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Journey to the Equator in Sao Tome and Principe

Uncover the ‘African Galapagos’ on a truly off-the-beaten-path adventure in one of the world's least-visited destinations

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Trip Ref #10680

Journey to the Equator in Sao Tome and Principe

Uncover the ‘African Galapagos’ on a truly off-the-beaten-path adventure in one of the world's least-visited destinations

DURATION
10 nights
LOCATION
São Tomé and Principe
ANNUAL LEAVE
7 days off work
SEASON
Dec-Feb | Jun-Aug
GROUP SIZE
Up to 14 people
MEETING POINT
São Tomé International Airport
ACCOMMODATION
Classic

Hotel · Beach Hut · Guesthouse · Rainforest Lodge

OVERALL RATING

4.8

Based on 5 reviews
DIFFICULTY
Easy

This trip is perfect for those with average fitness, plus a love for hiking in the natural world and off-the-beaten-path destinations

Venture to West Africa's lost archipelago, hiking extinct volcanoes and primordial forest to secluded waterfalls and remote beaches

Trek through a biosphere reserve with greater density of endemic species per square mile than anywhere else on the planet

Head to Rolas Island to stand on the equator, hop between deserted palm-fringed beaches and swim with sea turtles

Dive deep into São Tomé’s colonial heritage, and learn about local sustainability and conservation strategies

Day 1

Welcome to 'the African Galapagos'

Catch your first glimpse of this stunningly beautiful African archipelago from the plane, and marvel at the two dots of dense, tropical forest lapped by the ocean below – welcome to São Tomé and Principe! The remoteness of this two-island nation (roughly 260km off the coast of Gabon) has helped preserve its lush, biodiverse wilderness, so it's often referred to as 'Africa's Eden' or 'the African Galapagos’. Only around 30,000 tourists visit each year. Your adventure starts on the main island of São Tomé, which was uninhabited until it was discovered by the Portuguese in the late 15th century. Your host will transfer you from the airport to your hotel, centrally located in the small capital city. Head out with your guide and fellow travellers for dinner, then rest before the adventure really kicks off tomorrow!

Day 2

The journey south

Hiking

2.5hrs · 6.5km · 250m up · 250m down

Driving

3hrs

Take a road trip along the coast and head south, getting a glimpse of the island's rich cultural heritage and some natural highlights along the way. Learn about the island's complex colonial past at Roça Agua Izé, the first cocoa plantation of São Tomé. You'll then move on to Boca do Inferno (Hell’s Mouth), a stunning stretch of coastline with rock passages and a natural blowhole. Spot the iconic peak of Cão Grande rising 663m from the rainforest – this enormous hardened column of magma gives São Tomé a real 'lost world' vibe. Reach the remote Praia Jalé, an important sanctuary for marine turtles, then tuck into lunch before hiking along the coast from beach to beach, until you reach your secluded eco-lodge, right on the shore of Inhame Beach. Fall asleep in your wooden hut, lulled by the sound of waves.

Day 3

Hop to Rolas Island and stand on the equator

Hiking

2.5hrs · 4.5km · 50m up · 50m down

Swimming

2hrs

Another day in tropical paradise awaits. Take a boat around the dreamy islet of Ilheu das Rolas (sea conditions permitting), fringed by deserted beaches, before exploring it on foot, hiking the maze of verdant jungle trails to the sound of exotic birds. Climb up a promontory, where a monument marks the equatorial line which runs through the island, then enjoy some fresh fish at Praia Café beach. Spend a few hours swimming and snorkelling the crystal clear waters – eyed peeled for sea turtles. Tonight, you'll meet with the NGO Programa Tatô and learn about their successful sea turtle conservation project. São Tomé is an important breeding and feeding area for five of the world's seven species of sea turtle, so the chances of witnessing them nesting (Nov to Feb) or the release of baby turtles (Jan to Apr) are pretty high!

Day 4

From mangroves to coffee plantations

Hiking

1.5hrs · 4km · 50m up · 50m down

Driving

3hrs

Wake early and journey to the island's virgin interior, through historic coffee plantations and a humid wilderness of jungle-covered mountains. First, stop for a boat tour in Malanza – the largest mangrove reserve in the country and richly biodiverse. Next, visit the museum in Roça Monte Café to learn about the coffee-making process as well as the history of those who were enslaved and brought to the island. Enjoy a superb lunch at Casa Museu Almada Negreiros overlooking the verdant hillside, and stretch your legs with a short afternoon hike through nearby plantations to a waterfall.

Day 5

Trek the virgin rainforests of Obo Natural Park

Hiking

5hrs · 10km · 620m up · 620m down

Venture deeper into São Tomé hiking through the Obo National Park, known for its richly biodiverse, high-altitude rainforests. Begin with a visit to the Botanical Garden of Bom Sucesso – the gateway to the park, it's home to over 400 species of endemic flora and over a thousand samples of plants, including rare orchids. Continue towards Lagoa Amelia, an extinct volcanic crater surrounded by lush trees and giant begonias. You'll be accompanied by an expert naturalist guide for full immersion in the island's unique ecosystem, looking out for medicinal plants, colourful birds and giant snails. Enjoy magnificent views over the verdant valleys around the Camino Fugido trail and peek over the towering Pico of São Tomé, the highest point in the country.

Day 6

Fly to the 'lost world' of Principe Island

Hiking

3.5hrs · 8km · 230m up · 230m down

If you thought São Tomé felt like a lost paradise, wait until you approach tiny Principe. As you fly in on a small propeller plane, the vastness of the ocean highlights how remote this second island really is, and also explains why many species here are endemic. Principe was designated as a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve in 2012 and when seen from the sky, the island appears almost totally covered by lush wilderness plunging into the sea, with a magnificent topography of volcanic features. Your base for the next four nights is a local guesthouse in Santo Antonio, the world’s smallest capital! Get a taste of Principe's luxuriant rainforests as you trek to the secluded Oque Pipi, the island’s largest waterfall, and enjoy a refreshing dip in the natural pool. Go for a swim at Abelha Beach, then drive back to Santo Antonio for the night.

Day 7

Hike, swim and beach hop in paradise

Hiking

4.5hrs · 10km · 290m up · 340m down

Swimming

2hrs

Today's adventure will take you hiking, swimming or snorkelling along Principe's picture-perfect beaches. Starting from the fascinating Belo Monte museum, hike through the lush forest to a dreamy clifftop viewpoint, before descending to sea level where you'll find the golden sands, boulders and crystal-clear waters of Praia Banana – without doubt one of the most idyllic tropical spots in the world. After a swim or a drink under the shady palm trees, continue on foot to Praia Boi, one of the island's most inaccessible (and often deserted) beaches. The final stop is Praia Grande, the biggest beach in Principe and an important spot for nesting sea turtles. Hop in a van back to head back to your guesthouse, and this evening enjoy local delicacies such as octopus with fried banana, or grilled fresh fish, in one of the family-run restaurants in town.

Day 8

Climb Pico Papagaio and relax in Roça Sundy

Hiking

4.5hrs · 9km · 480m up · 480m down

If you are up for a challenge, wake at sunrise and join your local guide for a hike up Papagaio Peak, the iconic volcanic landmark of Principe visible from the capital. Ascend through the steep and muddy forest trails to reach the 680m summit and be rewarded with sweeping panoramas. The trail itself ventures deep into the wildlife-rich Parque Natural do Príncipe – home to oca trees, monkeys, butterflies and colourful wild orchids. Off the trail, stop to see local artisans at work crafting jewellery from glass bottles, then grab lunch at a scenic secret spot. Enjoy a more leisurely afternoon exploring the grounds of Roça Sundy – one of the biggest cocoa plantations on the Isle of Principe – and stand in the exact same spot where astrophysicist Sir Arthur Eddington proved Albert Einstein’s theory of relativity in 1919.

Day 9

Explore Agulhas Bay

Hiking

3hrs · 7km · 80m up · 250m down

Wrap up your time in Principe with a trek and boat trip along Principe's Bahia das Agulhas (Bay of Needles). Hiking from São Joaquim through dense forest, you'll reach Praia Lapa and Maria Correia, where a secluded waterfall awaits. Baía das Agulhas is a geographical wonder best seen from the water, so next you'll jump on a boat and float along this otherworldly stretch of coastline. Marvel at the prehistoric volcanic towers rising out of the ocean like something out of Jurassic Park as you journey across glittering turquoise waters, stopping for a picnic and some swimming at some of the island's most enchanting beaches. Back in Santo Antonio, head out for a delicious meal with your fellow adventurers and get some rest before you fly back to São Tomé tomorrow.

Day 10

Back to São Tomé

Snorkelling

1hr

Take a short flight back to São Tomé, and (flight time permitting) stop for a visit of Roça Agostinho Neto, once the grandest cocoa plantation on the island. Next, head out for an optional swim or snorkel at Lagoa Azul, a savannah area, surrounded by baobabs and tamarind trees. This afternoon, you'll reach your secluded eco-lodge nestled in the lush foliage of the northern tip of the island. Enjoy some well-earned downtime and catch a beautiful sunset with a drink from the restaurant's panoramic terrace. Lay back in your secluded hut and listen to the rainforest come alive with the sounds of insects and nocturnal wildlife as you drift off to sleep.

Day 11

The path to Angolar waterfall

Hiking

3hrs · 8.5km · 120m up · 120m down

International flights usually leave São Tomé in the evening, so this morning you'll have the chance to enjoy one final hike into the Rio Contador valley. Navigate a series of eerie tunnels excavated into the mountain during the colonial era which are now home to hundreds of bats, and reach the majestic Angolar Waterfall, hidden away in a cliff which forms a natural amphitheatre. Back at the lodge, you'll have some time to freshen up and grab lunch before transferring to the airport for your flight back home. Stop en route at a famous chocolate producer for some sublime tasting – the sweetest way to finish your epic tropical adventure!

Included

Guides

Expert, local, English-speaking guides

Accommodation

10 nights in locally-run ecolodges and guesthouses

Meals

All breakfasts, 9 lunches and 6 dinners

Transfers

All airport and ground transfers, plus flights between São Tomé and Principe islands

Permits

All park permits and local taxes

Not Included

Travel insurance

Personal expenses

Tips for your guides

Some meals as described

Visas where required

Flights to and from the meeting point

Day 1

Hotel · Twin share

Breakfast

Lunch

Dinner

Day 2 – Day 3

Beach Hut · Twin share

Breakfast

Lunch

Dinner

Day 4 – Day 5

Guesthouse · Twin share

Breakfast

Lunch

Dinner

Day 6 – Day 9

Guesthouse · Twin share

Breakfast

Lunch

Dinner

Day 10

Rainforest Lodge · Twin share

Breakfast

Lunch

Dinner

Day 11

Breakfast

Lunch

Dinner

What is the food like?

São Tomean cuisine comprises a variety of delicious fresh local fish, and tropical fruits such as plantains, mango, jackfruit and coconut as well as corn/maize. A standard meal for lunch and dinner will often feature fish or chicken with rice, fried banana, or maybe jackfruit. With such a remarkable local abundance, the islands are truly a paradise for seafood lovers and you'll taste some of the best octopus (polvo), red grouper (cherne) and sea bass (corvina) of your life, which usually come grilled (grelhado) or baked (asado). Other popular dishes include feijoada, a wholesome bean stew made with either pork or fish and often served with riz creole (seasoned rice); chicken marinated with a mix of flavoursome spices and garlic, and spicy piri-piri sauce; and calulu, a flavourful stew made with dried smoked fish and a delectable sauce of fresh oca leaves, palm oil, okra, watercress, malagueta chilli, and an assortment of fresh local herbs.

Refreshing lagers are imported from Portugal, but there is also a national beer brewed in the north of São Tomé, known either as Rosema or Nacional, which comes in big pint-sized bottles with no label.

Vegetarians, vegans and other dietary requirements and allergies can be catered for, but please note that the variety and choice of meals can be very limited. Please just request this on your passenger info form.

What is the accommodation like?

São Tomé

Spend your first night at the central Hotel Avenida in São Tomé. Accommodation is in twin-share rooms equipped with an en suite bathroom, a TV, air conditioning and free Wi-Fi. The property also includes a garden and a small pool.

Praia Inhame

Two nights will be spent at the secluded Praia Inhame Ecolodge, a beachfront property nestled in lush vegetation with an onsite local restaurant featuring sea-view dining. Accommodation will be in simple but cosy wooden bungalows, each equipped with a private bathroom and a small balcony. Free Wi-Fi is available at the property's restaurant and bar.

Monte Café

You'll spend two nights at Roça Saudade Guesthouse, nestled in the lush mountains of Trinidade and just a short hike away from San Nicolau waterfall, at the edge of Obó Natural Park. You'll stay in twin-share rooms, and some include a balcony and/or a patio with a garden view. The guesthouse is adjacent to a renowned local restaurant, Casa Museu Almada Negreiros – famous for its excellent tasting menus and stunning views over a verdant hillside canopy. Occasionally, depending on the size of the group, you may be accommodated at alternative lodgings of a similar standard in Roça Milagrosa.

Principe Island

While on Principe, you will spend four nights in a locally owned, family-run guesthouse or B&B in Santo Antonio – the island's capital. This will usually be the Pensão Residencial Palhota. (Occasionally, subject to availability, the group may be split between two different properties nearby.) Accommodation will be in simple twin-share rooms with en suite bathrooms. Please be aware that the island is far less developed than Sao Tomé, so don't expect luxury. However, this is a real opportunity to support the local community and practice truly sustainable tourism.

Ponta Figo

Spend your final night in São Tomé at Mucumbli, in a real slice of paradise – the perfect place to relax and truly connect with nature before your adventure ends. You'll stay in twin-share chalets among lush, colourful gardens, some of which have a sea view. The restaurant offers a panoramic deck with loungers and a well-stocked bar, serving delicious meals made with local ingredients.

Upgrades

For solo travellers looking for their own space, an optional private room can be booked for an extra charge, see Optional Extras for the price. Please request this at the time of booking (this is subject to availability).

The Area

map

Logistics

Starts

São Tomé International Airport

Any time on Day 1

Ends

São Tomé International Airport

18:00 on Day 11

Transfers

On Day 1 your host will meet you at the airport and drive you to your central accommodation in the historic centre of São Tomé. At the end of the trip, there will be one group transfer to the international airport, which is usually scheduled in the afternoon.

Arrival and departure transfers are only included in the main price if you arrive on Day 1 and depart on Day 11. If you would like a private transfer outside of these times, this can be arranged with your host for an extra cost – please see Optional Extras for the price.

Travel options

TAP Air Portugal is the main carrier to use when getting to São Tomé. There are regular direct flights throughout the year from and to Lisbon – although these do not operate daily, the itinerary has been scheduled to ensure these are available on Day 1 and Day 11 of the trip.

The shortest flight combinations from the UK connect differently depending on the time of the year. Between December and March, outbound flights from the UK usually connect on the same day, with an early departure from Heathrow, a stopover of approximately two hours in Lisbon, then a direct flight to São Tomé, arriving on the island in the late afternoon. To be extra safe, we encourage to consider departing from the UK a day earlier and stopping overnight in Lisbon, so you have ample time to make your international flight on Day 1. The return journey usually involves an overnight flight with a two or three hours stopover in Lisbon, landing back in the UK the following day (Day 12). On the summer departures (running between June and September), the connections don't work as well on the outbound flight so we strongly recommend flying to Lisbon a day earlier, thus allowing more time for the direct flight from Lisbon on Day 1 of the trip.

If you are planning to add on any extra days in Lisbon prior to or after the trip, it may be cheaper to consider booking your tickets with different airlines – TAP for your flights to and from São Tomé, and a low-cost carrier for your journey to and from Lisbon. If you decide to book your journey with different airlines, please ensure you plan ample time or extra days for the connection, to avoid your international journey being disrupted.

Please note that occasionally, flights between São Tomé and Lisbon involve a very short stop in Accra (Ghana), but a change of plane is not usually required. This is mainly to allow other passengers to board or leave the aircraft.

Internal flights between the islands of São Tomé and Principe are included in the cost of the trip and booked by your local host. These are usually operated by the reliable local carrier, STP Airways.

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What do I need to bring?

BAGS

  • Soft overnight duffel bag or rucksack (please note: the maximum baggage allowance on the domestic flight is 15kg per person)
  • Daypack (20-30 litres)
  • Waterproof liner for kitbag/rucksack, or drybags

CLOTHES

  • Waterproof jacket
  • Waterproof trousers
  • Lightweight trousers/shorts/skirts
  • Long trekking trousers and long-sleeved shirts for jungle treks
  • T-shirts
  • Underwear and socks
  • Swimwear
  • Sunglasses
  • Sunhat
  • Sleepwear
  • Hiking boots or shoes (worn-in) - the trails can be very muddy so bring shoes with good grip for the hikes
  • Sandals
  • Flip-flops

OTHER

  • Snorkelling gear (not available to hire locally)
  • Universal travel plug adapter
  • Power bank or solar charger
  • Passports (and visas)
  • Travel insurance documents
  • Ear plugs
  • Insect repellent
  • Suncream
  • Personal first-aid kit (inc. blister treatment and antimalarial tablets)
  • Personal items (biodegradable toiletries, sanitary wear etc)
  • Quick-dry towel
  • Alcohol hand-gel
  • Headtorch or torch
  • Reusable water bottle x2 litre
  • Biodegradable wet-wipes
  • Energy bars and snacks - read our article on Best Hiking Snacks
  • Water purification tablets/treatment system
*Requests for optional extras can be made after booking on your “My Bookings” page

Additional Night in São Tomé Single Room

Payable Before Departure

Additional Night in São Tomé Single Room

Additional Night in São Tomé Twin/Double Room

Payable Before Departure

Additional Night in São Tomé Twin/Double Room

Additional Night at Mucumbli, Ponta Figo - Single Room

Payable Before Departure

Additional Night at Mucumbli, Ponta Figo - Single Room

Additional Night at Mucumbli, Ponta Figo - Twin/Double Room

Payable Before Departure

Additional Night at Mucumbli, Ponta Figo - Twin/Double Room

Optional Private Room Upgrade

Payable Before Departure

Optional Private Room Upgrade

Private airport transfer Sao Tomé (one way)

Payable Before Departure

Private airport transfer Sao Tomé (one way)

William B.
An African Gem

A stunning country to visit, it sometimes feels like you have the whole island to yourself. A great tour with plenty of hikes and beaches led by a great chap, in our case, Sipson who was great company throughout and kept everything running smoothly. Highly recommended, especially if you enjoy visiting Africa.

Steven O.
A proper adventure

I thoroughly enjoyed my time in what has been referred to as one of the least visited countries on earth. However, the baffling lack of tourists only made for a more enriching experience where the slow pace of life must be embraced to find solitude on idyllic sandy beaches and whilst hiking in tropical rainforests. Our tour leader, Sipson, was first class and demonstrated both passion and energy to ensure everyone had a positive experience despite one or two minor hiccups. His patience is to be commended given some of the challenges that were presented to him and always endeavoured to find a solution. The food and accommodation often exceeded my expectations especially lunch at Casa Museu Almada Negreiros, but it should be noted that infrastructure is somewhat basic in São Tomé and Príncipe i.e., you may not have 24 hours of electricity on Príncipe Island, the roads are bumpy and some of the paths are tricky to navigate especially when wet. It's not an easy trip but if you like a bit of adventure and come with an open mind - you'll love it!

Lisa P.
A great trip but not easy

Don’t book thinking this is easy. It’s extremely hot and humid, there’s scrambling as well as walking and it can be muddy, steep, slippery and precarious with sheer drop offs. I struggled with an old knee injury. It’s harder when it rains, to the point a couple of people didn’t do any more walks after it did and stuck to the beach.

Expect creepy crawlies, snakes, power and water cuts (especially on Principe) and to be hot and sweaty most of the time.

Having said that, the islands are lovely. Sipson was great and did his best to accommodate everyone’s needs, the people are super friendly, the views stunning and the beaches divine. The itinerary is packed but you can opt out of what you want to.

Gave a 4 as there were a couple of organisational issues with rooms and things closed when we turned up, and sometimes it was hard to get information with just one guide and a large group. Other than that, it was an enjoyable trip and a real adventure.

Tips: not many places take credit cards, and then only Visa, so take enough cash.

Sealable plastic bags are useful when it rains.

Needs mozzie spray in the day for the rainforest.

Often didn’t eat until 3pm so take snacks.

Swim at your own risk.

Don’t forget malaria tablets and vaccinations.

Nils V.
Picture perfects days in Sao Tome and Principe

Beautiful beaches and enchanting rainforests are just a couple of highlights of this trip. Include genuine, friendly people, good food, chocolate and local beer, and we are almost there. Sipson was a perfect guide who went above and beyond to make everyone happy. I wound personally like some longer hikes (overnight if possible ;) in the forest for it to be top marks. But all in all a truly enjoyable winter escape with a happy group of people.

Rachel L.
Amazing trip

Beautiful place, our guide Sipson was wonderful and very accommodating with all the group, for example making other plans for people having a day off hiking. Some beautiful accommodations and great food Activity rating definitely needs to be increased - many hikes are long and steep, all on rough terrain in intense heat and humidity

We partner with the World Land Trust to ensure this trip achieves Net-Zero emissions. We also support their Buy an Acre programme, helping local communities to buy and protect natural habitats in perpetuity.

What's the number?
It works out on average at 314kg of CO2 emissions per person, including all local transport, accommodation, food, activities, guides, staff and office operations.

The only thing it doesn’t include right now is flights and travel to the destination. We do make an overall estimate across all our customers separately, but as we don’t book flights, have customers from all corners of the world, and no way of reliably knowing their travel plans, we simply can’t include an individual number in the figure on display here. We’ve got a goal to fix that, so that when you book, there is a way to measure and mitigate the carbon emitted by your flight too.

But what does the number mean?
Yep, hard to picture eh? To give you an idea:

  • Driving 1000miles/1609km would be approx. 281kg of CO2 in an average car (or 140.5kg per person if there was 2 of you in it).
  • A return economy class flight London - New York would be approx. 1,619kg (1.66 tonnes) per person.
  • 10 trees in a temperate forest are estimated to remove approx. 250kg of CO2 from the air in a period of 5-10 years.

What are we doing about it?
Our trips are relatively low-carbon by design, and we're working with all our hosts to develop long term carbon reduction plans. We partner with the World Land Trust to ensure this trip achieves Net-Zero emissions. We also support their Buy an Acre programme, helping local communities to buy and protect natural habitats in perpetuity, ensuring the protection of the reserve and its wildlife.

Want to know more?
Amazingly, no international travel company has ever publicly published their carbon measurements before, as far as we know. We believe that must change, quickly. So we’re openly sharing the method we used in the hope that other companies will be able to more easily follow suit and build on what we've done so far. You'll find it all here.

Anyone with average fitness levels can enjoy this trip. All you'll need is to be able to handle a few hours of activity every day – a mixture of between hiking, snorkelling and swimming. It's worth noting that whilst the trekking distances and elevations do not seem challenging in isolation, the hot, humid climate can add to the intensity of the activities. Some of the trails can quickly become overgrown and it is possible to encounter wet mud underfoot in some sections of the jungle.

The climb up Papagaio Peak involves a strenuous, steep ascent, occasionally with the use of ropes to tackle the muddy, overgrown terrain. You should be comfortable with your fitness level if you wish to join this hike – otherwise, you can always join the group later and enjoy a lie-in while you wait for the others to return from the trek.

Please note that any snorkelling is optional (using your own gear) and not guided, so you must be able to swim and be comfortable in the water if you decided to pursue this activity.

Sure can! Over 70% of our travellers travel solo, it’s a great way to meet like-minded people.

Tips are not included in the trip cost. These are entirely at your discretion but there is an expectation to tip for good service. We suggest the below as a guideline per person:

€40 for the trip, per person

Of course, you are free to tip more or less, and the amount should be reflective of your perception of service and quality – a tip is not compulsory and should only be given when you receive excellent service.

Tap water in São Tomé and Principe is not safe to drink. You may find purified water in some of the accommodation which you can use to fill up each morning, so be sure to pack a reusable water bottle or two. To avoid plastic waste where filtered water is not available, we suggest bringing water purification tablets (or an alternative purification system) for extra safety. See here for our guide to water filters.

There is a Zero Plastic initiative on Príncipe which involves a trade-in program where locals collect discarded plastic bottles that litter the coastlines and exchange them for stainless steel drinking bottles that can be used to unlock and collect clean water from freshwater fountains across the islands. Water points include schools, markets, the airport, and other public spaces.

The climate of São Tomé and Príncipe is tropical, with a long rainy season lasting nine months, from September through May, interrupted by a short dry period called Gravanito, which occurs during the months of December to February, when the trip is scheduled to run. A three-month dry season called Gravana then lasts from June through to August. The climate is hot and humid throughout the year, with average temperatures around 30°C (86°F) from January to April and slightly lower from June to August. Both islands are covered with impenetrable forest, so it's not unusual to have some mist and cloudy skies.

The trip starts and ends in São Tomé, so if you have any excess luggage that you can't take with you to Principe, you can leave this with your host to store it securely. Please bear in mind the internal flight allowance is a maximum of 15kg per person for hold luggage, and you can use your small rucksack as hand luggage to take with you on the flight.

We recommend checking out the country specific information here and also talking to a travel nurse.

Internal flights are required on this trip in order to access the remote island of Principe. Please provide your passport details soon after booking so your seats can be reserved. Should external factors, (such as severe weather conditions) cause alterations to what is possible, then the ordering of the above itinerary and/or the exact number of days spent in each location may have to change. The local host will endeavour to ensure that any replacement activities are of a similar style.

No. You'll need to have a larger bag suitable for all your belongings which will be transported for you, and then a small daysack to carry personal items during each day of hiking.

São Tomé and Principe is, to date, one of the world’s least-visited countries. A little over 30,000 tourists visit each year, mainly Portuguese. It's possible you'll find your group to be the only one on a deserted beach, or hiking in total solitude in the rainforest. The country aims for tourism to become more prominent as a pillar of the economy and your visit will have a significant positive impact on the local communities of these remote islands. The trip is run by an experienced and established local host with principles of responsible and sustainable tourism: in fact, the host is a founding member of the Sustainable Platform of Tourism of STP and works with small local providers (restaurants, guesthouses, local boatmen, artisans and guides).

You'll also have the chance to meet two NGO teams (one on each of the islands) to learn about the successful conservation and sustainability strategies they have developed, as well as the challenges and achievements the small two-island nation has faced.

Our recommended travel insurance provider is Campbell Irvine.

Travel insurance is compulsory for all of our adventures and you are required to provide your policy information before departing.

Your insurance should include adequate protection for overseas medical treatment, evacuation/repatriation, your baggage and equipment and the specific activities involved on your adventure. We also strongly recommend it includes cancellation and curtailment insurance, should you be unable to join your trip for specific reasons such as illness.

We fully endorse Campbell Irvine as their insurance offers all of the above, so get in touch with them or call on 020 7938 1734 to get your insurance sorted. We suggest that you book travel insurance as soon as you book your adventure, just to cover you for any last-minute life changes. We know you’re an active lot and injuries do happen!

We automatically convert prices from the local currency that a host receives to your chosen currency. We update our exchange rates on a daily basis so this does mean that prices displayed on the site are subject to currency fluctuations, which is why you may see them change over time.

If you wish to change the currency you pay in, head to the bottom of the page.

All of our group adventures are specially designed for adults to enjoy (18+) as we want these adventures to bring together outdoorsy people who are truly like-minded. Children can be accommodated on some private departures.

You're always in good company on one of our adventures.

Our trips are typically made up of a mixture of solo travellers and small groups of 2 or 3 friends, with most in their 30s-50s.

Our sociable adventures are solo-friendly by design and naturally attract outdoorsy people with a shared mindset; a love for adventure, a desire to push themselves and meet awesome, like-minded people along the way.

It’s this camaraderie that has so often turned a great adventure into a life-changing one.

Don't just take our word for it:

  • 95% of people rate the group dynamics on our trips 5/5
  • 90% of people recommend joining a trip to make new friends
  • 75% of people have met people on our trips that they would now consider friends

See here for more info about the Much Better Adventures tribe.

Interested in a more exclusive experience? Opt for a 'Private Group' through the dates and prices tab to book this adventure for just you and your chosen companions.

Your trip is led by carefully curated local hosts and expert guides. See here for more info about the guides we work with.

TRIP DEPARTURE DATES

June 2024

Wednesday • 12th June 2024

to Saturday • 22nd June 2024
€2,050.00
9 Booked • 5 Spots left
Guaranteed to run

Wednesday • 17th July 2024

to Saturday • 27th July 2024
€2,050.00
5 Booked • 9 Spots left
Guaranteed to run

Sunday • 8th December 2024

to Wednesday • 18th December 2024
€2,050.00
6 Booked • 8 Spots left
Guaranteed to run

Pay In Installments

You can choose to pay for this trip in as many installments as you like, with no interest or fees.

Full Financial Protection

Your money is safe. Every booking is fully financially protected.

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