01-May-2003 -- On our way from Recife to Königsberg/Kaliningrad the next confluence after
the Archipelago de Fernando de Noronha is in the Cape Verde Islands Archipelago.
This time we decided to proceed first to 15N 23W, which is
fairly close to Ilha do Maio.
The wind was quite strong (force Beaufort 6-7 from NNE) and the visibility
was rather limited. So we went a little closer to make some better pictures.
The North part of Ilha do Maio is low and mainly occupied by salt
pans which are surrounded by sand dunes. In the South thre are several peaks
amongst which is Monte Penoso, 435 m (1,430 ft) high and the
highest point of Ilha do Maio. The islands slopes gradually from these
central peaks to the South end.
The coasts of Ilha do Maio are, in general, low. The East coast is more
indented than the other ones.
The soil is for the most part dry and sterile. Salt, which is exported out
of the archipelago, is the only produce of importance. There are also two
limeworks and a fish canning factory.
Landing on Ilha do Maio is bad and impeded with swell. There is no regular
communication by sea. A small landing strip is suitable for light aircraft
Information about Ilha do Maio obtained partly from
Nautical Publication Nr. 1, Africa Pilot, Vol I, "The West Coast of Africa
from Cabo Espartel to Bakasi Peninsula", 13th ed. 1982 and Supplement 7th
ed. 1999, British Admiralty, Hydrographer of the Navy, Ministry of Defense,