Curaçao is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the Caribbean, and for good reason. The island has a lot to offer—from sandy beaches to rugged mountains, and luxury resorts to quiet natural parks. It’s littered with brightly coloured buildings, rich history and some of the most picturesque spots! Whether you’re visiting or just want some tips on what to do while on vacation there, here’s a list of our top picks to make your time in Curaçao unforgettably dushi*:
5. Sightseeing in the Capital, Willemstad
If you’re looking for an easy way to see all of Curaçao’s main attractions, a Trolley Tram Tour is perfect for you. The Trolley Tram will take you through most of the island’s major tourist attractions, including Curaçao’s capital, Willemstad, and its historic centre, Fort Amsterdam and Fort Nassau, as well as its shopping district. It also stops at some beaches on the south side of Curaçao where you can get off if you want to spend time in one of those areas or go swimming in the ocean (or both).
One sight you will definitely appreciate while in Curaçao, is the Queen Emma Pontoon Bridge. It’s also known as the floating bridge and spans just under 200 m (548 feet) across the St. Anna Bay connecting both sides of Willemstad – Punda & Otrobanda. It’s called the floating bridge because it is designed to open to allow for the passing of vessels. If you’re lucky, you can catch an up-close view of the bridge opening for a ship to pass through! This only takes a couple of minutes, however, while it’s happening – and if you’re in a hurry to get to the other side of Willemstad – a ferry is provided while the bridge is open so you can still cross the bay.
One thing we definitely advise is to have a shopping day! Shopping is one of the best ways to explore Curaçao. Punda and Otrobanda – the two sides of Willemstad – are both great places to shop, with plenty of options for souvenirs, gifts and clothing. We recommend checking out the local markets during your stay in either area of town. The markets in Punda and Otrobanda both offer fresh produce as well as local handicrafts such as handmade jewellery. There are also murals and large fine art located in Punda and Otrobanda which are the perfect backdrops for your next photos!
While in Willemstad, you can also visit the Renaissance & Rif Fort Mall which is an open-air mall that is partly located within the walls of a historic fort dating from the 19th century. It’s an excellent location for shopping and dining and boasts of the perfect mix of history, spectacular views, and live entertainment.
You can also head over to the Sambil Mall if you’re looking for more shopping and fun activities to do. It’s home to stores of many brands you know and love such as Bath & Body Works, Pandora, Skechers, Levi’s & Calvin Klein. There are also lots of activities to keep the kids entertained such as Dushi Bowling.
3. Hato Caves
If you’re adventurous, you may enjoy exploring the Hato Caves. The caves are made of marine coral limestone that formed over millions of years and were exposed to atmospheric corrosion and karst processes after sea levels fell. In order to reach the entrance of the caves, you’ll have to climb some steps, however, once upstairs you are greeted with a stunning panoramic view of the area and a refreshing breeze.
The interior of the caves has paved pathways and is well-lit to guide your steps. For further support and safety, handrails are placed throughout the paths and stairs.
2. The Curaçao Ostrich Farm
The Curaçao Ostrich Farm is a must-visit for any tourist looking to get up close to the island’s native wildlife. This is also an excellent activity if you’re travelling with children. The farm offers a safari tour that takes you for a ride that covers the entire farm. You’ll get to see ostriches at every stage of development, learn the story of how the ostriches came to live on the island and if you’re up for it you can even feed the ostriches!
1. Beach Hopping
Breath-taking beaches are in abundance in Curaçao! It’s also home to one of the 21 Best Beaches in the World, Cas Abao Beach. Other popular beaches include Mambo Beach where you can take photos in a giant beach chair; Jan Thiel Beach which is great for relaxing and sipping on a refreshing cocktail; Blue Bay which is perfect for water sports and Knip Beach where you can swim out to the reef if you’re a strong swimmer.
Many of the beaches are also great for snorkelling and there are nearby restaurants where you can purchase a tasty meal so there’s no need to pack lunch!
Honourable mention goes out to visiting Curaçao’s nature parks such as the Shete Boka National Park.
We hope you enjoyed our list of the top 5 things to do in Curaçao! We know that it can be hard to choose from all the fun activities this island has to offer, but these are some of our favourites.
*dushi – sweet
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