A Mini Travel Guide to Curaçao
Curaçao is a destination for everyone. You can enjoy peace and quiet and go to the beach or choose to be active and explore all the beauty the island has to offer. Visit the saltpans of Jan Thiel or the Christoffel Park with the Christoffel Mountain or if you’d rather explore the culinary options try one of the many restaurants or the truk’i pans (food truck) that are located on almost every street corner. Curaçao is known as a party island because every night you can go out somewhere for a happy hour and some dancing.
Before the carnival festivities start the island has a tumba festival. During this festival several bands compete for the honor of having the official tumba song, which is played during the carnival festivities.
The most important parades are in February or March. There are some different parade, such as a children’s parade, teen parade and a parade with horses. The biggest is the Gran Marcha on Sunday and the Marcha Despedida (farewell parade) a few days later, usually on Tuesday night. During the carnival period there a many jump-ups and jump-ins that are held by the carnival groups.
On Curaçao, same as on Aruba and Bonaire, there is plenty of fresh fish on the menu. A special fish on the island is the Lionfish, which is openly hunted because they do not belong in our waters and threaten the coral and local fish. Stews like Carbi di Baca Stoba (beef), Cabrito Stoba (goat) and Galina Stoba (chicken) are served with white rice and beans (arroz moro) or corn flour cakes (funchi). The best snack by far is the pastechi, or a patty. They are available with cheese, chicken and meat.
If you want to enjoy great local cuisine, go to Jaanchi’s or Playa Forti at Westpunt, Marshe Bieuw in Punda, which offers traditional Kriyoyo cuisine, and Sea Side Terrace at the Martin Luther King Boulevard next to the Sunscape Resort.
Events with a foodie theme are more common as well. If you can check out restaurant week, Pietermaai Proeft or Flavors of Curaçao.
The local currency is the Antillean Guilder (Nafl.). The exchange rate is tied to the American dollar. In most places you can also pay with dollars, the well-known credit cards and travelers cheques.