful fishing boats are lined up
at the bay of Cidade Velha. The territorial
water of Cape Verde is rich on fish
resources and measures over 232`000
sq mi. EU countries like Portugal, Spain
and France are currently also allowed
to fish in Cape Verde waters
But it was not always like it seems. The “Pelourinho”, the pillory in the middle of the main square, erected in 1520, gives evidence. It served to chain up and display slaves on their way from West Africa to the Americas. Due to the convenient location between Africa, Europe and America the place became the hub for the slave trade. On our stroll through the ruins and the narrow alleys we discover, however, also a nostalgic remnant from the Portuguese area: A rusted “Sagres” beer sign hanging above the door of a former bar.
037  Young and beautiful: A banana
vendor under the big tree of the village
square of Cidade Velha – her cell
phone always “ready”
038  Cobbles belong to the picture of
historic Cidade Velha (but is seen also at
many other places in Cape Verde, though
they are more and more tarred over) .....
039  ..... on our stroll we discover a
nostalgic beer sign from the Portuguese
area – here must have been a bar during
colonial time (before July 5th, 1975),
which sold the Portuguese beer
“Sagres” from Lisbon
Then we leave behind the cradle of the Cape Verdean roots, and are immediately surrounded again by the dry landscape recalling the Sahel Zone of West Africa. After two miles the coastal road continues inland. We turn and drive back to Praia. Next day, in a blitz we book the ferry to the western neighboring island of Fogo – 35 miles beeline or about twice so much for the ferry. We postpone the North of Santiago to after our return. Then we will have plenty of time for it until a transport possibility to the northern islands arises.
040  About 2 miles west of Cidade Velha
we are again back in the nature. The hill to
the left is the 1’510 high Monte Graciosa,
an ancient volcano. The dryness recalls
the Sahel Zone of West Africa
041  Our LandCruiser is climbing back
from the little black sandy beach west of
Cidade Velha. The water temperatures is
between 72 and 77°F throughout the year
042  Liliana is enjoying a Strela Beer at
the newly opened "Rincón de Juan" at the
Hotel America in Praia waiting for her
"Cachupa" meal to be served (a local
dish of pea and corn with fish or ham)
We visited from December 13th to 23rd, 2013, the island of Fogo and from December 23rd to 26th,
the island of Brava, before we explored the East, North, West and the Interior of the island of Santiago
043  Friday, the 13th: Departure from
Praia on the island of Santiago with the
FastFerry "Kriola" to the neighbor island
of Fogo. The 4-hour passage is famous
for being very choppy what it also is.
Liliana can only "survive" with pills
against sea sickness
044  We are lucky. The height of the hull
of the FastFerry is limited to 7'5". After
we lay down our “showering” jerry cans
and take our "washing machine" jerry
can down to the front seat, it just fits
045  The interior of "Kriola" is very clean
and comfortable. There are two hostesses
who distribute vomiting bags and clean
off continuously the mess. The majority of
the maximal 164 passengers get seasick
“Down at the beach there is a similar equipped car as yours“ João from the reception of our hotel informs us one day. Becoming curious and always ready to meet same-minded people, we head straight down to the beach. We don’t have to search for long. The crowd of people indicates the place. It must be something really special, we think. Yes, it indeed is! This is how we get to know Mait Nilson from Estonia with his Amphibear Mobile (a LandCruiser floating on two pontoons). He needs to do some welding and is waiting for the low tide.
046  "Praia de São Francisco" – a
‘white’ sandy beach – stretches along a
lovely bay about 12 miles northeast of
the capital Praia, which has a
population of about 125’000 .....
047  ..... during the week we are almost
alone. We resist to camp there for the
night. Beaches have never belonged to
the spots where we would pitch up a
wild camp (when we are alone)
048  In Praia we meet Mait from
Estonia with his Amphibear Mobile (a
LandCruiser floating on two pontoons).
He needs to do some welding and is
waiting for the low tide. He arrived by
sea from Dakar/Senegal and wants to
continue to Brazil (20 days). But shortly
after Cape Verde he had to be rescued
in the Atlantic. According to his blog he
abandoned now his ambitious project
He tells us that he arrived “sailing” about 420 miles (365 nautical miles) from Dakar/Senegal and intends to continue to Brazil, exactly the island of Fernando de Noronha, counting 20 days for the crossing of about 1’430 miles (1’240 n.m.). Knowing the caprices of the Atlantic from our journeys with the FastFerry to Fogo and Brava, we are concerned, the more that he is solo on his own. We just hope that everything is going well. Later, however, we read in his blog that shortly after leaving Cape Verde in southwesterly direction he had to be rescued after about 110 miles (96 n.m.). Apparently the damage on the pontoons was so big that he had to abandon his ambitious project.
049  Emil whips out the camera. The
first peaks in the interior are luring in the
distance. “Pico Antónia“ (left side, 4'574 ft.)
is the highest and also coldest spot on the
island, dropping to 48°F
050  The village church of São Domingos
in the mountainous interior. Religion plays
an important role on Cape Verde. About
80-85% of the population belongs
to the Roman Catholic Church
051  The jagged silhouette of the impres-
sing mountain range with the 4'574 ft. high
“Pico Antónia”, the highest mountain on the
island of Santiago, which has a population
of about 240’000 and measures 627 sq.mi.
Tarrafal with its white sandy beach in the hotter Northwest is our goal on New Year’s Day 2014. We chose the longer road via the east coast. There is very little traffic and few people are on the streets. Some wave us with a bright smile, others shout for “money“. It gets greener. The first small palm coves and cultivations of vegetable, maize and sugar cane appear as we roll from Cancelo for many miles on the bumpy cobble stone street north.
Assomada's Saturday market, the second largest town on the island of Santiago, is especially lively and colorful.
The vendors with their colored head scarves add to the brightness. Typical regional produce is displayed
052  Salad, herbs, vegetable –
everything fresh from the garden
053  Sugar cane that is also
offered peeled in small pieces
054  Lemon, coconut, pawpaw
besides all kind of vegetables
We pass some small villages that all look deserted on this New Year’s morning. It is lunch time when we arrive at the white sandy picture book beach of Tarrafal with its turquoise sea and swaying palm trees. It is also deserted. Even the colourful fishing boats that give the semi-circular bay its special charm are resting today. In the village the shops are also closed.
055  There are also hot sausages
fresh from the pot
056  There is always time for a
break and a little chat
057  No market lady without a balance:
Here she weighs cassava roots
But the museum of the former concentration camp “Campo de Concentração do Tarrafal“, 1½ miles south of Tarrafal, has its door open. It was built by the Portuguese in 1936 and closed in 1954. Children besiege the entrance and shout for “money”. For many years the fascist regime of Salazar tortured and murdered here resistance fighters and critics. In the tiny museum there are pictures and documents of the atrocities. The labelling, however, is only in Portuguese.
058  From onions to tooth paste, from
toilet paper to margarine, from oil to fruit
juice – at the market in Assomada
almost everything is available
059  There is nothing that cannot be
transported on the head! Outside
the market of Assomada
060  The joy to play is visible on the
faces of these girls. The colorful beads
in the hair give them the special cute look
On our way back, we decide to follow the western coastal road winding for around 3 miles through a lovely mountain scenery with stunning coastal views. At the deserted black sandy beach of “Ribeira da Prata“, engulfed by a green vegetation belt, is the tiny camping “Chez Louis“. When the sign appears it is a bit of a disappointment to see that there is only a foot path, no possibility for vehicle travelers.
061  Judith and Philipp from Switzerland
wave good-bye. We first met on the island
of Fogo and it was lovely to see them again
in Assomada and share some stories
062  Assomada is situated in the center
of the island. With more than 12’000 people
it is Santiago's second largest city, lies on
an altitude of 1’106 ft. and is known for
its colorful market days
063  "Look at this funny car
and the funny people"
Emil parks along the roadside and I walk to the beach hoping to find any car access. But to no avail. So we stop only briefly and then move on. Shortly after we come across the newly built road to Assomada, the second largest city of the island in its middle. It runs inland – there is no western through road along the coast, only cul-de-sac. The haziness does not allow us any views. But that does not really bother us because we still have plenty of time ahead to explore the region again. Therefore we head straight back to the capital Praia.
064  The jagged mountain range is the
most apparent feature of the island center
and pops up from different spots. Left
the 2’477 ft. high “Monte João Teves“,
right the 2'444 ft. high “Mato Ferreira“
065  Modest dwellings are nestling on
a steep mountain slope. The mountain region
has the most share of the little rain falling on
the island. It looks green, flowery and
produce is growing
066  Is a storm gathering – a
mystical mood that we like very much
Since we returned from the two southern neighbour islands of Fogo and Brava, we have to take care about two things: A shipping connection from the main island of Santiago to the northern island of São Nicolau and another from São Nicolau to its neighbouring island of São Vicente. It is a difficult task. Currently there is just one possibility: The freighter “Pentalina“ that now and then calls at these islands, but only very irregularly and unreliably. Thus it could well happen that we get stuck on São Nicolau for weeks. Apart of that it is shockingly expensive: CVE 58‘000 = US$ 775 (!) for our LandCruiser plus CVE 3‘800 per person. Is there no other possibility?
067  The 6 miles long mountain road from
São Domingos to the antenna close to
“Monte Tchôta“ is twisting up through the
hills and reveals a beautiful scenery to
mountain peaks and the valley below
068  “Pico d'Antónia” with its height of
4'574 ft. is the highest peak of the island
of Santiago – seen from the antennas at
3'550 ft. near “Monte Tchôta“
069  Panorama of the “antenna farm”
at 3'550 ft. near “Monte Tchôta“
to the East, i.e. “São Domingos"
Luck has it that we get the name of the big boss of “CV Fast Ferry” that regularly plies between the southern islands of Santiago, Fogo and Brava. As Mr. Paiva tells us, he will start to run his only ferry “Kriola“ (a second one named “Liberdadi” is ordered and on its way from Singapore) fortnightly from Santiago to São Nicolau and during carnival time beginning of March he will also make a special trip from São Nicolau to São Vicente. Hope is rising again!
070  The rising mountain peaks in the
interior towering into the blue sky (here
the 2’339 ft. high “Pedra Branca” south
of “São Domingos") look impressing .....
071  ..... so does the “antenna farm”
at “Monte Tchôta“ .....
072  ..... and the sisal agaves along
the mountain road to the antenna
Mr. Paiva is ready to grant us 50% discount if we agree to carry around the logo of Fast Ferry on our LandCruiser. Of course we do! But there is still a snag to it: In Mindelo on São Vicente Fast Ferry cannot unload our LandCruiser due to the lack of a suitable ramp (it still has to be built). But Mr. Paiva is able to convince Mindelo’s port boss to arrange a crane. It sounds good. Hence we don’t object to add the logo of the harbor – Enapor – to the one of the Fast Ferry.
073  That’s Africa all over: Gathering
wood and transport it home seems to be
still the women's work. This group crosses
us on the mountain road to the antenna
074  We descend the narrow twisting
cobble stone road from the antenna to
“São Domingos". Almost all side roads
are cobbled streets. The vegetation
around us presents itself lush green
075  No pollution, no traffic noise: A
little hamlet on a green plateau with a
lovely panorama on our way to the
“Serra Malagueta” on an altitude of
about 3’000 ft. The mountain in the
background is again the 4’574 ft.
high “Pico d'Antónia”
The next two planned fortnightly trips to São Nicolau are cancelled due to a heavy sea. Slowly I am going stir-crazy. Therefore, on a Saturday we once more get on our way north, to the centre of the island. In Assomada, a city of 12‘000 people on an altitude of 1’100 ft. is market day. We start early. Jagged mountain peaks appear soon, modest houses nestle on steep mountain slopes, and it gets green and fertile. Most of the scarce rain on the island is mainly falling in the mountain region. For the 25 miles trip we need fully two hours because we are enjoying the scenery and stopping for pictures.
076  “Serra Malagueta” is proclaimed a
nature reserve. Prior to the building of a
road in the 1980s through the rugged
mountain range, the more than 3’300 ft.
high peaks cut off the North from the
southern part of the island
077  The canyon-like landscape of the
“Serra Malagueta” offers some hiking trails
of different degrees of difficulty. People are
living even in the stony narrow valleys
078  Quite an impressing sight: The
good tarmac road meandering from the
“Serra Malagueta” through a scenic land-
scape southward. On the right side of
the picture the village of Fundura
besides the 2’280 ft. tall “Monte Jagau”
The lively market in Assomada offers also enough photo motifs. The lady vendors wearing different head scarves contribute much to the colorful scene. Seldom have we seen such a huge display of regional produce. At one corner there are fresh vegetables, salad, sweet potatoes, cassava-, manioc- and yam roots as well a whole range of herbs. At another area mango, pawpaw, banana, lemon and coconut is piled up. Besides sugar cane is peeled and cut into small pieces. Coincidentally we run into Judith and Philip from Switzerland again. We earlier met them on the island of Fogo. Now they are on their final days of their five weeks holiday. We enjoy talking to them while sipping cold beer. They also are well traveled people.
079  This is the view from “Serra
Malagueta” to Tarrafal in the Northwest
of the island with its 7’500 people
080  Coconut vendors walk determined
past the colored fishing boats that give
the bay of Tarrafal its unique appearance
081  The white sandy beach protected
from the wind in Tarrafal attracts locals
and foreign tourists alike
Our third and last trip to the north is dedicated to the “Serra da Malagueta” – a canyon-like dramatic landscape and nature reserve with more than 3’300 ft. high peaks and trails of different difficulty degrees. However, access to the park is only for pedestrians. Where do we park our LandCruiser? To leave it for a longer period unwatched along the road seems us too risky.
082  The former concentration camp
"Campo de Concentração do Tarrafal"
1½ miles south of Tarrafal at “Chão Bom”
was built by the Portuguese in 1936 and
closed in 1954. For many years it was a site
of atrocities by the fascist regime of Salazar
083  The young mother in Tarrafal
basks in the happiness of her baby
084  The deserted black sandy beach
of “Ribeira da Prata” south of Tarrafal
is an insiders' tip
Thus we forget about hiking and just enjoy the fantastic scenery to little hamlets, green valleys and around the rugged “Serra da Malagueta”. Only when Tarrafal and its Bay comes into sight, we turn. Prior to cut a road through the mountain range in the 1980s, there was no connection from the southern to the northern part.
Everywhere lovely churches pop up, be it in the middle of a farming area or with a bizarre mountain backdrop
085  Church of Variante near “Ribeirão
Chiqueiro”, north of Praia at the main
intersection to Assomada and Salinas
at the east coast
086  Church of Picos, some miles
before Assomada along the main
road from Praia
087  Church of Santa Catarina, just
north of Assomada, along the main
road to Tarrafal
Soon afterwards, our LandCruiser is twisting from São Domingos up the hills on a narrow cobble stone track to the 3’550 ft. high Monte Tchôta with its many antennas. Neatly dressed church goers are crossing us. They are on their way to the Sunday mass. Some of them even take along a stool or a chair, because often churches cannot take in all faithful – there are too many.
088  Lush and green is the landscape
in the region of the ‘National Botanic
Garden’ in “São Jorge dos Orgãos“
089  With a little explorer spirit we always
find a lovely spot for a picnic and camping.
Here close to the ‘National Botanical
Garden’ in “São Jorge dos Orgãos“ .....
090  ..... in the same region we discover
also this huge mango tree. Mango trees
are really true shade providers
The vegetation gets greener and lusher. After six miles, the road ends in front of the gate to the “antenna farm”. While Emil walks through the forest in search of panorama views, I simply ask the gate guard if he lets me pass. He does and even escorts me to the places with the best views over mountain peaks and valleys. On our way back to the main road, women and girls carrying loads of wood on their heads walk home. Africa remains Africa!
091  Our LandCruiser is rumbling over
the cobble stone track through lush vege-
tation that leads to the ‘National Botanical
Garden’ south of “São Jorge dos Orgãos“
092  A plant that attracted our attention:
Castor oil plant (Ricinus communis),
called also palm of Christ or simply ricinus
093  Vegetable gardens interrupted by
palm trees in a fertile valley north of Praia
on the way to Pedra Badejo at the east
coast. Besides vegetable especially
maize, fruits and sugar cane is cultivated
On February 28th, our departure day dawns. We pack our bags at the Hotel America and head to the port of Praia. Despite that we are more than happy to finally be able to move on, our departure is also filled with sadness and emotions. During the total 128 days we spent on this island – only interrupted by our trip to the islands of Fogo and Brava it became in a way a kind of “home“ to us. We knew the faces of the people around us and the people new us.
094  Yellow, green, rust red, blue: The
pastel-colored houses of the village of
"Vale da Custa" shine in all shades. The
hamlet is just besides the enormous
construction project of ‘Sambala’,
north of the airport of Praia
095  They live peacefully in symbioses:
Cows and their cattle egrets
096  A picture to enjoy: Bougainvilleas
in a beautiful color combination along
Praia's seashore
Be it at in the supermarket, among the street sellers, at the “Rincón de Juan“, where we often took the menu of the day, at the “chicken house”, where we ordered grilled chicken and fries, at the pizzeria where they knew very well that I insisted on a lot of cheese or at the daily evening run along the sea promenade. We even knew parts of the peaceful street dogs and they knew us. To two of them we got really attached. They knew exactly at which time we would arrive and waited for us, even crossed the road to greet us. Of course it was also for the food we brought them, but still – it was nice. Now new land is waiting for us – São Nicolau, our fourth island of Cape Verde.
097  He does not have to pay any rent:
A mobile shoemaker in Praia
098  Ok? The street vendor in Praia
recounts the escudos she just got for
a bunch of bananas
099  "Somos Velocidade – Somos
Cabo Verde" = "We are velocity – we
are Cape Verde". Each time we see
this logo, it makes us smile while remem-
bering that the release of our LandCruiser
took 25 days in the port of Praia!
The "Greater"-Middle East trip 2012/13:
Sharjah/Dubai/1st Traveler's Festival/Emirates National Auto Museum - UAE with car Nov. 2012 to Jan. 2013 - part 1
Western UAE - Liwa - United Arab Emirates  with car in January 2013 - part 2
Oman 2013 – Part 1 - February 2013: Musandam Peninsula
Oman 2013 – Part 2 - February 2013: Sohar - Muscat - Rustaq - Nizwa
Oman 2013 – Part 3 - March 2013: Sur - East Coast - Island of Masirah - Dhofar
Oman 2013 – Part 4 - March 2013: Salalah & Surroundings (Dhofar) - Nizwa
Oman 2013 – Part 5 - March 2013: Western Hajar Mountains
Al Ain, Eastcoast & Ras al Khaima - United Arab Emirates with our car in April 2013 - part 3
Iran - part 1: Ferry Port Bandar Abbas-Shiraz-Persepolis-Pasargad (between Persepolis and Yazd) May 2013
Iran - part 2: Pasargad (excl.)-Yazd-Esfahan May 2013
Iran - part 3: Esfahan (excl.)-Chelgerd-Hamadan-Sanandaj-Orumiyeh May 2013
Turkey: Iran Border - Esendere - Hakkari - Van - Dogubayazit - Kars - Ardahan-Hopa - Georgia Border May 28 to June 4, 2013
Georgia: part 1: Ajaria - Gori - Tbilisi - Kakheti - Azerbaijan Border June 4 to 13, 2013
Azerbaijan: Georgia Border - Balakan - Seki - Lahiç - Baku - Xinaliq - Quba - Laza - Baku - Ganca - Georgia Border June 13 to 24, 2013
Armenia part 1: Georgia Border - Akhtala - Haghpat - Dilijan - Lake Sevan - Selim - Arates - Nagorno-Karabakh July 2 to 9, 2013
Armenia part 2: Nagorno-Karabakh - Goris - Tatev - Noravank - Khor Virap - Echmiadzin - Geghard - Gyumri - Georgia 17 to 22, 2013
Articles in newspapers about us on Cape Verde:
Article: "Estão em São Nicolau: Emil e Liliana há 30 anos à volta do mundo", Online Newspaper "Jornal de São Nicolau" - March 6, 2014
Article: "Cabo Verde na Volta ao Mundo de Emil e Liliana Schmid", Daily Newspaper "ASemana" - March 9, 2014