SANTA LUZIA, is the only island of Cape Verde that is not inhabited, belongs to the Barlavento (Windward) group and was declared a natural reserve in 1990. In Calhau, on the east coast of the neighboring island of São Vicente, you can hire a fisherman who will take you to Santa Luzia, round trip on the same day (maximum 6 people) for a fee. The crossing takes about two hours.
Santa Luzia island is only 35 km² in area, with a maximum altitude of 395 meters, spanning 13km in length by 5km wide. The vegetation is very scarce, but despite this, the island has remarkable topographical contrasts between the south coast, with beaches and dunes, while the north coast is more rugged.
Between Santa Luzia and its other neighbor island of São Nicolau, are located the islets of Raso (7 km²) and Branco (3 km²), serving as a refuge for a number of rare sea birds.
Due to its very dry climate and lack of constant water, the island of Santa Luzia has never been persistently colonized, except during the XIX century, when it was inhabited by a small community of about 20 people who were dedicated mostly to cattle herding and fishing.