Macaronesia in the Atlantic Ocean

31 December 2021 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, UNESCO World Heritage Reading Time:  6 minutes

Cámara de Lobos, Madeira © Luis Miguel Bugallo Sánchez/cc-by-sa-4.0

Cámara de Lobos, Madeira © Luis Miguel Bugallo Sánchez/cc-by-sa-4.0

Macaronesia is a collection of four volcanic archipelagos in the North Atlantic Ocean, off the coasts of the continents of Africa and Europe. Each archipelago is made up of a number of Atlantic oceanic islands, which are formed by seamounts on the ocean floor and have peaks above the ocean’s surface. Some of the Macaronesian islands belong to Portugal, some belong to Spain, and the rest belong to Cape Verde. Politically, the islands belonging to Portugal and Spain are part of the European Union. Geologically, Macaronesia is part of the African tectonic plate. Some of its islands – the Azores – are situated along the edge of that plate at the point where it abuts the Eurasian and North American plates. Macaronesia consists of four main archipelagos. From north to south, these are: the Azores, an Autonomous Region of Portugal, Madeira (also including the Savage Islands), an Autonomous Region of Portugal, the Canary Islands, an Autonomous Community of Spain and Cape Verde, an independent West African country.   read more…

Cape Verde

16 January 2012 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General Reading Time:  7 minutes

Mindelo, Baía do Porto Grande and Monte Cara © ElsondeMadrid

Mindelo, Baía do Porto Grande and Monte Cara © ElsondeMadrid

The Republic of Cape Verde is an island country, spanning an archipelago of 10 islands located in the central Atlantic Ocean, 570 kilometres off the coast of Western Africa. The islands, covering a combined area of slightly over 4,000 square kilometres (1,500 sq mi), are of volcanic origin and while three of them (Sal, Boa Vista and Maio) are fairly flat, sandy and dry, the remaining ones are generally rockier and have more vegetation. However, because of the infrequent occurrence of rainfall the overall landscape is not particularly green, despite what the country’s name suggests (verde is Portuguese for “green”). The name of the country stems instead from the nearby Cap Vert, on the Senegalese coast, which in its turn was originally named “Cabo Verde” when it was sighted by Portuguese explorers in 1444, a few years before the islands were discovered.   read more…

Country overview

9 November 2011 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General Reading Time:  5 minutes

In addition to the regular search function, a country overview is available here. Click on the country name to see all currently available blog entries.   read more…

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