The friendly people with their colourful dresses who manage to eke out a living from this arid volcanic land… we enjoyed a wonderful spontaneous hour spent with a family who grew fruit and vegetables on their 3 hectare small holding, and also distilled ‘Grogue’, the local fire water. Everywhere we were met with friendly smiles and “bom dia”
The incredible cobbled roads and paths which climbed up near vertical mountainsides to 4000 feet above sea level…
The fabulous Coastal Path from Ponta do Sol….
But for me it has to be the Island of Santo Antao that captured my heart. From the moment we climbed aboard our mini bus in Porto Novo to make the fabulous journey over the mountains to Ponta do Sol, I was in love with the Island.
We had a most friendly hotel in the small town with the lovely French speaking Betty as ‘mine hostess’. We ate out in noisy local restaurants on some evenings, sampling the local atmosphere. The walks came in many varieties, but my favourite was the cobbled coastal path which somehow clung to the cliff-side with the azure Atlantic on our right hand side. On other days we descended into the Cova volcanic crater before making our way steeply down into a lush green “Ribeira” or valley with bananas and mangos everywhere, and on another day followed these green valleys to their end. The volcanic mountains were always around us twisted into amazing shapes with seemingly vertical faces.
Before I finish I must say how grateful our small, but perfectly formed, group were toKath Bensen for stepping in to lead with very little notice.