Santa Luzia is the only uninhabited island in the Barlavento group. In the 18th century a few attempted to live here and cultivate its soil, but left when desertification took place. It became a hermitage, and then a centre for meteorological research.
The island is now a natural reserve home to several endemic birds and reptiles. It is still very arid, with poor vegetation. Those who benefit from the island are mostly fishermen, who, despite it being a reserve, continue to fish along its coast.
Santa Luzia has some great white sand beaches, accessible through arranged transport.