Toliara, the region’s capital city and named the City of the Sun, Toliara and its surrounds are predominantly semi-arid, receiving less than 400mm of rain per year. With a population of 157,000, it has been subject to European settlement for hundreds of years, the first known of which were Portuguese sailors, shipwrecked in 1527. St Augustin became a popular port in the 16th and 17th centuries for the spice trade. Since the city of Toliara has no beach and its coastline is mainly made up of mudflats and mangroves. It’s a quiet place to visit without the tourists.