Ribeira Grande, Cape Verde

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Ribeira Grande
Street in Ribeira Grande
Street in Ribeira Grande
Ribeira Grande is located in Cape Verde
Ribeira Grande
Ribeira Grande
Coordinates: 17°10′59″N 25°03′54″W / 17.183°N 25.065°W / 17.183; -25.065Coordinates: 17°10′59″N 25°03′54″W / 17.183°N 25.065°W / 17.183; -25.065
Country Cape Verde
Island Santo Antão
Municipality Ribeira Grande
Civil parish Nossa Senhora do Rosário
Elevation 31 m (102 ft)
Population (2010)[1]
 • Total 2,564
Postal code 1110

Ribeira Grande is the largest town of the Ribeira Grande Municipality on the island of Santo Antão, Cape Verde and has recently become a city. Locally its inhabitants calls the town as Povoação or Tarrafal (sometimes as Tarrafal de Ribeira Grande). Its 2010 population was 2,564. Its elevation is 31 meters.[2] It is situated near the outflow of the river Ribeira Grande into the Atlantic Ocean along with Ribeira da Torre,[3] in the northeastern part of the island. Ribeira Grande serves as an intersection with roads connecting to Ponta do Sol, to the Cova Caldera near Pico da Cruz (Estrada da Corda) and Fontainhas with the north of the land and Paúl and Porto Novo along with the rest of the island (Estrada de Litoral) which opened in 2009.

Cove of Ribeira Grande in the mid 19th century


Neighborhoods include Tarrafal de Ribeira Grande (center), Rua d'Agua (or Rua da Agua), Rua d'Horta (Rua da Horta) and Penha de França.

About the city[edit]

The settlement was founded as around the late 16th century by people from the islands of Santiago and Fogo and some people from northern Portugal, it was founded by the Count of Santa Cruz as "Povoação", later, it became "Ribeyra Grande". A church was built not long after the settlement was founded in 1595. It later became a cathedral by Jacinto Valente in 1755 and named it Our Lady of Rosary (Nossa Senhora do Rosário).[4] The settlement was elevated to a town in 1732. The Middle Portuguese spelling remained in use until 1911 during the 1911 Orthography Reform made by Portugal which removed the y and became replaced with an i, it changed to its current form of Ribeira Grande.[5] In Cape Verdean Creole and its variant, it continued to be used until when Brazil changed theirs in 1931. The Santo Antão Creole spelling is "Rbèra Grande".

Its earlier buildings are built with Portuguese colonial architecture. The church of Nossa Senhora do Rosário is the parish church. The city also features a mini-mart and some lojas It also has a BCA bank and a post office.

The city also celebrated its festival known as Sete Sóis Sete Luas.

Notable people includes chemist Roberto Duarte Silva, poet Manuel de Novas, and José Luís de Jesus, former foreign minister and president of ITLOS (International Tribune of the Law of the Sea).


Year Population
1990 2,550
2005 2,950
2010 2,564[6]


Sporting clubs, largely football (soccer) include Beira Mar and Rosariense Clube, the other serves the whole parish.


  1. ^ "2010 Census results". Instituto Nacional de Estatística Cabo Verde (in Portuguese). 17 March 2014. 
  2. ^ Elevation at Elevation Map
  3. ^ "Nótula sobre Aspectos Recentes e Actuais da Erosão Fluvial na Ilha de Santo Antão" [Notes on Recent Aspects and River Erosion in the Island Today] (PDF) (in Portuguese). Finisterra - University of Lisbon. 
  4. ^ Petit-Futé Cap-Vert ('Small Smart Cape Verde), 2015, p. 184
  5. ^ "Relatório das Bases da Reforma Ortográfica" (PDF). Diário de Governo. 12 September 1911. 
  6. ^ "2010 Census results" (in Portuguese). Instituto Nacional de Estatística Cabo Verde. Archived from the original on 9 April 2014. Retrieved 17 March 2014. 

Further reading[edit]

  • Carlos Ferrão, Estudos sobre a Ilha de Santo Antão (Studies on the Island of Santo Antão), Imprensa Nacional, Lisbonne, 1898, 116 pages (in Portuguese)

External link[edit]