Colonial architecture


The capital of Angola, Luanda is an amazing city. The mixture of a large number of styles and eras in architecture surprises and delights visiting tourists. Especially attractive are the colonial-style buildings built of clay, stone and wood, which are located on the streets, with sidewalks paved. read more

Fortress of San Miguel

The main architectural and historical monuments of the Angolan island of Luanda include the fortress of St. Miguel. It was the earliest defensive structure built in Angola. Its founder was the colonizer Novaish, who became the first governor of the country. The walls are fortification. read more

Luanda is the capital of the African state - Angola. It was founded by the Portuguese colonizer over 4 hundred years ago. The status of the city was assigned to Luanda in the early 17th century. The end of the century in that the city became a kind of base for colonial administration. In two hundred years (XVII - XIX), about 2.5 million black-skinned slaves were taken out through Luanda.

In the nineteenth century, social life here underwent a sharp change. Locals began to fight for their independence. After the victory was won, Luanda became the main city of Angola.

Tourism here is excellent. Travelers will be offered a fascinating sightseeing tour of the city and its environs. And what a fascinating trip it will be to the island of Mussulo, where you can have a wonderful rest away from civilization, swimming in the gentle rays of the African sun. Popular places for tourists are the old fort, coffee plantations and the national reserve.

Photo and description

Luanda was founded in 1575 and was called São Paulo da Assunsao de Loanda. It is the capital of Angola and the largest city of the republic.

Located on the coast of the Atlantic Ocean, this city is the country's central seaport, has more than 6 million inhabitants along with the outskirts. It is also the capital of the province of Luanda and the third most populous Portuguese-speaking metropolis in the world - after São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro, the most densely populated Portuguese-speaking capital in the world, ahead of Brasilia, Maputo and Lisbon on this list.

The difficult history of the colonization and development of the country was reflected in its architecture. Ancient buildings built during the time of the colonists using natural materials available in the region - local wood, different types of clay and stone mined nearby, attract with a non-trivial flavor that you will not find anywhere else. In 1618, the Portuguese built the Fortaleza San Pedro da Barra fortress, and later built two more: Fortaleza de San Miguel (1634) and Forte de San Francisco do Penedo.

The characteristic features of colonial architecture are clearly visible in the well-preserved Fort San Miguel, the buildings of the University of Luanda. In the center of the city you can see the Jesuit Church and the Temple of the Madonna of Nazareth of the 16th-17th centuries, the Carmelite temple dating from the middle of the 17th century. The attraction is the former governor's residence. The culture of Portugal for a long time left its mark in the stylistic design of Luanda in the form of old pavements paved with mosaics.

Currently, the city is undergoing a massive reconstruction, changing its appearance.

Luanda. Photos, information, tours, leisure and attractions of Luanda (Angola)

Luanda is the capital of Angola, the largest political, cultural, financial and industrial center of the state. Luanda occupies an advantageous position on the coast of the Atlantic Ocean, in the area where the Kwanza River flows into it. The climate in this zone is tropical, the average annual rainfall is 250-500 mm, most of which falls on February-March. The warmest month of the year is March, at which time the mercury column of the thermometer rises to +30 degrees, in July the temperature drops to +16, which is largely due to the cooling effect of the Bengel current. It also explains the anomalously dry (for near equatorial latitudes) climate of the city. In the outskirts of Luanda, grassy and shrubbery savannas have remained almost intact, and numerous palm trees grow here, the groves of which south of the capital are thinning. Outside the city, you can find such wild animals as elephants, lions, leopards, zebras, antelopes, monkeys, but their populations have declined sharply in recent years due to human poaching. In coastal waters there are various representatives of the aquatic fauna: whales, turtles, mollusks, several species of fish. The city center is located at an altitude of 6 m above sea level.

  • A country: Angola
  • Provinces: Luanda
  • Center height: 6 m
  • Population: 2 825 311 people (2012)
  • Timezone: UTC + 1

History of luanda

The modern capital of Angola was founded by the Portuguese colonialist Paulo Dias de Novais (grandson of the famous navigator Bartolomeu Dias) in 1575 and was named São Paulo di Luanda (renamed Luanda in 1975). At the same time, on the rocky cape towering above the city, the San Miguel fortifications were erected.
The status of the city of São Paulo di Luanda acquired in 1605, and at the end of the XVI century. the new city became the center of the Portuguese colonial administration and the main base of the expansionist forces in Angola. In 1641, the Portuguese were forced to cede their outpost on the Atlantic coast to the Dutch, and after 7 years they returned their territories.
Between the 17th and 19th centuries, Luanda was one of the largest centers of the slave trade; about 3,000,000 Negroes were transported from the Portuguese-controlled territories through the port.
In the XX century, Luanda became the center of the national liberation struggle of the peoples of Angola, there were often clashes with Portuguese troops.
In 1961, the leadership of the People's Movement for the Liberation of Angola (MPLA) organized the inhabitants of Luanda to revolt. The armed demonstration of the capital's inhabitants served as a signal for the outbreak of civil war. In April 1974, after a series of revolutionary uprisings, the Portuguese government agreed to grant independence to Angola. In November 1975 at the political map of the world, a new state appeared - the People's Republic of Angola (since August 1992 - the Republic of Angola), whose capital was Luanda. Since 1978, the largest settlements of Angola have been repeatedly attacked by South Africa, which sought to prevent the spread of communist influence in the region and supported the National Union for the Full Independence of Angola (UNITA). In 1991, an agreement on a peaceful settlement of the conflict was signed between representatives of the Government of Angola and the opposing UNITA group in Lisbon. Nevertheless, the political situation in the region remains unstable, which impedes the rapid development of Angolan cities, including Luanda.
In 2008, it became the most expensive capital, according to ECA International. This is due to the fact that most goods usually purchased by foreigners are difficult to access and therefore very expensive. A liter of milk in Luanda can cost up to three dollars, and renting a small two-room apartment can cost up to seven thousand dollars a month.

Population, language, religion

Luanda is the largest city in Angola, its population (with suburbs) is about 4.5 million people. The ethnic composition of the capital is quite diverse: representatives of African peoples live here: Orymbunda, Mbanda, Bakongo, Lunda, Chokey, Ngantuela, Kuanyama, etc., as well as Europeans and a mixed African-European population. Metropolitan people of African descent use the Portuguese language for official negotiations, and among themselves, as a rule, in the Bantu languages ​​(kimbundu, umbunda, kikongo), which are gradually being replaced by Portuguese. 90-98% of young people in the capital speak only Portuguese. Already in the 1983 census, Portuguese was named the native language of 75% of the 2.5 million people of Luanda. Angolans of European and mixed origin speak Portuguese, which is the state language. Many residents of Luanda adhere to traditional local beliefs, there are also Christians - Catholics and Protestants (Baptists, Methodists and Congregationalists). In 1970, there were 480,613 people living in the city, with an estimated 2012 that Luanda has a population of 2,825,311.


Luanda is the center of cultural development of Angola. There are several hundred elementary schools with an eight-year term of study, there are training courses for admission to technical and pedagogical educational institutions that provide secondary education. Opened in 1976, the University of Agostinho Neto, you can get higher education. Teaching in all schools and the university is conducted in Portuguese. Since 1956, the Academy of Music has been operating in the city, the Museum of Angola has been operating, where a collection of natural historical exhibits is presented, and the Dundu Museum, which contains historical and ethnographic monuments.
Of particular note are the National and Municipal Libraries, which contain the works of the best African poets and writers (Luandin Vieira, Arthur Pestana dos Santos (pseudonym Pepetela), etc.), as well as masterpieces of world literature. Troupes of non-professional actors stage performances by local authors. In the capital, the best traditions of musical culture and dance are preserved, and the modern popular music of Angola has a close connection with the musical traditions of Brazil and the Caribbean islands.
In the city, the development of which began at the end of the 16th century, near the walls of the fortress castle of San Miguel (now the Historical Museum), many architectural sights have been preserved. From the 17th century, the walls of the forts of San Pedro da Barcom and San Fernando di Penedas remained here. In the architectural appearance of the central part of Luanda, built up like a provincial Portuguese city, the transition from baroque to classicism found expression. The main attractions of this part of the capital are the Jesuit church (16th century), the Carmelite temple (circa 1638), the Church of the Nazarene Madonna (1664) and others. City sidewalks are paved with delightful mosaics.
In the 1950s and 1970s, significant changes were made to the appearance of the capital: semicircular development began inland, the streets were planted with trees, parks and squares were laid out in the city.

Interesting about luanda

Luanda in 2008 was recognized as the most expensive city in the world. The main reasons were: high prices for goods and services in the city, as well as infrastructure destroyed by three decades of civil war.
The profits of foreign companies made in Angola through the extraction of oil and diamonds create an increased demand for high-quality housing, expensive restaurants and cars, shoes and clothes. Most Angolans live in extreme poverty. In the country, almost all food is imported. Therefore, a liter of milk can cost $ 3, and rent a two-room apartment - $ 7 thousand per month.

Luanda Attractions

Luanda is a picturesque capital, divided into two parts: Upper and Lower city. Most of the local attractions are concentrated in the Lower City. Fort San Miguel is a monument from the time of colonization. Today, the building houses a historical museum. Not far from the fort are such ancient churches as: the temple of the Madonna of Nazareth (1664), the church of Carmelitok (1638), the Jesuit church (XVI century). In the Lower City, even city sidewalks paved with mosaics deserve attention.

In the upper part of Luanda is the parliament, the Cathedral, the palace of the president and the bishop.

City attractions include local beaches. Especially popular are Belash, Mussulu, Korimba, Ile.

Literature enthusiasts will undoubtedly be delighted with the collection of books collected at the National and Municipal Libraries.

There are several interesting markets in Luanda: Rocky Santeiro and Benfica, specializing in African art.