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São Nicolau

The  untouched   pearl  of Cape Verde

Welcome to the enchanting island of Cape Verde - São Nicolau, a hidden jewel in the heart of the Atlantic. This quiet island, lesser-known than its siblings, is a perfect place for those who seek peace, authenticity, and a touch of adventure. Dive deep into the spirit of Cape Verdean simplicity, known as Morabeza, as you discover the traditional settlements of Ribeira Brava and Tarrafal. The unhurried pace, combined with stunning tropical valleys and hiking tracks, promises a mind opening experience.

Ribeira Brava The heartbeat of São Nicolau lies in its capital, Ribeira Brava. Housing nearly 20,000 souls, this city pulsates with local traditions, colonial architecture, and the melodic rhythms of Funaná and Batuku. The musical legacy of São Nicolau is deeply rooted, often echoing stories of love, longing, and island life. As you traverse this charismatic town, let the age-old tales of sailors and fishermen, narrated in the harmonious tunes of local performers, envelop you.


The stunning rock formations by Carbeirinho beach are considered on of the top highlights in the archipel. The lava rocks, carved out by the ocean and wind form a moonlike landscape with particular shapes. The caves are connected to black sand beaches and spots to relax. Dare jumping of the cliffs with the locals on your next trip to Sao Nicolau!



A tapestry of rugged mountains, verdant valleys, and secluded beaches, São Nicolau is a nature lover's paradise. The island's volcanic origins have sculpted dramatic landscapes such as Monte Gordo, reaching 1,312 meters, which casts its protective shadow over verdant plantations below. The Carberinho rock formations, sculpted by time and the ocean, offer a surreal panorama against the azure backdrop.

While São Nicolau's beaches, like Praia Branca, may not beckon swimmers due to strong undertows, they provide an unspoiled haven for contemplation, picnics, and beachcombing.


Rugged mountain landscapes - viewpoint on Ribeira Brava

Highlights of São Nicolau 

• Ribeira Brava: Dive into the island's history, explore the local markets, or participate in the São João Baptista festival in June. 
• Tarrafal: A quintessential fishing village known for its black sandy beaches and evolving as a surfing hotspot. 
• Monte Gordo National Park: A sanctuary for endemic flora and fauna. Perfect for trekking enthusiasts aiming for the peak and the vistas it offers. 
• Carberinho: Marvel at the dramatic coastal erosions and take in the mesmerizing sunset views. 
• Fajã de Cima: A quaint village known for its traditional Fogo wine and hospitable inhabitants. 
• Barril: Discover the charming salt pans that have historically shaped the island's economy. 
• Praia Branca: A secluded beach that tells tales of the island's volcanic past, perfect for solitude seekers. 
• Rocha Quebrada: A hidden gem where the mountains meet the sea, offering panoramic views that are a photographer's dream.

Where to stay

  • Belavista Guesthouse €€ 

  • Tarrafal Lodges €€€ 

  • Ribeira Retreat €€€ 

  • Casa do Mar €€€€

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