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A Full-day Santiago Island Tour Experience with Bu Country Tours

By Kach Umandap October 15th, 2022 Posted in Africa Travel Blog, Destination, Travel Blog, Travel Guides No comments

My 1st full-day Santiago Island tour was a great way to start my West African journey in the beautiful country of Cape Verde!

Continuing my journey around the world, I started traveling again after months of taking a break. This time, I’m in West Africa! Just a heads up, applying for an African visa is quite difficult and complicated for Filipinos, but you know me, this won’t stop me!

My country 174th – Cape Verde! Starting my African trip in Cape Verde, I was blown away by the way people treated me! Everything is memorable and I’m gonna share with you all my experiences and why this African country made a special place in my heart.

In my days of stay in Cape Verde, I felt so glad that Bu Country Tours hosted me. I stayed at Casa da Mizi where Mama Maria took care of me, gave me clothes and toiletries when I didn’t have any. It felt as if I was treated like a baby. 

A Full day Santiago Island Tour Experience with Bu Country Tours

Bu Country Tours – Full-day Santiago Island Tour

On my first few days in Cape Verde, I was hosted by Bu Country Tours as they let me experience one of the popular tourist destinations in the country – Santiago Island. 

This full day Santiago Island tour didn’t only allow me to see what the island has to offer, but I was also able to experience a workshop with a local family. Yes! I learned how to cook Cuscuz, a popular Cape Verde dish. 

Highlights of my Santiago Island Tour

Can’t hide my excitement when I started the tour, my photos will be the proof! More of my adventure below.


My tour started by learning the recipe of the popular dish Cuscuz, with a local family who treated me like their own. If you are in Cape Verde, this is something you shouldn’t miss. One of the best experiences I have while traveling is having to eat local dishes, but this time, I got to cook them!


When we visited Assomada, we went to the famous Assomada Market. The market offers lots of different items and souvenirs to choose from.

You’ll find clothing, shoes, and food stalls offering meat, vegetables, fish, herbs, etc. I literally can’t stop looking from left to right. Haha!

Serra de Malagueta

If you’re into hiking, this is one of the best parts of doing the Santiago Island tour! We drove to the Natural Park and got to see stunning views.

I also learned a lot about the people who live there. If you want to hike, here’s a tip, it has 1100 mn elevation so prepare a jacket as it can get cold up there.

Tarrafal Beach

After an exciting ride, we headed to Tarrafal Beach, the most beautiful beach in Santiago. The white sand, the beautiful ocean, and the sound of the waves, the beach is the perfect place to relax after a tiring hike. You can do snorkeling as there are plenty of fish to see! Moreover, there are also nearby restaurants where we had our lunch.


A Full day Santiago Island Tour Experience with Bu Country Tours

To end our day tour, we visited Rabelados, a community that preserves Cape Verde’s oldest customs. This part of the tour is so close to my heart. I got to talk to the locals, understand their story, their habits, and a lot more.

My interaction with them was eye opening, you’ll get to know more about the other side of the world that not everyone gets to see. I was so lucky indeed!


We ended our 1st day tour with lots of knowledge and amazing experiences that left me in awe.

A Full day Santiago Island Tour Experience with Bu Country Tours

One day was not enough to spend time with the locals, to talk to them, to laugh with them, their hospitality and friendliness is the first thing you should expect when you’re visiting the island. 

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Written by Kach Umandap

Founder of Two Monkeys Travel Group. Since 2013, Kach has visited all the 7 continents (including Antarctica) and 151 countries using her Philippines Passport. In 2016, she bought a sailboat and went on sailing adventures with her two cats - Captain Ahab & Little Zissou in the Caribbean for 2 years. She now lives in Herceg Novi, Montenegro where she's enjoying her expat life and living on a gorgeous Stonehouse. She writes about her experiences traveling as a Filipina traveler with a PHL Passport. Also tips on backpacking trips, luxury hotel experiences, product reviews, sailing & adventure travel.