It is a magical place. Before the arrival of the Cabo Verde Fast Ferry which now provides daily service to the island, Brava and its 6,000 residents were virtually cut off from the rest of Cape Verde, and by extension, the rest of the world. It is no surprise then that going to Brava is like a journey back in time to a period when life was simpler, to a place where you walk along narrow, country lanes lined with beautiful flowers. You won't find airports, shopping malls or large hotels here.
The ferry gets in at night so you may not have time to explore the port town of Furna. It's actually more lively that the capital, so if you get here on a weekend, perhaps you can check out the local tavern before heading up to Nova Sintra. I stayed at the quaint inn, Pensão Castelo (Eugenia 238-982-5786) in Nova Sintra. The room was spartan but clean and inviting. I've also stayed at the Dja Braba Hotel (Marcos 238-979-4934) which is the largest and most modern hotel facility on the island, and also has the best restaurant. Either place is a good base from which to explore Nova Sintra and the rest of the island, like the picturesque fishing village of Fajã d'Agua.
|Picturesque Fajã d'Agua|
Be sure to visit the other side of the bay where there are natural pools between the steep cliffs. There's a well-maintained, safe path where you can walk down to the pools.
|Lota at the Coqueiro Bar|
Now, to get to Fajã d'Agua, you have to take a Hiace (minivan), a Hilux (open tray pickup) or one of the two taxis on the island. I chose to go by taxi - Gabi's taxi that is! He is a friendly chap and good company for the trip. You can contact him at 238-989-8347, especially if you miss the Hiaces from the port at Furna. I guarantee he won't be too far away at any given moment.
|Catia and Sofia - sisters meeting for the first time|
And if you aren't yet convinced about the magic of Brava ... just take a day to visit. But first, check out this short-film about the romantic traditions of Brava: it is called Serenata de Amor, a love story told in song.
Finally. don't miss the slideshow below ... see if you can spot Brava's magical cow.