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Porto Novo Sao Antao Cape Verde Cruise Port Guide


Santo Antão is the most majestic island of Cape Verde. The grandeur of its mountains and valleys earned it the title of the ‘Switzerland of Cape Verde’.

Cruise ships dock close to town.

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Monthly Climate Averages for Porto Novo Sao Antao Cape Verde



The dramatic mountain range that divides the island of Santo Antao into two, with peaks rearing up to 4,921ft (1,500m), make it attractive for trekking, particularly through the tropical vegetation of the deep green valleys which encase the 16th-century town of Povoacao. In contrast to the mountainous interior, the island's coast is rugged and bare, but sugar cane, bananas and coffee are grown by the locals. Sugar cane is the raw material for the famed Cape Verde rum, called 'grogue', which is produced here and enjoyed by visitors and locals alike. A walk around the main town of Ponta do Sol is recommended to enjoy the vista of some old colonial buildings, and the main site of historic interest is a mysterious inscribed rock near Janela dating from the 1400s, when the islands were believed to be uninhabited and undiscovered.

Tours Excursions Transportation:

Tthe spectacular 36km car ride from the ferry landing at Porto Novo over the island’s central ridge to Ribeira Grande is worth the trip.

If you want to see a lot of the island in a single day, hire your own aluguer, a kind of (open) minibus, though expect to pay at least CVE7000 for a full day. You can usually arrange one when you arrive at Porto Novo.

It pays to compare your cruise line tours here

Nearby Places:

Shopping and Food

Fish lovers will be in heaven on Cape Verde. The grilled lobster is superb as are the fresh tuna, octopus and multitude of other delicacies.


Cape Verde Escudo (1 Euro= 113 Escudos)
Hotels and banks may charge slightly more.

Credit cards are accepted at an increasing number of up-market hotels, but not all of them. MasterCard and Visa are the most widely accepted so far.

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Opening Hours and Holidays:

Everything is closed on public holidays and on Sundays, and many shops also close early on Fridays. Opening hours tend to be Mediterranean - that is, Monday-Friday 08:00/08:30 - 12:00/12:30 and 14:00/14:30 - 18:00/18:30; Saturday 08:30 - 12:00. Banks are often shut in the afternoon. Restaurants operate from about 19:00 - 23:00. Nightclubs tend to open at midnight.

Public holidays:
1 January           New Year
20 January         National Heroes Day
1 May                 Labour Day
5 July                  Independence Day
15 August           Nossa Senhora da Graça [Our Lady of Grace]
12 September     Nationality Day
1 November        All Saints Day
25 December      Christmas Day
Mardi Gras and Good Friday are also national holidays.

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