Sao Tome

The island of Sao Tome is diverse and overwhelmingly beautiful, with a dense tangle of tropical rainforest and dazzling, empty sandy beaches.

The lush and spectacular forest is home to around 900 species of plants, of which 130 are found nowhere else. Sao Tome and Principe combined have more endemic bird species per square kilometre than the Galapagos, and they are also blessed with the highest density of endemic (found nowhere else) birds worldwide. The surrounding ocean, the Gulf of Guinea, is one of the world’s hotspots of marine diversity, and the island’s beaches are vital breeding grounds for the biggest range of sea turtles in central Africa. Rainforest covers about 90% of the island.

Sao Tome covers half the area of Greater London and yet the island’s total population is just 2% of that of Greater London! The main city of Sao Tome has a tranquil, almost Caribbean vibe. Our fun friendly guides will connect past and present as they show you important landmarks and impressive colonial buildings dotted between bakeries, street vendors and colourful, lively markets.

The island’s Portuguese past can be seen across the island in the form of chocolate and coffee plantation estates (rocas). Nowadays these rocas are community owned and it’s fascinating to be led through the dirt streets where communities live, work and play amongst the plantations, rainforest and grand Portuguese architecture. The rocas of Sao Tome and Principe still produce the best chocolate in the world… you’ll taste it of course. The plantations are fascinating to explore, and you can even stay the night within them.

Nowadays the island is opening up for tourism and we’ve a selection of the most wonderful places to stay during your time on this lesser-visited paradise.

With so much to discover, our tailor-made holidays to Sao Tome are carefully designed to suit your pace of travel and interests. As we plan your holiday with you, we’ll share our first hand knowledge of exploring the islands – so whether you enjoy history and culture, walking and cycling, diving, snorkelling and swimming, or boat trips and beaches, we’ll put together a holiday that’s just right for you.

Have a look at our Sao Tome holidays ideas for some inspiration, and get in touch to start planning your holiday adventure to these little-visited islands.