01-Oct-2002 -- On our way from Uruguay to Antwerp (Belgium) today we passed the Canal de São Vicente, which separates Ilha de Santo Antão from Ilha de São Vicente. It is 12 km wide, deep, clear of dangers and there is a Confluence. The tidal streams, however, in Canal de São Vicente are strong.
Ilha de Santo Antão, the NW-most island in the Arquipélago de Cabo Verde and in the Barlavento/Windward Group, is very high and visible from a great distance. The highest point of the island, Tope de Coroa, reaches 1,979 m (6,493 ft). The island is principally inhabited in the NE part. The capital of the island is Porto Novo. The climate is healthy, and the soil is the most productive of any in the archipelago.
Ilha de São Vicente is composed of mountains of volcanic origin, divided into two ranges by a valley. Monte Verde is the highest point and rises to an elevation of 750 m (2,461 ft). Apart from a little green tamarisk scrub, the island is barren. The climate is healthy, but water is scarce and there is little cultivation.
Cidade do Mindelo is the capital of São Vicente. It is an important bunkering station (i.e. a place where ships can conveniently refuel). Here we see a picture from Mindelo, in the background there are storage tanks for ship's fuel, in front Ilha dos Pássaros.
The map shows our transit route through the Canal de São Vicente.