With a name that translates into ‘Face Mountain’, this rocky formation is the ex-libris of the island of Sao Vicente, and particularly of its main city Mindelo.
This regard, however, does not stem from any particular instance of natural beauty – while its hike-friendly 490m slopes and views of neighbouring Santo Antao may interest hiking enthusiasts walking in Cape Verde, the majority of the mountain consists of arid, jagged cliffs of hazelnut brown rock. Rather, Monte Cara’s fame, as well as its name, comes from its natural shape – when seen from afar, the top of the mountain perfectly resembles a human face lying prone and staring up at the sky. Unlike with Colorado’s Mount Rushmore, however, this shape is entirely natural – the result of erosion rather than of any type of human intervention – which makes the likeness even more admirable.
Geographically, Monte Cara is situated in Northeastern Cape Verde, between Mindelo, Porto Grande (to the west) and Lazareto (to the east). Its surrounding regions offer plenty of beaches and quaint little villages, while nearby Baía das Gatas (Bay of Sharks) and Porto Alegre bay allow sailing enthusiasts to freely indulge in their pastime. The former also annually hosts the islands’ biggest music festival, offering more than enough reasons for trekkers walking in Cape Verde to head to Sao Vicente!