Situated in the Atlantic Ocean, 460 km off the coast of Africa, Cape Verde is an archipelago nation formed of ten major islands and a number of smaller, uninhabited islets.
The majority of the islands feature both flat lowland plains and sharp, jagged mountains, reflecting the chain’s volcanic origins. Most of the islands have a very dry climate, but despite this the country is home to a wide variety of plant and animal species.
In particular, Cape Verde is recognised as a global hotspot for marine biodiversity, and supports a high diversity of emblematic and unique marine animals, including over 20 species of whale, dolphin and porpoise. Beaches on a number of islands provide globally important nesting areas for loggerhead turtles, and all five endangered sea turtle species forage in Cape Verdean coastal waters. More than 60 shark and ray species also frequent these waters along with myriad flamboyantly coloured fish.