Thursday, May 3, 2012

Exploring the Caribbean island of Curacao

It is so much fun to take the ferry boat over to the main shopping areas on Curaçao by ferry or by walking over the bridge.When ships come through the harbor, the floating bridge opens. The Queen Emma Pontoon Bridge, in the middle of the city opens frequently during the day, to allow access to one of the busiest ports in the world.

If you book the Hyatt on Expedia you can pay as little as $900 for 3 nights including a flight on American Airlines to Curacao. Four nights is $1,179 includes flight + hotel, taxes & fees

curacao-pontoon bridge

I enjoyed shopping at the duty free shops in this Caribbean city. They even host a Fashion week on the 21st of May at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Curacao. Curacao has a duty free shopping area in the harbor, you must show your passport and airline ticket to get the deals. Renaissance Mall & Rif Fort is also a good place to shop with stores offering local and designer brands.

On our last trip to Curacao, we stayed at the Curacao Marriot and Casino and an elite upgrade got us a stunning ocean view. The Hotel needs a renovation but you can get a low rate. It's in a similar price range of about $130 a night as the  Hilton. Its nice to have a drink at a bar at the fort next to the Renaissance Curacao Resort.

Curaçao became a Dutch island in 1634 as evidenced by the name of the capital, Willemstad ! it could not be more of a Dutch name.The island in the southern Caribbean Sea is a part of the group known as the ABC Islands alongside Aruba and Bonaire. This trio is located near Venezuela. I did take a boat once from Caracas to Curacao,  but it is probably not advisable because tensions between Venezuela and Holland have been mounting since Hugo Chavez is paranoid about any unfavorable criticism on his human rights violations. From its home base in Curacao, Insel Air connects the Caribbean region by offering affordable service if you want to go island hopping or you could take the ferry to Aruba. Spirit Airlines have flights from Fort Lauderdale (FLL) to Aruba (AUA) but it is very difficult to get the low fare that they offer with their $9 fare club. Spirit Airlines announced today,  that they are going to hike some carry on bag fees to $100 each bag on all flights. United Airlines can work out cheaper for elite members when you factor in that MileagePlus Premier Silver and Star Alliance® Silver members get one checked bag free.

Willemstad is one of the Caribbean’s few UNESCO World Heritage cities. Vivid, brightly-colored,Yellow, pink and blue faded paint on gabled buildings showcase Dutch colonial architecture displaying their heredity  from The Netherlands.
Diving, Snorkeling, or just relaxing at the beach or Spa makes a great holiday. you have to experience ATABEI Spa at the Hyatt Hotel, where you can relax in the best, possible luxurious way. The average air temperature is 82º Fahrenheit (30ºC) and 75% humidity.There is a constant trade wind that generally makes the evenings cool and comfortable. It's very windy  - make sure you hold on to your hat, mine turned into a kyte and flew away.

In the evening, fine restaurants and an exiting nightlife are all nestled within and around the historic setting of the Rif fort, a 19th century landmark high above the harbor.
The legal drinking age is 18 and the legal age for gambling in a casino is 21. The Netherlands Antilles has its own drug laws which are not as lenient as they are in Holland. This is fortunate for me because, although I have never smoked pot or cigarettes or anything! I have become  violently ill from second hand weed smoke in Holland.

Don’t forget the mosquito repellant! no where is perfect …….

1 comment:

  1. the island i like to visit is Gorda on virgin the Baths is at the west end and by far the best snorkeling spot. you can arrage a snorkeling trip by boat from your resort.The us and British virgin islands Trunk Bay on St. John is the most popular scenic beach.