Curaçao Holidays Guide

The Caribbean

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An isolated island off the Venezuelan coastin the southern Caribbean Sea, Curaçao, including the main island plus the tiny, deserted island of Klein Curaçao ("Little Curaçao"), is part of the Kingdom of the Netherlands. Curaçao was selected as one of the 'Top 21 Places We're Going in 2011' by Fodor's, one of the 'Hottest Destinations for 2011' by AOL Travel, and one of the 'Destinations to Watch in 2011' by SmarterTravel. The island nation also won two awards from Scuba Diving magazine's "Top 100 Gold List," for the "Best Dive Operation" (Ocean Encounters) and for the "Best Dive Site" (Superior Producer).Curaçao is the largest and most populous of the three ABC islands (for Aruba, Bonaire, and Curaçao) of the Lesser Antilles. Brightly painted, sherbet-colored buildings show off the Dutch colonial architecture, the likes of which cannot to be found anywhere else outside of the Netherlands."Bon Bini!" (Welcome!) and "Kon ta bai?" (How's it going?)is just about all the locallanguage you'll need to learn to have a wonderful, relaxing time in this little, undiscovered paradise.

Curaçao Highlights

Curaçao Holidays Planner

Diving and to a lesser extent snorkeling in Curaçao is an experience, and the area is well known for its coral reefs. Curaçao diving is made a little challenging and unusual in that the sea floor drops steeply just a few hundred metresfrom the shore; this feature is known as the "blue edge." The dearth of beaches and the strong currents make the rocky northern coast quite dangerous for swimming, but very experienced divers often dive there when conditions permit. The southern coast hasextremely calm waters, on the other hand, wonderful for bobbing around in the surf.

Places to Visit

Diehard divers will be thrilled with the unique Mushroom Forest, an underwater jungle of 10-foot, mushroom-shaped star coral. For land-based activities, you can explore the Hato Caves, an elaborate system of stalagmites and stalactites decoratedwith 1,500-year-old cave paintings;hike through the massive Christoffel National Park, searching for the park's wildlife, including the shy blue iguana, the rare Curaçao white-tailed deer, numerous brightly colored birds, and even a donkey or two.

Travel Facts

Curaçao Accommodation Guide

Curaçao offers a wide assortment of accommodations to fit comfortably within any travel budget,ranging from large hotel and luxury villas to cute cottages, bungalows, apartments, and guest houses. While you can find cuisine from all parts of the world, you really should try the local food, called Kriyoyo (pronounced the same as criollo, the Spanish word for "Creole"), whichhas a blend of flavours and techniques that's closest to a mix of Caribbean cuisine and Latin American cuisine. Popular dishes includestobá (a stew made with various ingredients such as papaya, beef or goat), Guiambo (soup made from okra and seafood), kadushi (cactus soup), sopimondongo (intestine soup), funchi (cornmeal paste similar to fufu, ugali and polenta) and a lot of fish and other seafood. You will probably be served fried plantain (banana) with just about every meal. Also, you'll want to try the fried iguana—an island specialty. Curaçao's annual Carnival is one of the largest and longest-lasting Carnivals in the Caribbean; it starts in early January, and finally winds downin late February/ March.

Curaçao Holiday Tips
Curaçao Travel Info
Curaçao International Airport is new and modern, and has service to/from the US, parts of South America, Canada, Portugal, and numerous other Caribbean islands. Rent a jeep and take a self-guided tour around this friendly, hidden gem in the Caribbean.