Museu do Mar


Inside the Torre de Belém, Mindelo's most intriguing museum gives an overview of São Vicente's history, from the island's role in the triangular trade to whaling in the late 19th century. Displays from shipwrecks reveal intriguing finds like 200-year-old bottles of port wine (still sealed) and massive elephant tusks (a jaw-dropping 820 tusks were logged on the 1743 wreck of the Princess Louisa).

Take the spiral staircase from the top floor to open-air views over sea and mountains.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Mindelo attractions

1. Torre de Belém

Jutting out into the harbour is the fortresslike Torre de Belém – a Disney World version of the 15th-century tower that guards Lisbon's port.

2. Fish Market

0.02 MILES

The city's photogenic fish market lies just beyond Torre de Belém, with a jetty right behind it where fishermen unload their daily catch.

3. Pont d'Agua

0.13 MILES

With its modern glass and concrete constructions, this swank new complex looks and feels more like the south of France than Cabo Verde. Dotted with palm…

4. Town Hall

0.16 MILES

Mindelo's photogenic câmara municipal (town hall) dates from the mid-19th century.

5. Mercado Municipal

0.19 MILES

The restored two-storey food market from 1784 is a great place to see sweet-talking vendors hawking local produce and medicinal herbs.

6. Centro Cultural do Mindelo

0.19 MILES

Inside the old customs house, the cultural centre houses changing exhibitions of local arts and culture and has a tiny shop selling local crafts, music…

7. Palácio do Povo

0.24 MILES

This cheery pink colonial confection and former government building today hosts changing exhibitions. Currently, its rooms are given over to a long…

8. Mt Verde

3.92 MILES

For panoramic views of Mindelo, all of São Vicente as well as Santo Antão and Santa Luzia, hike up to São Vicente's highest peak (750m) on a clear day.