Before the dirt rises: Land of Boa Vista

Cape Verde or Cabo verde as known to locals is just of West Africa. It consists of ten volcanic islands and is full of beautiful untouched land, it was said by a local “you came at a good time because 10 years from now this will all be filled up with buildings” and so the dirt will rise and the once beautiful flat lands of Cabo Verde will be tall, wide constructions of housing, shopping malls and souvenir stores.

The islands were uninhabited until discovered by the Portuguese in 1456, and for three centuries, the islands were a setting for the transatlantic slave trade, exile for political prisoners of Portugal and a place of refuge for Jews and other victims of religious persecution during the Spanish-Portuguese Inquisition.

Discovery period, slave trade and famine

The discovers of Cape Verde, the Portuguese, described the islands upon their arrival in 1456 as “completely uninhabited.” In any case, there is still no evidence of any human life before the descoberta.
The Portuguese intended to establish new trade routes and goods, as well as expanding their knowledge of geography since Islamic traders controlled the Trans-Saharan trade of gold and slaves to the north and salt to the south. The Turks dominated the overland route along the Mediterranean for the trade of spices and fabric with India, charging high customs duties. The goal was to discover a new, Christian-controlled access to gold, slaves and spices in West Africa and India.*

Walking past the deconstructed buildings and bright colourful homes with the glowing green, bright blue ocean shore peaking  between each side street, a thought ran through my mind ‘this will all change’ and although for a moment lost in my selfishness for wanting Boa Vista to be stuck in this time of transition, I saw the need of affection to its buildings and littered landscapes. Hearing the crashing waves roaring along the sandy shore I knew Boa Vista will always be a land of unexpected adventures for me and I hoped all who would see it would not just see the prospects of touristic value but will see it also for its peaceful beauty that vibrates all throughout the Island .