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Discovering Otrobanda, Curacao

This is another post about the Breedestraat in Otrobanda. Otrobanda means ‘the other side’ and Breedestraat translates to Broadway in English. You will probably recognize these Dutch roots in New York too. New York used to be called New Amsterdam before the Dutch traded it for Surinam with the English. And of course New York has it's Breedestraat too, now called Broadway. Surinam has been a Dutch colony since that time till the eighties. Surinam was very important during World War II for their aluminum, as the allied forces used that for their warplanes. So far some history lessons.

The Breedestraat is the main shopping area of Otrobanda and very authentic for the whole island of Curacao. You can walk the street, it’s like a mile, and it can be a hot walk. You can do a lot of window-shopping in the Breedestraat. You will mostly see only Curacao people in this street which are all very friendly and probably a little surprised to see you as a tourist.

When you approach the end of the shops you will find a nice place to have a decent coffee with some local pastries. A family from Cali, Colombia, has a small bread and pastries shop, with a few tables where you can enjoy their coffee or other drinks with their homemade treats. The shop is very open to the street, so you can enjoy watching the local people doing their things while having your coffee..

Cali Pan, the nice bakery for local bread and pastries, with a few tables to sit and relax.

Their shop is called ‘Cali Pan’, which means Cali bread, so the name says it as it is, no rocket science needed.

In Curacao you will find many people from Colombia or other South American countries owning small business. Overall the Curacao economy is better then the countries where they come from.

In Curacao savoury pastries are more common to take during a morning- or afternoon coffee break, rather than the sweet or dessert like treats which are more standard in the USA with coffee.

The interior of the Cali Pan shop, small and a cozy atmosphere.

You will be surprised by both the taste and the price of the pastries. In general you will see a big difference in price between the shops in Otrobanda compared to the Punda part of Willemstad. The latter being way more expensive probably because there are many more toursists in Punda than in Otorbanda.

So if you feel like doing some window-shopping and in the mean time experiencing the original Curacao, take some time to walk the Breedestraat.


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