Sal Island Tour………. by Cheryl

Here is a short video of and aeriel view of Santa Maria, Sal Island, Cape Verde which shows our beautiful beaches and friendly people.

On one of those days where you think you would like to do something different instead of sitting around the pool or swimming on the beach, have a look around to find something else to do.

As I live on Sal I don’t often go off on Island Tours, been there done that etc., but as I had a visitor I wanted to show him around the island. We booked a tour for a Friday morning. The Aluger (truck) was organised for us through Jeannette and Julio. The truck came to pick us up on time and where we said we would like to be collected from at 9.30a.m. Then off we went to pick up more tourists from three hotels

From here we drove up to Espargos and up to the top of the hill where you could clearly see the town below, Palmeira in the distance and Amilcar Cabral airport and runway.

Off back down the steep hill we trundled in the truck, then headed to the Port at Palmeira where we watched local fisherman bringing in their catch.

After a short stop here we got back into the truck and made our way to Burracona and the blue eye. Someone asked, ‘If the sun wasn’t shining when we got there, would we see the blue eye’? Mamadu our tour guide replied ‘the blue eye will be a black eye’!

We headed away from Espargos and turned off the road and onto a dirt track. We drove through what some people refer to as a Shanty Town, once through that we came across a shack called ‘Atelier Bar Mirage’. we climbed out of truck and saw the mirage ahead, it looked like there was a lake in the distance. A few of us looked inside the shack and found a small bar and some little stalls selling gifts.

Back to the truck and on to Burracona where we were told we could have a swim in a rock pool. When we reached Burracona we made our way to see the Blue Eye, yes the sun was shining so the eye was blue. You have to climb down some rocks to see it so we had to be careful especially those wearing flip flops.

After this we made our way down to the rock pool, this also had to be done carefully as there were many more rocks to climb down and over, some people may not be able to manage this. The water was lovely and cool so we spent 10-15mins bathing and taking photos.

Once dried off and back at the truck, not having bought anything African from the people who had set up near the Blue Eye, we were told by Mamadu we could now take some lunch or refreshments at Bom Dia, a café in Espargos. A cooling beer at Bom Dia was enjoyed by most of the group.

Feeling refreshed we then set off to the Salinas at Pedra Da Lume, a few members of the group paid another amount to enter the Salinas and bathe in the salt waters, while I and a few others just walked up the side of the crater and took some photos but with the Security Guard yelling at us to come back down!

Once everyone was back in the truck we headed back into Santa Maria and were dropped off at our chosen points. Our group had a mixture of British, Spanish and German tourists, we managed to have a number of conversations and quite a few laughs on the trip. It had been a great day and enjoyed by everyone, including myself. Our tour cost 18 euros per head, you pay for your own refreshments and entrance to the Salinas.

There are other island tours and some well-informed tour guides. The tour may vary with different operators and prices will range from 18-45 euros, some tours are shorter or longer than others or may operate on certain days. Whoever you decide to go with, take a towel, swimming costume, sunglasses, large bottle of water, sun lotion, a hat maybe, and perhaps a change of clothing (if you really want too).