Sao Tome and Principe is a country consisting of two small islands and smaller islets sitting off the Western coast of Africa in the Atlantic Ocean. The islands are known for growing cacoa, so if you love chocolate, you can probably thank this small country. The Portuguese colonized the islands in the 1400s. They brought convicts to the islands and started huge sugar plantations. They also used the islands as a stopping point for boats carrying slaves to Brazil.
Sao Tome and Principe sought independence from Portugal in 1974 and finally become completely independent in 1995. The country has found oil off its coast and begun drilling. Leaders hope the oil reserves will bring new wealth to the country.
- 172,000 people live in Sao Tome and Principe.
- The country has 386 miles of land.
- Portuguese is the official language.
- Christianity is the main religion.
- The life expectancy here is 65 years.
- Islet: tiny island
- Cacoa: the pod that chocolate is made from
- Convict: someone who has been convicted of a crime and sent to prison
- Plantation: huge farm
Visit the BBC to learn more about Sao Tome.
Question: What are the main industries in Sao Tome and Principe?
Answer: Growing cocoa is still the most common industry. The country wants tourists to visit it.