Ian Coates

Please call me to discuss any aspect of your holiday. Always happy to help in any way.

Travel has always been a big part of my life and the mould was set on my first Cub Scout camp when I was 8 years old. Just 4 miles down the road, if felt like an epic journey into the unknown….and it was; with mid-night feasts, jungle treks and secret raids on islands fortresses! In my late teens, and before we all had the personal computer, I was organising trips around the UK and across Europe for groups of friends, using nothing more than a notepad and photocopier.

I grew up the great-grandson, grandson, and son of a butcher and life was pretty much mapped out before me. From the age of 14, I was working in my father’s butcher’s shop and there wasn’t much need for an education. But I always knew there was another world beyond this one and through books, magazines and Private Eye I found my escape. Throwing off the shackles of expectation I started to travel the world, initially for 6 months, then a year and then for 4 years.

The journey to Archipelago Choice has been full of challenges, danger, adventures, fun and stories to tell. I’m now married with two children and a company that at times feels like a third. Running your own business, for me, is one of life’s great pleasures. We have a fantastic team and a strong ethos to do the “right thing” by protecting the environment, creating inspiring jobs, looking after our clients and helping our friends and colleagues to prosper on their island Archipelagos.

You can go on holiday, or better still you can come on a journey with us.


Ian Coates
Destination Specialist
01768 721040

My favourite part of Cape Verde

The island of Boavista is the hottest and driest of all the islands in Cape Verde.

It’s just a short 20min flight from Sal, making it another attractive island if you like beaches, but prefer to avoid the crowds.

The island is the most affected by the hot harmattan winds from the Sahara, so it perfect for all kinds of great water sports opportunities near the capital Sal Rei. The interior on the other looks like a dry moon landscape with its desert-like landscapes. The white sandy beaches are stunning and are the third most important destination in the world for nesting loggerhead turtles.

Relax in a boutique coastal hideaway, or one of the larger all-inclusive hotels and explore this desert island by jeep. Humpback whales like Boavista too, as they have their young here and nurse them until they are strong enough to brave the Atlantic.

My favourite activity in Cape Verde

We offer fantastic Guided walking holidays in Cape Verde.

Most routes on our walks on the islands of Santiago, Fogo and Santo Antao are on cobbled paths that link the villages of the interior but some are on sand and cinder tracks.

Our daily guided walks vary in length from 2 to 6 hours and can be tailored to your needs, whether you’re a slow or fast walker, want to climb a volcano or prefer to walk along a coastal path. Our guided walking holidays suit everyone!

You will have a different Cape Verdean walking guide on each island. Most of them were born on the island and know all the paths like the back of their hand. They also have extensive knowledge of the local flora and fauna, and through them, you get to know a lot about the culture and customs of Cape Verde.

Being accompanied by a guide is like walking with a celebrity, they know most of the people they encounter during the hike and always have time for a little chat with the locals that cross your path.

It’s also a great opportunity to interact with the locals. Even if you don’t speak their language (Creole), a simple ‘Bom Dia’, shaking of hands, and a lot of smiling, is always much appreciated.

Our walking holidays (ideal in January, February and March) are without a doubt the best way to explore Cape Verde.

My favourite accommodation in Cape Verde

A long-time favourite of ours on the island of Sao Vicente is the popular Kira’s Boutique Hotel .

The beautiful Portuguese-era building was once the family home of the Spencer family, well-known in the archipelago, and nowadays this colourful boutique hotel is run by the lovely owner Isabelle Spencer.

Each of the eleven bedrooms is named after one of the Cape Verdean islands, with the eleventh one taking the name of the country itself. Great thought has been given to the decoration of each room, bestowing it with individual character. Opened in late 2013, Kira’s has an interior that is bright and modern and guests can benefit from room facilities such as a private bathroom, air conditioning, ceiling fan, TV, telephone, mini-fridge, internet and safe.

The house’s ambience is enhanced by the use of handsome traditional stone, elegant furniture, pot plants and artworks. There is ample outdoor space on the excellent roof terrace with sun lounger and shade, a great place to read a book, sunbathe or enjoy the views over the lively city.

It’s also near Mindelo’s main square Praca Amilcar Cabral and only a short stroll to most of Mindelo’s best restaurants, bars and music venues.


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