Geography

Practically the whole island is a stratovolcano. It lies in the lee of the enormous Fogo volcano. Volcanic activity on the island has been mainly located along three sets of lineaments, which all intersect at the crest of ground that forms the highest part of the island. Brava has no documented historical eruptions, but its youthful volcanic morphology and the fact that earthquake swarms still occur indicate the potential for future eruptions.

Mountains

The places worth visiting can be seen in half a day, because the island is so small.  You can go on foot or by car to Miradoura de Nova Sintra with a general view of the town. Then walk up to Pico of Fontainhas, the island’s highest mountain peak. It’s worth walking until Nossa Senhora do Monte, where you’ll see many terraces.  The village is encrusted in the mountains and it was elevated in 1826 as a pilgrimage spot.

Transport

The airport, inaugurated in 1992, was closed because of the strong winds. The airline service ended in 2004.

You can combine your visit to Brava with a visit to the neighbour islands Fogo and Santiago.

Brava can be reached from Praia and Fogo almost exclusively via thepassenger/cargo ferry, the Kriola.

The Kriola is the first of Cabo Verde Fast Ferry‘s fleet of inter-island catamarans and connects the Sotavento islands of Santiago, Fogo and Brava.

 

The Kriola typically leaves Furna, its home port, at 7:30 on days of operation and returns between 09:30 and 11:00, depending on the day.

The route is typically BRAVA-FOGO-SANTIAGO-FOGO-BRAVA, but at least one day a week it makes a BRAVA-FOGO-BRAVA run. Travel time between Brava and Fogo is approximately 0:40 and approximately 3:30 between Fogo and Santiago (Praia).

 

The main harbour of Brava is Furna, on the east coast of the island. Buses and taxis are common, especially when the Kriola arrives in port.

On Brava you can reach the villages by “Aluguer” bus. There is no fixed schedule, as the aluguers wait until enough passengers have come before leaving.  A few taxis are available as well.

Lodging

In the villages Nova Sintra and Fajã are boarding-houses and you can find rooms for rent in houses of local residents of the other villages.  We can find out a boarding-house that suits you: info@cabocontact.com.

Trekking

The places worth visiting can be seen in half a day, because the island is so small.  You can go on foot or by car to Miradoura de Nova Sintra with a general view of the town.

Then walk up to Pico of Fontainhas, the island’s highest mountain peak.

It’s worth walking until Nossa Senhora do Monte, where you’ll see many terraces.  The village is encrusted in the mountains and it was elevated in 1826 as a pilgrimage spot.

Walking tracks:

-Vila Nova Sintra – Sorno – São Pedro – Vila Nova Sintra (9km, takes about 5 hours)

-Vila Nova Sintra – Levadura – Fajã d’Agua (6km, 2 hours)

-Vila Nova Sintra – Mato Grande – Monte Fontainhas – Mato – Nossa Senhora do Monte – Cova Joana – Vila Nova de Sintra (9km, 4 hours)

Cuisine

Only in the villages Nova Sintra, Fajã and Furna you’ll find restaurants.  The island’s traditional dishes are Xérem (maize-meal) an Djagacida.   A typical dessert of Brava is mango and pumpkin ‘pie’ (torta).

Economy

The main economy of the island is agricultural, related to irrigation andfishing (the island’s main production). Trading and private households depend on income from Cape Verdean residents from North America. Brava never had a lot of tourism. Tourism slowly boomed. The island is unsuitable for beach tourism because the steep shoreline allows few beaches.

Vila Nova Sintra

Vila Nova Sintra, an idyllic town with a museum, traditional Portuguese architecture, several churches and many shops.

Vinagre

Vinagre (Portuguese for Vinegar)

Fajã de Agua

Fajã de Agua, a small harbour on the West coast with a natural swimming pool, called “piscina“.

Nossa Senhora do Monte

Nossa Senhora do Monte, a village in the mountains with a pilgrimage church.

Cova Rodela

Cova Rodela, a village in the mountains with an impressive dragon tree in its main street.