A group of islands off the coast of West Africa, Cape Verde is a small enclave producing a mixture of African and Portuguese culture now thriving by itself in the middle of the Atlantic.

These islands are called Verde for a reason, their green, lush landscape makes them a beautiful place to visit in the westernmost reaches of Africa.

What to do

Hiking is the reason for the season in Cape Verde and there are plenty of hikes to go on and things to see. Take a walk up the volcano on the island of Fogo and survey Cape Verde from the highest point in the nation. The volcano is 2,829 meters tall and offers grand views of a lot of water, or you can tour Cidade Velha, the first Portuguese settlement on the island (known as the ancient city of Praia) and other cities and ruins now overgrown with foliage.

Getting there

Traveling to Cape Verde is going to have to be by plane unless you've got your own boat anchored off the coast of Africa. Although there are shuttles in between the islands and the mainland, boat shuttles are expensive and generally leave when they fill up, rather than when they are scheduled.

Daily flights run from Lisbon, Madrid, Milan and Munich, and a weekly flight from Boston serves most of North America.

Where to stay

There are numerous hotels from two to four stars scattered over the islands as well as furnished apartments for rent on the islands for stays of a week or more. There are also hostels available in Mindelo, considered Cape Verde's most active city.

Need more information on Cape Verde before you board the plane? Take a look at the message boards, where you can ask and answer travel questions about Cape Verde.