12 Top-Secret Tips for Finding the Very Best of Curacao

Updated: Apr 14, 2019


Travel bloggers and writers love to come to Curacao.

Why?

Because this vibrant, quirky island provides endless material! From interesting conversations with locals, to an eclectic cuisine worth writing about, to stunning photo ops, to a storied Dutch/Caribbean history to investigate...Curacao makes for a compelling subject.

If you’re checking out our Villa Seashell vacation rental site, chances are that, like travel writers, you’re the type to “think outside the beach resort” and value authentic experiences when you travel.

To save you the trouble of combing the Internet, we’ve gathered our favorite Curacao tips from the travel gurus who have visited and written about Curacao (or live here!).

We love these experts because they specialize in locating the heart of a destination and sharing it with others.

Have additional questions about how best to spend your time in Curacao? Feel free to contact us at villaseashell@gmail.com.

Curacao’s Beaches


First, let’s talk beaches. Not only do we have dozens to choose from for your sun-drenched days on the Caribbean, each beach is a shade different.

Here are two travel bloggers on the subject.

1. “There are over 40 beaches on the island of Curacao ranging from white sand beaches to rocky pebbled beaches. All of the beaches are cove or lagoon beaches. You won’t find huge stretches of white sand beaches on this island. Many beaches charge a daily entrance fee. There is also a fee for chairs or palapas [thatched-roof, open-air cabanas] on many beaches. Most beaches are accessible by dirt roads but there is good signage telling you where to go.”

--Tamilee of Tammilee Tips

And if you’re looking for a particularly splendid beach:

2. “Klein Curacao (which translates to ‘Little Curacao’ is a small, uninhabited island about two hours off the mainland by boat. It’s a must visit. The first thing that comes into sight when approaching the island is its old lighthouse. You can climb up the tower to enjoy the view. Be careful though, the building isn’t in great shape so mind your steps. Trips to Klein Curacao can be booked with Mermaid Boat Trips or Miss Ann Boat Trips. Costs are about $100 per adult, $50 for children under 10 years old and include lunch, non-alcoholic drinks and snorkeling equipment. If you want a more private experience, you can call Zeno Lothman at 00-599-9677-0981.”

–Jasper of The Traveling Dutchman.

Family-Friendly Curacao


Curacao is perfect for forward-thinking families who want to share a fun and meaningful experience with their kids. Here, Chuck of Chuck on Tour shares two must-do activities for families visiting Curacao:

3. “For families a great outing is The Curacao Sea Aquarium. Here you can snorkel or scuba dive and hand feed stingrays, sea turtles, sharks and many other colorful tropical fish. The aquarium also has interactive programs like the Dolphin Encounter, Sea Lion Encounter Dolphin Swim, Dolphin Snorkel and Dolphin Dive.”

And…

4. “Now for something completely different why not visit the Ostrich Farm - the tour will give you the lowdown on these big birds, you 'll find out the strength of an ostrich egg by standing on one, do you know it can support your weight without breaking!”

Budget-friendly Curacao


Nomadic Matt is one of the Internet’s most well-known travel bloggers. He’s been everywhere. Seriously, everywhere! And he shares with his readers how to enjoy the world on a budget.

We’ll go ahead own up to it: even though Matt loved meeting the friendly locals, he didn’t love Curacao (we’re not mad—it’s not for everyone).

He does offer some excellent tips for enjoying Curacao on a budget, however. And he gave us the go-ahead to share:

5. “Have a BBQ – BBQ-ing on the beach is a popular local activity and can help you save a lot of money on food.” [We love this tip!]

6. “Skip the taxis – The taxis here are very, very expensive. They should be avoided at all costs.”

7. “Rent a car — Getting your own set of wheels is the most economical and convenient way to get around to the far parts of the island. Not renting one was my biggest mistake when I visited Curacao.”

Gay-Friendly Curacao


Did you know Curacao is a growing LGBTQ destination?

Travel experts credit its open, accepting, and all-around relaxed attitude of the island. In fact, we just concluded our second-annual Pride Festival in September, with more events on the way.

Gay Travel had this to say:

8. “There is no gay neighborhood and only one gay bar on the island - Lyric’s - but Curacao seems to pride itself on being welcoming and inclusive. Curacao has opened its arms to the LGBT community, with even its tourism board proudly proclaiming, ‘Being gay isn’t a weekend hobby, so feel free to visit any restaurant or bar anytime.’ This is a live-and-let-live kind of place so even without a gay scene Curacao is more than fulfilling. Curacao has 17 organizations in the International Gay & Lesbian Travel Association, possibly the most in the Caribbean.”

Eat in Curacao


Curacao’s food culture takes influence from the many, many nationalities of its residents. Forty-five of them, to be exact. The food culture’s dominant flavors are Dutch, Caribbean, and a splash of Indonesian, with staples like meats (chicken, beef, goat) and tropical fruits and vegetables (papaya, coconut, banana leaves, cactus) rounding out the plates.

Here are two blogger-recommended places to try:

9. “My tip would be to have lunch at Plasa Bieu. It is definitely a place where you can experience a lot of the Curacao culture in just an hour or two. Island visitors can see how locals interact with each other, hear Papiamentu being spoken and of course taste some delicious local food. I personally love to order some "stoba" (stew). There are all kinds of variety of stoba. So dig in and enjoy.”

--From local and Curacao expert Sheedia Jansen

10. “Located on a small horse farm, Equus exudes a rustic simplicity that’s perfect for kicking off the weekend in a relaxed style. There’s a maybe a dozen candlelit outdoor picnic tables situated around a brick fire pit where the owner is grilling cubes of chicken and beef on skewers. In the corner you’ll find a bar offering buckets of local beer and a tasty wine selection.

As for the food, there is only one choice to make: chicken or beef. There’s no menu. No plates. No forks and knives. In fact, you eat with your hands, pulling grilled meat off a hot skewer and sucking the juices right off your fingertips.”

[Equus is open just one day a week: Friday.]

--Rachelle of The Travel Bite

For more tips and (affordable) restaurant suggestions, check out this entry from our Curacao blog.

Drink in Curacao


Likely you’ve heard of the spirit that shares our island’s namesake. Curacao liqueur is made from the dried peel of the native laraha citrus fruit, and has a distinctive orange bite.

But perhaps more important than the drink you order is the place where you sip it.

11. “When it comes to resort beach bars, the Boardroom Beach Bar at the Curacao Marriott Beach Resort & Emerald Casino is among the best. On an island filled with well-known beach bars and beach clubs, the Boardroom Beach Bar does resort beach bars the right way. Resembling anything but the stuffy confines of a boardroom (somewhere I will probably never take a seat), it retains the rustic, simple beach-bar vibe we all love, complete with wooden swings as bar stools, while offering the perfect spot to sip a cocktail, relax and enjoy the stunning Curacao sunsets.”

-- Beach Bar Bums

Best Photo Op in Curacao


And we’d be remiss not to mention iconic Willemstad, the port that launched a thousand camera shutters. Go ahead and join the tradition; you’re all but guaranteed a lovely photograph no matter the time of day.

“At first glance, you might think the multi-chromatic painted town of Willemstad is a fabricated tourist attraction. It’s not. It’s genuine. Years of history and Dutch influence mixed with Caribbean flair have produced a vibrantly colorful port that is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.”

– Rachelle of The Travel Bite

Armed with these tips, we hope you’ll be able to really dig into the lovely island of Curacao.

If you’re looking for the perfect place to stay, our seafront vacation rental property provides luxury accommodations that are far from cookie-cutter.

Go ahead and have a look around, and contact us with questions or to book your stay at Villa Seashell!

Interested in staying with us? Contact us for information about our oceanfront villa, one of the nicest Curacao vacation rentals.


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