Cape Verde: Leia Wilkinson, Social Media

Date Posted: 26/11/2019

One of the most underrated winter sun destinations on Earth… is Cape Verde. Its year-round sunshine, captivating colonial heritage, mesmerising volcanic landscape, and opportunity to island hop so easily are just a few of the reasons why this amazing place makes the perfect break away in the winter months. 

Leia from our Social Media team visited last month and has so much to tell us about her amazing experience.

Flying from Manchester, in around five and a half hours she touched down in one of the most beautiful African countries to exist for a seven-night stay at Riu Karamboa - Boa Vista. 

“The resort is massive, with a stunning beachfront location and lots to see in and around the hotel. What I loved most about the location was that from the airport it was only a 4-5 minute coach ride, which was ideal after a long flight. If you did want to check out the local town it was only a 20-minute drive by coach or taxi, which the hotel reps were happy to organise. I loved how it wasn’t located in the centre or right next to the town as it gave you a sense of privacy.

“The nearby beach is beautiful; crystal-clear waters and endless soft, white sand. If you head outside of the hotel to the left and walk for around 20 minutes you will find yourself the nicest little beach bar.

“The rooms were spotless and the housekeepers would create little features on your bed such as a swans using the towels and blankets, and would even fold your pyjamas into a bow!

“The restaurants were great and they were always replenishing the buffet with fresh choice. The main Santiago restaurant had great choice every breakfast, lunch and dinner time. The three speciality restaurants were also a delight; they required booking in advance but we didn't have any problem getting a table. The chefs were constantly coming out to check everything and every single person greeted you with a smile.

“During the day you definitely weren’t short of options for things to do. Whether you wanted to relax or be active, it wasn’t a problem. There are loads of activities throughout the day; such as volleyball, football, bingo, water aerobics, dancing, archery, bowling, water polo, and so much more! 

“The staff were really encouraging and would try to persuade you. This was a great way to make friends as there were people from all over who may have had similar interests. What I did love about the hotel was the evening entertainment as there was a variety of themed shows for every night including Mamma Mia, Halloween Special, and an African show. Once the show was finished there was a nightclub called Pacha, which was open until late. My personal favourite thing to do at night was the karaoke bar; it was lively, fun, and a great way to get to know knew people and have a laugh.

“There were even extra activities to do such as sunset beach dinners, quad biking, and snorkelling. I recommend to go when its whale and turtle season as this just seems to make your holiday that extra bit more memorable. The pool area was very spacious and even had a little bar area with a Jacuzzi.

“Outside of the hotel I went sailing; we went to a little ship dock only about a minute’s drive away, got on a little boat to take us to a larger one, which went out to sea. We had snacks on the boat and also got to visit a small island to go exploring and snorkelling if we wished.

“The staff, from the cleaners to reception, bars to entertainment, were all superb. I cannot praise them enough. They had a local phrase which was just contagious and had the whole hotel saying, ‘No stress!’

“You'll often see them with bottles on their heads dancing to traditional music behind the many bars. Everyone is so attentive and they just make you feel so welcome and happy to be a guest of the hotel. The animation team helped make the holiday even more special - they were so friendly and ended up people I would class as friends! They are one of the main reasons I want to go back.

“My highlights were definitely the lush weather from dawn till dusk, evening shows, and island exploring as I found some stunning shells which I brought home as a memorabilia!”