Comprised of two minute islands totalling less than 1,000 sq km (620 sq mi), São Tomé & Príncipe are easy to overlook, which suits those who know about them just fine, thanks. These small Atlantic islands off Africa's western shore are a secret hotspot for birders lured in by the many endemic species and travellers looking to take things as slow as possible. Daily life unfolds at an almost glacial pace here, but the climate is anything but: Tropical temperatures averaging about 27 °C keep things low-key and laid-back. You probably haven't heard of São Tomé & Príncipe yet, but that's okay; nobody else has, either. Get here before the rush.