Curacao is one the Netherlands Antilles Islands, located just off the coast of Venezuela. Dutch and South American influences infuse the architecture and culture of this intriguing island. Explore the beautiful towns of Curacao to find out more about this fascinating heritage.
Of course, the highlight of many a Curacao cruise is relaxing on one of the island’s heart-stoppingly beautiful beaches, where icing-sugar sand is lapped by clear blue waters. The northern coast is decidedly more rugged, with a dramatic, windswept coastline. The island is also known for its salt flats, where pink flamingos paddle in the shallows.
Popular Ports in Curacao Island
The island’s only port is located in Willemstad, Curacao island’s capital, which offers a piece of Holland in the Caribbean. The downtown area and the harbour-front are lined with vividly coloured Dutch-gabled houses, and bisected by a network of canals. The town’s intriguing mixture of architectural styles has even earned it a UNESCO status.
One of the best ways to explore the city is to take a trolley train tour. You’ll pass the stunning Pietermaai Cathedral, and Bolo di Bruit, a building known as the wedding cake house because of its white decorations. You’ll also catch sight of Fort Amsterdam, an impressive 300-year-old fort that guards the harbour.
What are the best cruise ships for a Curacao Island cruise?
A trip to the Caribbean tops many bucket lists. If you’re having the holiday of a lifetime you need to make sure you travel in style. Here are two choices of liner that will help you make the most of your Curacao Island cruise.
The stylish Marella Explorer offers you the best in pocket-friendly luxury. Families can enjoy the activities on the Sport and Family deck, while teenagers will love their dedicated hang out spot, Sturmfrei. Adults can get away from it all at the expansive spa or on The Veranda, an adults-only deck complete with Balinese day beds and cocoon chairs. The whole family will be blown away by the choice of food on offer at the 10 restaurants – from sushi to tapas, pizza to pan-Asian, there’s something for even the fussiest eaters to tuck into.
Freedom of the Seas
Royal Caribbean International’s Freedom of the Seas gives you the freedom to have the Curacao cruise of your dreams, be it active or indulgent. Kids and adults alike will love the 3D cinema, indoor ice-skating rink, and trying out the unique FlowRider surf simulator, which makes waves with real water. You can even drop the children off at the kids’ club and enjoy relaxing at the over 18’s solarium or in the spa. There are lots of wining and dining choices on-board, including a Mexican restaurant, a pizza joint and several fine dining options.
Shore Excursion Ideas
With these fantastic shore excursions it’s easy to get out and about, exploring the island on land or by sea.
Highlights of Curacao Island
Tick off three of the island’s most important attractions on this tour. The first is the Curacao Museum in Otrabanda, decorated in the style of a 19th century mansion so you really understand what life was like back then. There’s also an exhibition about the island’s geology and a gallery of contemporary art.
The second attraction on the list are the Hato Caves. These subterranean caverns are millions of years old, and studded with unusual limestone formations. The last stop on the trip is the Chobolo Liqueur Factory, where you’ll see how the island’s famous Blue Curacao liqueur is produced.
Jet Ski Coastal Adventure
The more active members of your group will love this adrenaline-fuelled shore excursion. You’ll strap into your safety vest and head out into the Caribbean sea on your jet ski. An experienced guide will lead you on an intrepid journey down the southern coast, past secluded white-sand bays.
You’ll also pass the Spanish water lagoon, the opulent neighbourhood of the rich and famous. After an action-packed ride you’ll stop for a well-earned rest on a stunning beach.
Curacao Country Drive
Discover some of Curacao’s more offbeat attractions on a bus tour around the island. You’ll begin at the Old Labor House and Museum, where you can attend a traditional song and dance performance and try on island headgear.
Travel northward to Boka Tabla National Park to marvel at dramatic waves crash against rugged limestone rock formations. You’ll then head to the more sheltered Knip Beach, a picturesque swathe of pure-white sand and clear-blue waters, where there’s time to swim and relax. A final stop is at the Jan Kok salt lakes, where flamingos paddle in the water.