Mindelo, São Vicente, Cape Verde (Cabo Verde)

Typical apartments above shops on the ground floor in downtown Mindelo, São Vicente, Cape Verde (Cabo Verde), the nation_s second largest city

Typical apartments above shops on the ground floor in downtown Mindelo, São Vicente, Cape Verde (Cabo Verde), the nation’s second largest city

 

With live morna music making center stage every night at local bars and nightclubs along Rua Santa Antonio, legendary singer Cesária Évora’s birthplace of Mindelo has earned a solid reputation as Cape Verde’s liveliest city and unofficial cultural capital; with a population of 70,000 (the majority of the island’s 92,000 people), Mindelo is the nation’s second largest city.  Evenings are for enjoying morna, the country’s popular music genre, and for people-watching along the Rua Lisboa, while days can be spent kite surfing along the archipelago or fishing for giant blue marlin.

 

Praça Nova is the main city square of Mindelo, São Vicente, Cape Verde (Cabo Verde), Cape Verde_s liveliest city and unofficial cultural capital

Praça Nova is the main city square of Mindelo, São Vicente, Cape Verde (Cabo Verde), Cape Verde’s liveliest city and unofficial cultural capital

 

A beautifully restored, colonial period-designed building in downtown Mindelo, São Vicente, Cape Verde (Cabo Verde), near the Torre de Belém and fish market

A beautifully restored, colonial period-designed building in downtown Mindelo, São Vicente, Cape Verde (Cabo Verde), near the Torre de Belém and fish market

 

On our cultural tour of the city we visited the handicraft museum in the historic center and walked by the Torre de Belém – a quarter-size replica of the original tower in the river in Lisbon — (which houses a maritime museum).  Our walk also included visits to the vegetable and fish and markets, where at the latter we were able to watch the local fishermen delivering their daily catch.  The highlight of the tour was a specially arranged visit to the workshop of a local guitar maker, Luis Baptista, to learn about the traditional methods still employed in making stringed instruments; afterwards, we got to hear some Cape Verdean music performed by Luis Baptista and some friends in his atelier.  After the tour we had a delicious lunch at La Pergola focused on local cuisine and local fish, with an order of chachupa (the Cape Verdean slow-cooked stew of hominy, beans, cassava, sweet potato, and fish or meat).  We also had an appetizer of another local favorite, goat cheese (sometimes served with fresh papaya and then known as Romeo and Julieta).  We also had a tasting of the local grogue and poncheGrogue is Cape Verde’s national drink, distilled from sugar cane. While most production takes place on Santiago and Santo Antão, the drink can be enjoyed across the islands.  Grogue is used as a base in various medicines and in some versions of the caipirinha (a cocktail very popular in Brazil).  Ponche is a local Cape Verdean preparation (comparable to a similar product in Madeira) that is a combination of grogue (rum) diluted with the addition of molasses (and lime), lowering the alcohol content.

 

The harbor of Mindelo, São Vicente, Cape Verde (Cabo Verde)

The harbor of Mindelo, São Vicente, Cape Verde (Cabo Verde)

 

Typical retail stores in downtown Mindelo, São Vicente, Cape Verde (Cabo Verde)

Typical retail stores in downtown Mindelo, São Vicente, Cape Verde (Cabo Verde)

Behind the fishing boat on the beach is our ship (on the horizon), docked in Mindelo, São Vicente, Cape Verde (Cabo Verde)

Behind the fishing boat on the beach is our ship (on the horizon), docked in Mindelo, São Vicente, Cape Verde (Cabo Verde)

 

A store in downtown Mindelo, São Vicente, Cape Verde (Cabo Verde)

A store in downtown Mindelo, São Vicente, Cape Verde (Cabo Verde)

 

Torre de Belém – a quarter-size replica of the original tower in the river in Lisbon -- which houses a maritime museum, Mindelo, São Vicente, Cape Verde (Cabo Verde)

Torre de Belém – a quarter-size replica of the original tower in the river in Lisbon — which houses a maritime museum, Mindelo, São Vicente, Cape Verde (Cabo Verde)

 

A card game being played by locals just outside the city_s fish market, Mindelo, São Vicente, Cape Verde (Cabo Verde)

A card game being played by locals just outside the city’s fish market, Mindelo, São Vicente, Cape Verde (Cabo Verde)

 

Fishermen delivering their catch to the city_s daily fish market, Mercado de Peixe, Mindelo, São Vicente, Cape Verde (Cabo Verde)

Fishermen delivering their catch to the city’s daily fish market, Mercado de Peixe, Mindelo, São Vicente, Cape Verde (Cabo Verde)

 

The African Market with local goods for sale, Mindelo, São Vicente, Cape Verde (Cabo Verde)

The African Market with local goods for sale, Mindelo, São Vicente, Cape Verde (Cabo Verde)

 

Two boys in a local neighborhood playing soccer, Mindelo, São Vicente, Cape Verde (Cabo Verde)

Two boys in a local neighborhood playing soccer, Mindelo, São Vicente, Cape Verde (Cabo Verde)

 

Mercado Municipal Mindelo (Municipal Market) is a two-story covered market set in a colonial building with locals in stalls selling spices, fruits, and vegetables), Mindelo, São Vicent

Mercado Municipal Mindelo (Municipal Market) is a two-story covered market set in a colonial building with locals in stalls selling spices, fruits, and vegetables), Mindelo, São Vicente, Cape Verde (Cabo Verde)

 

Two ladies at their stalls selling fresh vegetables in the Mercado Municipal Mindelo (Municipal Market), Mindelo, São Vicente, Cape Verde (Cabo Verde)

Two ladies at their stalls selling fresh vegetables in the Mercado Municipal Mindelo (Municipal Market), Mindelo, São Vicente, Cape Verde (Cabo Verde)

 

Praia da Laginha, adjacent to the cruise terminal docks, has spectacular azure-colored waters, Mindelo, São Vicente, Cape Verde (Cabo Verde)

Praia da Laginha, adjacent to the cruise terminal docks, has spectacular azure-colored waters, Mindelo, São Vicente, Cape Verde (Cabo Verde)

 

Legal Notices: All photographs copyright © 2018 by Richard C. Edwards. All Rights Reserved Worldwide. Permission to link to this blog post is granted for educational and non-commercial purposes only.

 

Lisboa (Lisbon) Landmarks, Portugal

Torre de Belém (Belém Tower) or the Tower of St. Vincent, was built in 1515 in the Douro River (which was subsequently filled in, bringing the shore adjacent to the tower) to guard the entrance to Lisbon’s harbor, Lisboa (Lisbon), Portugal

Torre de Belém (Belém Tower) or the Tower of St. Vincent, was built in 1515 in the Douro River (which was subsequently filled in, bringing the shore adjacent to the tower) to guard the entrance to Lisbon’s harbor, Lisboa (Lisbon), Portugal

 

Torre de Belém (Belém Tower) or the Tower of St. Vincent is a fortified tower located in the civil parish of Santa Maria de Belém in Lisboa (Lisbon), Portugal.   Designed by Francisco de Arruda, the striking Belém Tower was built in 1515 in the Douro River (which was subsequently filled in, bringing the shore adjacent to the tower) to guard the entrance to Lisbon’s harbor.

 

Belém Tower’s impressive Manueline architecture includes watchtowers displaying strong Moorish influences in the arched windows and ribbed cupolas, Lisboa (Lisbon), Portugal

Belém Tower’s impressive Manueline architecture includes watchtowers displaying strong Moorish influences in the arched windows and ribbed cupolas, Lisboa (Lisbon), Portugal

 

Belém Tower’s impressive Manueline architecture includes sculptures that depict historical figures such as Saint Vincent while its watchtowers display strong Moorish influences in the arched windows and ribbed cupolas.  The UNESCO World Heritage monument also features Venetian-style loggias and a statue of Our Lady of Safe Homecoming, which faces the river.

 

The 25 de Abril Bridge (25th of April Bridge), inaugurated on August 6, 1966, is a suspension bridge connecting the city of Lisbon to the municipality of Almada on the left bank of the Tejo (Tagus) River, Lisboa (Lisbon), Portugal

The 25 de Abril Bridge (25th of April Bridge), inaugurated on August 6, 1966, is a suspension bridge connecting the city of Lisbon to the municipality of Almada on the left bank of the Tejo (Tagus) River, Lisboa (Lisbon), Portugal

 

Riding down one of Lisbon’s steep hills in a cable car or street car, looking at the 25 de Abril Bridge, you might imagine that you’re really in San Francisco.  For years now, visitors to Lisbon have pointed out the similarities between the two cities: both are on the west coast of their continents; are built on about seven steep hills, have classic cable and street cars and both have been devastated by major earthquakes.  The biggest similarity, however, remains the bright orange suspension bridge connecting Lisbon to Almada, which resembles the iconic Golden Gate Bridge.  At a total length of 7,470 feet (2,277 meters), the 25 de Abril Bridge carries six road lanes and two railway tracks. It was built by the American Bridge Company, which also constructed the San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge.

 

Padrão dos Descobrimentos (Monument to the Discoveries) is a monument on the northern bank of the Tagus River estuary honoring all explorers of the Age of Discoveries, Lisboa (Lisbon), Portugal

Padrão dos Descobrimentos (Monument to the Discoveries) is a monument on the northern bank of the Tagus River estuary honoring all explorers of the Age of Discoveries, Lisboa (Lisbon), Portugal

 

Padrão dos Descobrimentos (Monument to the Discoveries) is a monument on the northern bank of the Tagus River estuary, in the civil parish of Santa Maria de Belém in Lisboa (Lisbon), Portugal.   Shaped like a ship’s prow, the 171 foot (50 meters) monument was designed in 1939 by architect Jose Angelo Cottinelli Temo and sculptor Leopoldo de Almeida, as a temporary beacon (built out of plaster) during the Portuguese World Exhibition in honor of all explorers of the Age of Discoveries.

 

Padrão dos Descobrimentos (Monument to the Discoveries) features 30 statues, portraying Vasco de Gama, King Alfonso V (among others), led by Henry the Navigator, Lisboa (Lisbon), Portugal

Padrão dos Descobrimentos (Monument to the Discoveries) features 30 statues, portraying Vasco de Gama, King Alfonso V (among others), led by Henry the Navigator, Lisboa (Lisbon), Portugal

 

Reconstructed in concrete in 1960 to commemorate the 500th year of the death of Infante Dom Henrique (Henry the Navigator), the sculpture features 30 statues, portraying Vasco de Gama, King Alfonso V (among others), led by Henry the Navigator.  A giant marble wind rose at the foot of the Monument contains the key exploration dates throughout the centuries.  The interior is divided into three levels with an auditorium and tow large exhibition halls, and the terrace at the top of the monument delivers spectacular views of the city and the river.

As shown in the closeup of the statues in the photograph below, Infante Dom Henrique (Henry the Navigator) is followed by King Alfonso V, Vasco de Gama, Navigator Alfonso Baldaia, Navigator Pedro Alvares Cabral, and Navigator Fernao de Magalhaes.

 

Henry the Navigator leads the explorers of the Age of Discoveries, Lisboa (Lisbon), Portugal

Henry the Navigator leads the explorers of the Age of Discoveries, Lisboa (Lisbon), Portugal