Why is Príncipe so special?

Did you know that São Tomé and Príncipe have more endemic species per square kilometre than the Galapagos?

Primary rainforest, ‘obo’, covers much of the island of Principe and it’s part of the biodiversity hotspot of tropical forests in West Africa.  Not only a rich habitat for trees and plants, birds, bats and insects, the oceans surrounding it are a habitat of high international importance for sea turtles, sea birds and cetaceans as well as coral reefs.


It’s clearly a special place that significantly contributes to global biodiversity.  Your first thoughts are probably ‘I must go and see it!’  And then hopefully, ‘we must protect it, the planet needs these places!’

Príncipe has a population of around just 7,000 people and since independence from the Portuguese in 1975, the islanders have mainly lead subsistence livelihoods in agriculture and fishing, taking life day by day and having little formal employment.  Their impact on the biodiversity of the island has been minimal.

In 2012 Príncipe was designated a Biosphere Reserve by UNESCO and so it’s development, including tourism, is carefully managed under the Man and Biosphere Programme that (amongst other great things) aims to improve human livelihoods and sharing of benefits, and protect natural and managed ecosystems.  The islanders are proud of their biosphere status and it something that unites locals and visitors.

At Archipelago we believe that you, as visitors to the island, should be a benefit to the islands community and environment and you can find out ‘Sustainable Tourism to Principe‘ in our blog post.

How do I get there?

Holidays are very personal to each of us and planning a trip to somewhere less travelled requires good advice and careful planning.  For over 20 years the team at Archipelago Choice has travelled extensively to all the special destinations we offer and have unrivalled knowledge based on our own personal travel experiences.


Sao Tome and Principe are incredibly special islands to visit and if you think these islands are for you, then love to hear from you. For a friendly chat, please call 00 44 (0) 17687 721050 or email: info@archipelagochoice.com


If you’d like a free brochure then please click on the link –   São Tomé holiday brochure


Emma O’Rouke