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Praia Travel Guide, Cape Verde

Praia Travel-Guide – City Function and Urban Aspects

This Praia travel-guide will provide all the basic information you need if you want to visit the capital city of the nation of Cape Verde. Praia is the largest city on the island nation in the Atlantic Ocean and it has about 125.000 inhabitants. It is located on the southern coast of one of Cape Verde islands, Santiago, and it is home to the ferry port and to an international airport. All government buildings are located in Praia and the city also functions as the nation’s most important economical and commercial centre, mainly due to its port. The urban aspect of the city is that of a settlement built on the many plateaus in the area and surrounded by lots of valleys, and the city centre is also named Plateau by the locals, as it stands on the largest geological form of its kind.

Praia Travel-Guide – Expansion and Economy

During the evolution of the city, the areas surrounding the Plateau were considered suburbs, so infrastructure has not developed very well in those particular areas. After the independence people wanted to merge all of the surroundings with the original city and there started a process of de-centralization which is still going on as the city expands towards north. Although it is not the most populated of the city districts, the Plateau still attracts the most people and tourists, as it is the commercial and economical centre. Praia’s economy is based on the service sector with quite little industry, and the main areas are education, tourism, restaurants and hotels. The city also heavily relies on its port which assures high commercial activity. The main exports are sugar cane, coffee and tropical fruits.

Praia Travel-Guide – Culture and Eclectism

Praia has an international airport that provides flights all over the world, so this is the fastest way to get to Dakar in Senegal or Nouakchott in Mauritania. The general aspect of the city is more open minded and cosmopolitan, while the rest of the island retains a more conservative feel. Because of inter-racial migration the city has become a melting pot of different cultures from all over the world, so if you’re looking for more specific local elements this Praia travel-guide advises you to take a day trip to the island. There is also a very intense cultural life in Praia, with exhibitions, concerts and street performances, and they also have the buildings to sustain all of this: the Palace of Culture, the Ethnographic Museum and various concert halls. Nightlife also thrives in Praia, and the bars and clubs offer entertainment for all tastes. There are three universities in Praia, as well as two local radio stations and one local television program.

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