Praia is the beautiful capital city of Cape Verde on the west coast of Africa. It has picturesque beaches, amazing wildlife, great nightlife – and more besides! Here are some fun facts about Praia to clue up on.
1. What does ‘Praia’ mean?
The word ‘Praia’ is Portuguese and means ‘beach’.
2. How many people live in Praia?
The population of Praia in 2017 was 152,000.
3. It’s a multi-lingual city.
The main language spoken in Praia is Portuguese. Others include English, French, German, Spanish, and Creole.
4. It’s also highly educated.
Praia is home to five of Cape Verde’s nine universities – amazing!
5. UNESCO recognizes Praia, too.
Cidade Velha is a UNESCO World Heritage Site that attracts historians from all over the world. Famous for being the center of the slave trade, it is also said to be where the Portuguese nation first started.
6. Just say the word!
Praia may look hard to pronounce, but it’s not. You simply say ‘pry-ah’.
7. It’s bigger than you think.
Praia is famously large as a capital city – it’s around twice the size of Liverpool, England.
8. However, it’s not absolutely packed.
What’s really curious is that Praia is only a third as dense as Liverpool – making the area rather sparse.
9. You’re never too far off the ocean.
Praia is fairly close to the sea all around – it is only 85 feet above sea level!
10. Praia is truly rich in history.
Praia has a fantastic Old Town that showcases an array of houses and buildings from decades and even centuries ago. Wonderful for history fans!
11. Be sure to count the pennies.
If you want to be able to spend money in Praia, you will need to exchange your dollars and pounds for the Cape Verdean Escudo. Now you know!
12. Plan that vacation now!
Cape Verde is, much like Praia itself, subject to two main seasons of weather. Visiting the capital city, you will normally find that there is a very long season of dry weather – the rainy season really doesn’t last that long at all.
13. Loggerheads as far as the eye can see!
Praia is famous amongst wildlife fans as it’s often a brilliant place to spot sea turtles. You will often see loggerhead turtles swimming around the area.
14. What is Santiago Island?
Praia is technically based on a patch of land in Cape Verde known as Santiago island – it’s truly magnificent up close!
15. Head here on July 5th!
Praia is often the place to be on July 5th – as this is when Cape Verde celebrates its Independence Day from Portugal. Oddly enough, the day after the US independence celebrations!
16. It’s the main stage in Cape Verde.
Praia is very important to Cape Verde on the whole, and not just because it is the capital city. It’s the main stage for the country’s government, and it also tends to be where the main business decisions are made, too.
17. Praia has produced some soccer superstars!
Several famous soccer stars were born in Praia – including Gelson Martins, Nani, and Vinha.
18. It’s a young person’s paradise.
Praia is a very young city – the median age of all residents here is just under 28 years old.
FAQs about Praia
What is Praia best known for?
Praia is probably best known for its amazing coastline and its history, fantastic for anyone interested in ancient Portuguese culture!
Is Praia safe to visit?
On the whole, yes. However, as always, be very careful if you have any jewelry or items that could attract pickpockets.
Is it easy to get to Praia?
Yes - in fact, you can travel straight there via plane if you head out from Lisbon Airport.
Do you know any fun facts about Praia? Share them in the comments section below!