Discovering Africa: The Chocolate Islands of Sao Tome & Principe

Sao Tome & Principe
Sao Tome & Principe

AFRICANGLOBE – Situated on the Equator, the tiny state of Sao Tome and Principe consists of two volcanic islands, located 300 km from the western coast of Africa, in the Gulf of Guinea.

Sao Tome is a small mountainous island 50 km long and 32 km wide, where nearly 165,000 people live. With 6,000 inhabitants, Principe is smaller and also wilder.

These two islands are practically tropical paradise with their white sandy beaches lined with palm trees, crystalline waters and unexplored jungles.

The lush forests and fertile plains are surrounded by streams which are then thrown into the Atlantic Ocean. Impressive ferns, hundreds of species of orchids and other epiphytes thrive in these forests, home to swarms of butterflies and birds.

The archipelago has two dry seasons, from January to February and from June to September, which are the most suitable periods for a trip to the islands. Sao Tome and Principe has also been one of the leading producers of cocoa in the world since the early 20th century.

The people of Sao Tome & Principe are very friendly people who make you feel comfortable on their land and love sharing their culture. Even though, it is still a poor state, Sao Tome and Principe is one of the African countries with the highest literacy rate.

The cultural wealth of the archipelago is vibrant with music, dance, theater, and more. Sao Tome and Principe is also a paradise for fishermen who can tease blue marlin and sailfish.

The archipelago is also a hotbed of nesting leatherback turtles. The city of Sao Tome has an international airport that provides direct links with Portugal and Gabon. Flights to Sao Tome and Principe are possible from Paris with a transit in Lisbon. Four weekly flights from Sao Tome to Principe are available for worldwide travelers. A crossing is also possible by boat and you can reach the archipelago by car as well.

Sao Tome & Principe
Sao Tome & Principe

The beautiful beaches of Sao Tome and Principe invite to relax. The observation of the seabed is in snorkeling or bottle. The dolphin safaris and whale watching leatherback turtles come to lay are a “must-see”. Excursions are organized in the Obo National Park all year round for visitors and local people.

In Sao Tome, the National Museum, in the old fort of Sao Sebastio gives a good overview of the local culture.

Finally, the capital city of the island has a number of restaurants where you can taste the particular Calulu, stew meat or spicy fish. There are also several bars in Sao Tome, some of which hold regular musical evenings and few nightclubs including a beachfront.

 

By: Vénicia Guinot