Luxury beach trips and island breaks

São Tomé and Príncipe

São Tomé and Príncipe

West Africa's chocolate islands

Sitting off the coast of West Africa in the Gulf of Guinea, São Tomé and Príncipe is a small tropical island nation visited by just a handful of travellers each year.

On São Tomé, the larger of the two islands, find the diminutive capital. Founded by the Portuguese in the 15th century as one of Africa’s first colonial cities, it was a hub for the sugar and slave trade. Today it is a charmingly faded and colourful port town trading chocolate where you’ll be warmly welcomed.

Both islands were formed by volcanoes that dominate the landscape. Pico de São Tomé rises 2000m above the ocean, its lower slopes clad in coffee and cocoa plantations turning to misty rainforests, while on the smaller Príncipe rock towers such as the mighty Cão Grande stick straight out of the canopy. Both uninhabited until their discovery by the Portuguese, and never a part of the African continent, their forests are home to fascinating endemic life with rare orchids, bird species and amphibians found nowhere else. All encircled by a dramatic coastline of empty palm-lined beaches, tiny fishing villages and clear waters where you can spot dolphins and spot whales.

Of the few places to stay in ‘STP’, our favourites are a joint venture that's as avidly committed to sustainability and community development as it is to show off the best of the islands.

What's the weather like?

When to visit São Tomé and Príncipe

The most popular time to visit the islands is during one of their two dry seasons – June to September, and from mid-January to mid-February. August is the best for birders and hikers, plus a number of cultural events and saints’ days that bring the streets to life.
  • 29
    °C
    90
    MM
    Short dry season
    December - February
  • 29
    °C
    120
    MM
    Long rains
    March - May
  • 27
    °C
    10
    MM
    Long dry season
    June - September
  • 28
    °C
    105
    MM
    Short rains
    October - November

Example trips

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Browse our São Tomé and Príncipe example trips and get in contact to start planning your very own adventure.

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Why Niarra

Niarra Travel is a forward-thinking travel company headquartered in London born out of a passion to do things differently.

In Swahili, a Bantu language spoken by millions in Eastern, Central and Southern Africa, the name Niara means "with utmost purpose" and our team are united by a passion for exploration and a belief that the right kind of travel can make the world a better place.

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