3 THINGS YOU MUST DO IN CURAÇAO 

BON BINI NA CURACAO!

Any of you familiar with that ABC Islands? You know the ones very close to South America to the east of Venezuela? Well, before taking this trip, I knew all about Aruba and have seen all the incredible photos of the blue costal waters of the Caribbean. Arriving to Curacao, I didn’t know what to expect. I wanted to learn about it through the locals and the experiences that awaited me. The island turned out to be far more beautiful than I anticipated

When I arrived at the airport (their international one), I was greeted by the nicest woman who welcomed me with their own native language (they have multiple: Dutch, English, Spanish, and Papimiento).

She said, “Bon Bini Na Curaçao!” Of course, me being me, I started asking her all kinds of translations, “Okay, so how do you say have a good day?” “Pasa un bon dia” and how do you say, “Thank you?” “Mashi Danki.”

This continued until I was seated inside the car feeling confident that I  at least knew some words that could help me communicate with the locals, because as you all know, I love feeling like I’m part of the community.

The next few days that followed were a combination of falling in love with the views from each hotel room where I stayed and soaking up the sun in secluded beaches hidden in places where only the locals would know, and well now you…

One night during dinner, I remember staring out into the ocean when I spotted a school of Dolphins swimming right across from where I was sitting. I practically ran, cried, and filmed the whole thing. You have to understand, I’m a huge lover of the wildlife, but I never visit zoos and such. So seeing them so close on the island was the perfect gift Curaçao could have given me.

Luckily for me, Dolphins were not the only animals I spotted. For the first time in my life, I witnessed a flock of Flamingos, wild life pigs hanging by the ocean and giant sea turtles slowly swimming away.

As for things to do in Curacao, here’s my top 3:

RELAX AND ENJOY YOURSELF

You surely don’t have to be in a relationship to visit this romantic little island. As a solo female traveler, it’s perfect. Curaçao has been under the radar for sometime, so take advantage of it, and enjoy a quiet afternoon in the secret beach of Playa Porto Mari. A tropical oasis known for it’s white sands and picturesque dock that juts out over the turquoise blue waters. I spend an entire afternoon here, relaxing, swimming with the fishes (because there’s so many!), and creating my own cairn over looking the ocean. I also suggest enjoying the amenities of resorts like Papagayo. There’s so much to do at this resort, that I highly recommend a stay.

THE NIGHT LIFE

We often travel to the Caribbean for a reason, and sure it’s to relax and vacation, but Curaçao has so much to do at night, you’ll be surprised. Besides the amazing dinner options listed below, I wanted to recommend a few night life adventures as well. One of the bars that I LOVED was Luke’s Cocktail Bar. I had the ‘Partners in Crime’ cocktail made with mezcal and lime citrus. It tasted amazing! Luke’s is the kind of bar you’ll find in Brooklyn, but luckily it’s in Curaçao instead.

DINNER

  • Caña Kitchen & Bar – serves bar buns, tacos, nachos, and ceviche
  • True Di Pan – local’s favorite late-night snack served from a roadside truck (everything grilled smothered in peanut sauce!)
  • Zest Beach Café (inside Papagayo)
  • Scuba Lodge (in the trendy up-and-coming neighborhood of Pietermaai)
  • Tinto – al-fresco restaurant known for its fish dishes prepared on charcoal fire.

BARS/CLUBS

  • Omundo Wine – known for it’s various blends and live music
  • Luke’s Cocktail Bar – Incredible menu of cocktails
  • St. Tropez – an exclusive ocean club where Ibiza meets South Beach vibes.
  • Zanzibar – live acoustic music, ice-cold cocktails, and palm trees!

Our driver for this trip was Tirzah, the sweetest dushi(sweetheart) ever! She knew everyone at the bar, and made sure we all felt like locals with her. Which, I absolutely loved! An overall great atmosphere and the bartenders were friendly as well. Even Luke himself seemed ecstatic to have us there!

In case you want to start the festivities early, I would recommend making your own drink using Curacao’s very own liquor! I did a tour at Landhuis Chobolobo where I learned how to make my own drink! Here are the ingredients of a delicious and famous curaçao cocktail:

  1. 1 1/2 shot of Curacao Genuine Liquor
  2. 1/2  shot of tequila (shake it after this step)
  3. 1/2 of Ginger or Sprite
  4. Some Orange peel on top, and voila!

ROADTRIP!

You guys know how much I love road trips! In order to take in the entire experience of the island, you must rent a car and drive around! Heres a few places to checkout on your drive:

  • Bieu in Punda – for some of the best local food you’ll find on the island.
  • Playa Morto Mari – a hidden gem on Curaçao’s western coast.
  • Koraal – Located in Coral Estate on the west of the island with sweeping ocean views and saltwater swimming pools.

WHERE TO STAY

  • Renaissance Curaçao Resort & Casino – a vibrant property nestles in the heart of Willemstad featuring breathtaking views, a private beach, restaurants, and a stunning infinity pool.
  • Papagayo Beach Resort – a chic and modern hotel that will take your breath away as it took mine. There’s restaurants, stores, a gym, and boutiques within the property.

I’m so inspired to visit the rest of the ABC islands, I’m hoping to go back soon! Curaçao was the perfect ending to an incredible Summer. Where else in the Caribbean would you guys like for me to visit?

Oh, and if you visit, please make sure to drink Awa di Lamunchi…

 

*this blog post is in collaboration with Curacao Tourism Board. I’m so thankful to have been part of this incredible trip. However, all opinions and photos are my own*

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