Top 10 Restaurants in Santa Maria, Cabo Verde
Welcome to Santa Maria, Cape Verde! This African city, known for its fishing and tourism, is home to a variety of attractions, including the stunning Church of Nossa Senhora das Dores. But today, we're taking you on a culinary journey to explore the best restaurants in town. From casual cafes to romantic spots, there's something for everyone on this list. Whether you're a vegan, a seafood lover, or just looking for a memorable dining experience, we've got you covered. Join us as we discover the 10 best restaurants in Santa Maria, Cape Verde.
1. Restaurante Odjo d’Àgua: A Culinary Paradise at Cape Verde’s Santa Maria Beach
If you’re searching for a place to enjoy a delicious meal with a breathtaking view of the ocean, Restaurante Odjo d’Àgua should be at the top of your list. Located at the end of Santa Maria beach, this restaurant is considered one of the best dining options in Cape Verde. The restaurant boasts four dining areas, each offering a unique experience that will make your visit unforgettable.
The menu at Restaurante Odjo d’Àgua is diverse, but some dishes are more popular than others. The tuna tartar and tuna curry are favorites among regulars and newcomers alike. The restaurant specializes in fresh fish and national dishes such as cachupa, a flavorful stew made with beans, corn, and meat or fish. Whether you’re in the mood for seafood, meat, or vegetarian dishes, Restaurante Odjo d’Àgua has something for everyone.
But it’s not just the food that makes Restaurante Odjo d’Àgua so special. The restaurant’s location at the end of Santa Maria beach provides a stunning view of the ocean and the beach. The large and airy space of the restaurant is an ideal place for you, your family, and your friends to enjoy a meal together. You can choose to dine at one of the four areas of the restaurant, each with a unique atmosphere.
Farolin is the area of the restaurant where you’ll find fresh fish and national dishes. Esplanada Palha Verde is the perfect spot for pre-meal aperitifs, while Esplanada Porton di nos Ilha is more of a lounge area for after-dinner drinks. Sambinha is the area where you can indulge in tropical juices, snacks, and ice cream.
If you’re a seafood lover, Restaurante Odjo d’Àgua won’t disappoint. The grilled octopus and lobsters are some of the best you’ll find in Cape Verde, and the prices are surprisingly affordable. Whether you’re looking for a romantic dinner for two or a family meal, Restaurante Odjo d’Àgua is the perfect spot.
In conclusion, Restaurante Odjo d’Àgua is a culinary paradise that should not be missed during your visit to Cape Verde. With its stunning location, diverse menu, and four dining areas, you’re sure to have an unforgettable dining experience. Come and enjoy the best of Portuguese cuisine and seafood in this beautiful restaurant.
2. Ocean Cafe: The Best Place for Entertainment, Food, and Fun!
Located in front of the main square of Santa Maria, Island of Sal, Ocean Cafe has become a reference in Cape Verde and worldwide for its high-quality standards in entertainment, food, drinks, and fun. This cafe is a must-visit for anyone who loves live music and wants to enjoy great food in a fun and lively atmosphere.
The cafe is just a few meters away from one of the 25 loveliest beaches in the world, the Santa Maria beach. The view from the cafe is breathtaking, and the sound of the waves adds to the overall ambiance of the place. The cafe has a small open bar next door where you can have your breakfast, enjoy beer, and snacks from early morning until late at night.
The menu at Ocean Cafe is vast and diverse, with options for breakfast, lunch, snack, dinner, and even sushi. The breakfast menu includes options like Cabo Verde, which comes with fresh goat cheese, catchupa with egg, and cake of the day. The Mediterrane is another delicious option that includes fruit jelly/flower honey, chocolate, ham, cheese, olives, tomato, churros, lettuce, and herbs. You can also create your own breakfast with four options like ham and cheese toast, scrambled eggs, pancakes and honey, yogurt, fried eggs, bacon, cereal, and cake of the day.
For lunch, Ocean Cafe offers special price dishes of the day, which come with a soda or beer. You can also enjoy a variety of burgers, spaghetti, beef steak with vegetables, meat lasagna, lasagna with vegetables, tuna or serra fish grilled with vegetables and polenta, and grilled chicken breast with vegetables.
The snack menu is perfect for those who want to munch on something light while enjoying the live music. The options include french fries, fried onion rings, fried olives stuffed with meat or tuna, Ocean cheese fries, spring roll and vegetarian gyozas, fried calamari, and X-treme nachos.
Dinner at Ocean Cafe is a delight with options like the Board of Mixed Meat with Grilled Vegetables and Polenta, the Board of Fried Seafood, the Board of Grilled Fish, Seafood and Vegetables, the Board of Sausages, Cheeses, Bread, and Breadstick, the Board of Vegan Delight, and the Board of Oriental Rice with Bacon. You can also enjoy a combo sushi with 12, 24, or 36 units.
If you are a pizza lover, the Family Pizza made with your three favorite ingredients is a must-try. The chefs at Ocean Cafe prepare every dish with love and passion to ensure that you have the best culinary experience possible.
In conclusion, Ocean Cafe is the best place to enjoy live music, great food, drinks, and fun in Cape Verde. The cafe's high-quality standards in entertainment, food, and drinks make it a reference point for tourists and locals alike. The ambiance of the cafe, along with its breathtaking view and delicious food, makes it an ideal destination for a perfect evening out.
3. Chez Pastis High-End Restaurant
Located in Santa Maria, Chez Pastis is a high-end restaurant known for its unique location, quirky ambiance, and excellent food and service. The restaurant takes pride in serving only the highest quality Brazilian beef, which is the highlight of its menu that also includes local specialties and seafood.
One of the standout starters on the menu is the smoked fish carpaccio, which is made in-house with the restaurant's own equipment and selected aromas. It is served with capers and a citronette sauce made from extra virgin olive oil and lemon juice. Another must-try dish is the homemade cheesy flower pasta, filled with goat homemade ricotta and green olives.
The restaurant is also famous for its Brazilian sublime filet mignon, which is perfectly cooked on sight on the kitchen grill and accompanied by a selection of sauces to choose from. The menu is complemented by a selection of white, rosé, and red wines from Cabo Verde, Portugal, and Italy.
Apart from the food, the restaurant's ambiance is also worth mentioning. It has a unique location and a quirky ambiance that adds to the overall dining experience. The staff is friendly and knowledgeable about the menu, making the dining experience all the more enjoyable.
To top it all off, the restaurant offers a special show that you should not miss before leaving. Ask the staff to prepare you a "Sambuca Tchaka Tchaka," and you will be treated to a nice show that will end your experience at Chez Pastis.
In conclusion, if you are looking for a high-end restaurant in Santa Maria, Chez Pastis is definitely worth a visit. With its excellent food, unique location, and quirky ambiance, it offers a dining experience that is sure to impress.
4. Américos Steak House
If you're looking for a great value meal with a light and airy atmosphere, Americos is the perfect restaurant to visit. Located on the pedestrianised street of Santa Maria, this steakhouse is known for its great service and friendly staff, and offers something for everyone.
One of the most popular dishes at Americos is Cataplana, a southern Portuguese specialty made primarily of seafood. However, if seafood is not your thing, there are many other options to choose from. Starters include barnacles, shrimp, octopus salad, tuna salad, carpaccio, fresh goat cheese and more. For main courses, you can choose from a variety of fish and seafood dishes such as grilled tuna and serra (wahoo), lobster, squids, octopus, cuttlefish, prawns, and more. Meat and poultry options include steaks, stews, barbecue, pork and lamb chops, sausage, and rodizio of grilled meat. And for those who love sushi, there's a great selection of temakis and rolls.
Save some room for dessert, because Americos offers a variety of delicious puddings, papaya jam with goat cheese, ice cream, and fresh fruit. To accompany your meal, the bar at Americos offers excellent wine suggestions and a boldness in the preparation of cocktails, caipirinha, sangria, and others combined. Make sure to try the brandy and liqueurs of the most varied flavors of Cape Verde.
On weekends, Americos offers live music with local artists who sing and enchant with their mornas, coladeiras, and funana. Whether you're looking for a romantic evening for two, a family lunch out, or to dance the night away, Americos has something for everyone in Santa Maria.
5. Casa da Cultura Funaná - True Cape Verdiane Cusine
Casa da Cultura Funaná restaurant is an experience like no other. Located in Cape Verde, it not only offers a delicious range of food, but also doubles as a museum, where you can learn about the history and traditions of the islands.
The restaurant has been awarded the label of "living museum" and it's not hard to see why. With reproductions of emblematic houses, places and sculptures, you can take a guided tour and discover the Cape Verdeans in their daily life occupations, including working the land, grinding with a pestle, and more.
As you explore the museum, you can also sample some of the finest aguardientes, liqueurs or fidjós (fritters) with honey or sugar.
But that's not all - on "Crazy Thursdays", Funana Casa da Cultura transforms into a party paradise with lively music that will have you dancing the night away from 11 pm to the early hours of the morning. Plus, visitors receive a welcome drink upon arrival to kickstart their night.
Of course, the food at Casa da Cultura Funaná is not to be missed. It is the most typical restaurant on the island and has a delicious range of dishes on offer. From fresh seafood like grilled tuna and serra (wahoo), grouper, dourada, carapau, linguado, to typical Cape Verdean dishes like cachupa, feijoada, modje de São Nicolau with papa or xeren and seafood rice.
Starters include barnacles, shrimp, octopus salad, tuna salad, carpaccio, and fresh goat cheese. Meat-lovers can enjoy steaks, stews, barbecue, pork and lamb chops, sausage, and rodizio of grilled meat. Sushi, Temakis of various flavors and fillings are also available.
Finally, dessert lovers won't be disappointed with the delicious puddings, papaya jam with goat cheese, ice cream, and fresh fruit on the menu.
Overall, Casa da Cultura Funaná is a must-visit for anyone looking for a unique and immersive dining experience in Cape Verde.
6. Tam Tam European Style Cafe
Tam Tam Cafe is a popular spot located in the heart of Santa Maria, Cape Verde. It is known for being the hub of the town and frequented by many nationalities, giving it an international flavor and a unique ambiance that can be enjoyed by everyone.
Whether you are looking for a tasty breakfast, lunch, or evening meal, Tam Tam Cafe has something to satisfy everyone's taste buds. Their European-style menu is not only great value, but it is also guaranteed to have something for the entire family.
Their famous Irish Coffees, Caipirinhas, and Cappuccinos are not to be missed, and you can enjoy them while people watching in a relaxed and cozy atmosphere. The cafe is perfect for those looking for a laid-back experience with a touch of excitement.
If you are a sports fan, you will love the live screening of Premier League and other major sporting events in English. Come down on match day and support your favorite team while sharing a few beers with friends.
One of the standout dishes at Tam Tam Cafe is their huge and bold hamburgers. These juicy, flavorful burgers are 100% recommended by locals and visitors alike.
In addition to great food and drinks, Tam Tam Cafe has a friendly staff that is always ready to assist you. Whether you are a regular or a first-time visitor, you will be welcomed with open arms.
Overall, Tam Tam Cafe is a must-visit spot for anyone looking for a great atmosphere, delicious food, and friendly service in Santa Maria.
7. Zum Fisherman Restaurant: A Seafood Lover's Paradise
Nestled on the outskirts of Santa Maria town, Zum Fisherman Restaurant is a must-visit for those who crave delicious seafood. As you walk towards the restaurant, you will be welcomed by the sight of the owner displaying the daily catch of fresh fish, inviting you to make your selection.
The restaurant boasts both indoor and outdoor seating, giving you the freedom to choose the perfect setting for your dining experience. Whether you prefer a cozy indoor ambiance or a breezy outdoor setting, Zum Fisherman Restaurant caters to your every need.
The restaurant offers a wide range of cuisines, including seafood, European, bar, international, pub, and wine bar. However, it's the seafood that takes center stage here, and the owner takes pride in serving the freshest catch available.
The friendly staff at Zum Fisherman Restaurant recommends a mix of fresh fish, depending on what's available on the day of your visit. This is a great choice, as it offers the opportunity to try different types of seafood in one meal.
One of the standout dishes at Zum Fisherman Restaurant is the prawns. These juicy and gigantic prawns are cooked to perfection, providing a unique flavor that is hard to come by. The tuna steak and grouper from the grill are also highly recommended and are sure to tantalize your taste buds.
The restaurant offers a real variety of flavors, cooked to perfection, making it a seafood lover's paradise. The ambiance at Zum Fisherman Restaurant is relaxed and welcoming, making it the perfect place to unwind and savor your meal.
If you're visiting Santa Maria and looking for a dining experience that is both unique and memorable, Zum Fisherman Restaurant should be at the top of your list.
8. Barracuda - Classic Cape Verdean Restaurant
If you're looking for a classic Cape Verdean restaurant with a beautiful beachfront setting, Barracuda Restaurant is the place to be. Located on Santa Maria Beach, Barracuda offers a variety of delicious seafood and pork dishes that are sure to please. While vegetarian options are limited, the atmosphere and view make it an ideal spot for an evening drink.
The menu at Barracuda is based on top-quality fresh local produce, with an emphasis on Cape Verdean seafood such as tuna, lobster, and a variety of fish. The cuisine is simple and natural, highlighting the quality of the ingredients with subtle details. Don't miss the chance to try the tuna carpaccio or the delicious tartar, the fried Fogo cheese, and the spectacular rice with lobster and seafood. The menu also features European dishes like Spanish paella and Italian pasta alongside Cape Verdean specialties like kid cooked São Nicolau style and roast suckling pig.
Barracuda's beachside location provides a stunning backdrop for your dining experience. Whether you choose to dine at the beachside tables or in the large dining room, the staff provides efficient, fast service, allowing you to enjoy the great music and fantastic views of Santa Maria Beach. The atmosphere is friendly, and the staff strives to give visitors a warm, welcoming experience.
Many visitors have found that Barracuda provides some of the best food in Cape Verde. The prawns are gigantic and juicy, accompanied by tuna steak and grouper from the grill, offering a real variety of flavors cooked to perfection. The staff is attentive, and the service is excellent, making this the ideal spot for a romantic dinner or a meal with friends and family.
In summary, Barracuda Restaurant offers top-quality seafood and pork dishes in a stunning beachfront setting. While the vegetarian options may be limited, the quality of the food and the welcoming atmosphere make this restaurant a must-visit during your stay in Cape Verde.
9. Sal Beach Club British Restaurant
Located on the beautiful beach of Santa Maria, Sal Beach Club Restaurant is a must-visit destination for those looking to enjoy delicious food, refreshing drinks, and a laid-back beach atmosphere. This establishment offers quick lunches, comfort food, and great snacks throughout the day, while also serving western-style breakfasts to cater to all tastes. In addition, the Sal Beach Club doubles as a sports bar and has six large TVs with surround sound, where major live sports events are regularly screened.
The Sal Beach Club is an ideal place for sports fans who want to watch their favorite games even while on holiday. The friendly management team is happy to accommodate special requests for any sporting events, so you never have to miss a game.
At night, the place transforms into a lively venue with food, music, and parties that are perfect for those looking for a fun night out. The restaurant has three on-site rooms and one apartment next door that can be rented for the duration of your stay. All rooms are only seconds away from the beach, allowing you to soak up the sun and enjoy the ocean breeze.
The menu at Sal Beach Club features a wide selection of delicious dishes, including fish and chips, Sunday roast, and a special Thai menu available in the evenings. All main courses come with a free homemade dessert during February and March. The establishment also offers great food and drink deals every weekend, making it a perfect destination for those on a budget.
The atmosphere at Sal Beach Club is relaxed and friendly, with attentive staff who aim to make your experience enjoyable and memorable. Whether you are looking to grab a quick bite, watch a game, or party the night away, Sal Beach Club has something to offer for everyone. With its unbeatable beachside location and delicious food, Sal Beach Club is undoubtedly one of the best restaurants in Cabo Verde.
10. Art Kafé: Where Mama's Cooking Meets Cape Verdean Culture
Art Kafé is one of the newest and most exciting restaurants to open up in Santa Maria, Sal, Cape Verde. It is located on Rua Praia Antonio Sousa, across from the Old Russio Hotel that is now owned by Tui. The restaurant is a perfect blend of food and art, where visitors can indulge in delicious food and drinks while immersing themselves in the culture and tradition of Cape Verde.
The atmosphere of Art Kafé is very friendly and welcoming, with great service that makes visitors feel at home. Whether you're looking for a quick bite to eat or a full meal, Art Kafé has got you covered. They are open from 9am to midnight, offering plenty of time to enjoy their offerings.
The menu at Art Kafé features healthy food that is sure to delight your taste buds. They pride themselves on cooking like your mama, meaning that their dishes are prepared with the same care and attention to detail that a mother would put into cooking for her family. Whether you're in the mood for something savory or sweet, Art Kafé has got something for you.
In addition to the delicious food, Art Kafé offers visitors the chance to learn about the culture and tradition of Cape Verde. They are passionate about sharing their heritage with visitors, and aim to create an immersive experience that leaves a lasting impression.
For those who prefer to dine at home, Art Kafé offers kerbside pickup, making it easy and convenient to enjoy their food from the comfort of your own home. Overall, Art Kafé is a must-visit for anyone looking to experience the best that Santa Maria has to offer.
Discover the Best Hidden Gems of Santa Maria: Join Our Epic Gastro-Tour with a Top Guide!
Embark on a fascinating gastro-tour of Santa Maria's top 10 restaurants with a highly qualified guide. Explore the vibrant food scene of this picturesque town, and discover the best culinary experiences it has to offer. Whether you are a seafood lover, a meat enthusiast, or a vegetarian, there is something for everyone on this tour.
Your guide will take you to the finest dining establishments in Santa Maria, where you will sample a diverse range of dishes that represent the rich cultural heritage of Cape Verde. From traditional Cape Verdean seafood dishes to fusion cuisine, you will have the opportunity to taste the best of what Santa Maria has to offer.
This tour is more than just a culinary experience. Your guide will also provide you with insights into the history, culture, and traditions of Cape Verde, and the role that food plays in the local way of life. You will learn about the ingredients and cooking techniques used in Cape Verdean cuisine, and how these have evolved over time.
The tour is suitable for anyone who loves good food and wants to discover the hidden gems of Santa Maria's culinary scene. Whether you are a foodie, a traveler, or a local, this is an experience not to be missed. So come and join us on a journey of gastronomic discovery, and let us show you the best that Santa Maria has to offer.
- Morning: Meet your guide and get picked up from your hotel
- Afternoon: Explore the ancient side of Cabo Verde's food culture by visiting traditional local markets and sampling street food. Learn how to capture the perfect shot of the colorful and lively market atmosphere with your camera.
- Evening: Visit a modern restaurant and indulge in some of the best food that Sal Island has to offer, while experimenting with different angles and lighting to capture the perfect food photograph.
- Morning: Visit a local fishing village and learn about the life of a sailsman, while exploring their culinary culture. Capture the stunning views of the ocean and the bustling port with your camera.
- Afternoon: Discover off-the-beaten-track places to eat, where the locals go, and taste unique flavors and dishes of Cape Verde. Experiment with your photography skills to capture the essence of the local dining experience.
- Evening: End the day with an insider's take on the modern village and little-known stories of the local community. Enjoy a final meal at a hidden gem restaurant, while practicing your food photography skills.
Note: Hotel pickup and drop-off, walking tour with guide, and gratuities are included in the price of 45€ for small groups. For individual tours and to explore other fantastic restaurants of Sal Island outside of Santa Maria, please contact us at an additional cost of 99€.
*Price for weekends and the New Year Holidays - 69€.
Phone in Santa Maria: +238 913 77 28