Featured Destination

Oosterschelde: A Tropical Adventure

Island Hopping – Far From the Beaten Path

If you’re yearning to explore tropical islands (and who isn’t!) a voyage aboard the1917 Dutch Topsail Schooner, Oosterschelde around the stunning Cape Verde archipelago could be the adventure for you! The voyage offers a mix of hands-on sailing and island exploration.

The crew of Oosterschelde know the islands well. They spend much of the winter and spring exploring there. We think Cape Verde is as good as the Caribbean! But without as much mainstream tourism once you leave Sal. The islands offer everything from quiet secluded beaches to Jeep safaris! So there is something for everyone on these unforgettable trips.

What might this trip look like?*

Embarking from Palmeira, on the island of Sal, you’ll pick up the trade winds and head south to Santiago. Santiago is renowned for its friendly locals and stunning hikes. With a whole day & night to explore, you can really stretch your legs before the next phase of the trip.

You join the night watch as you head northwest towards islands São Vicente & Santo Antão. Keep a lookout for sea turtles, sharks and whales along the way! If it’s clear you may even see the active volcano, Fogo to the south! You’ll anchor in Mindelo bay, before going ashore to explore the second largest city in Cape Verde. Take in the sights, scents and sounds as you wander through the streets, indoor market and cafés.

In contrast to the bustling city, next you’ll visit the green and fertile Santo Antão island, considered to be the most beautiful island of the archipelago. Take a hike through the lush & diverse landscape and enjoy breath-taking views you’ll never forget.

A short southeast hop gets you to the peaceful village of Tarrafal on the island of São Nicolau. You’ll be welcomed by local fishermen in their traditional sailing boats as you drop anchor just in front of the harbour. There is barely any tourism here, but you can visit the last remainders of a primaeval forest in the Monte Gordo national park for a hike. You could even get a tour of the local distillery (if it’s open) and sample their produce!

Continuing southeast you come to Boa Vista, well known for its beautiful beaches and its remarkable moving sand dunes! Here you’ll take an exhilarating 4×4 Jeep tour around the island while learning about the wildlife, its history, and its turtle protection program. See the the great work being done by the Turtle Foundation

From here it’s a short hop north back to Sal. If you have time after you depart the ship, have a walk through the colourful town and sample the local food. You could even go kiteboarding on the beach! (*Subject to weather & conditions)

Meet the Ship

Recognised as a ‘National Historic Monument’ in the Netherlands, Oosterschelde is the last of over 500 Dutch three-masted Topsail Schooners that carried cargo at the beginning of the 1900’s . If you want an example of sail power, Oosterschelde is the real thing.

Oosterschelde’s sleek lines and huge 9,590 sq ft sail area has taken her around the world twice including a rounding of Cape Horn purely under sail in 2013. She has been as far afield as the Arctic, Japan and Antarctica and loves to explore warm places such as Cape Verde, the Caribbean and Brazil.

Oosterschelde has the most spacious and elegant living space of the Classic Sailing fleet. The ship’s historic cargo hold has been converted into a stunning bar and dining room complete with piano! She has a well stocked library and comfortable saloon and the guest accommodation is quiet and comfortable.

The majority of Oosterschelde’s 2 and 4 person cabins are aft of the main saloon. There are showers and toilets in the corridor just outside the cabins. There are also two 2 person cabins either side of the main companionway stairs with showers and toilets just outside in the corridor. Each cabin has a washbasin with hot and cold running water and a skylight which can be opened in all but the roughest weather. The beds are all bunks and bed linen is all provided. See our “what to pack” guide here.

Don’t Just Take Our Word For It

Have a look at what other have said about this trip:

Together with my husband Bert we were on the trip around the Cape Verde on the Oosterschelde and had a great time. The crew was fantastic and very friendly. They showed us what has to be done to sail a beautiful ship like this. Made some new friends among the passengers and it was a trip I will not forget for a long while. And who knows when we will meet again. Thanks”


I’ve just completed my fourth voyage in four years and it was like a big family holiday! Familiar faces welcomed us aboard, we met up with guests and friends from previous voyages and the islands that we visited in the French West Indies were beautiful…We are just about to book our next voyage


We enjoy the technicalities of sailing a large vessel and the passage planning involved. We generally enjoy off-shore sailing. The skipper and crew were very friendly, helpful and informative. Accommodation and food was very good


Where Can I Sail Aboard?

Oosterschelde sails with a professional crew of up to 7 and can take up to 24 guests anywhere in the world. If you want adventure, sightseeing, wildlife watching and blue water sailing visit Cape Verde onboard Oosterschelde this spring:

Explore Cape Verde aboard Oosterschelde

Marketing Assistant, Tall Ship Sailor & Co-Host of the Off Watch Podcast

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