According to wholevehicles, Curaçao is located in the southern part of the Caribbean, which was part of the Netherlands Antilles until 10-10-2010. Since then, the country has been an independent part of the Kingdom of the Netherlands. Curacao has been inhabited for thousands of years, the first inhabitants of the country were mainly Arawaks who lived on several Caribbean islands. In 1499 it was the Spaniard Alonso de Ojeda who was the first European to set foot here. The Spaniards called Curaçao a useless island because there was little or nothing to get and therefore left it alone for a long time. It was the WIC that used the island for its slave trade in the 17th century and would continue to do so until they went bankrupt. In 1791 the island finally became a Dutch colony. Thanks to its deep natural seaport, Curaçao is one of the most prosperous countries in the Caribbean. The average gross income here is a lot higher than on many other Caribbean islands.
In addition to import and export, the tourist industry is of great importance here. Every year about 300,000 tourists come here, who together provide a large part of the national income. Most tourists come here to enjoy a wonderful sun, sea and beach holiday. During the school holidays it is often quite expensive to go on holiday to Curacao due to the more expensive airline tickets, but during the other months you can sometimes fly to Curacao fairly cheaply. The beaches here are beautiful white and the sea is wonderfully warm and beautiful blue. The beautiful marine life around the island attracts many divers and snorkelers to the island. In some places you can swim with dolphins under supervision.
The best time to travel to Curaçao is the first half of the year. It is mainly sunny in the period from February to June, with a small chance of rain. In the second half of the year, the relative humidity increases and the chance of rain or thunderstorms increases. The last three months are the wetter season.
Curaçao has much more to offer than just sun, sea and sand. There are several museums, a marine aquarium and several buildings from the colonial period. Fort Amsterdam and Fort Beekenbrug are good examples of this. However, the most famous colonial houses can be found in the natural harbor of Willemstad. These pastel colored houses have become the symbol for Curaçao. The Queen Emma Bridge in Willemstad is a typical pontoon bridge, but this is the only floating wooden swing bridge in the world. This bridge has been car-free since the 1970s. This bridge connects the districts of Punda and Otrobanda. In the caves of Hato also known as the Hato Caves one can admire beautiful stalagmites and stalactites. Some of these dripstones have been given special nicknames. Furthermore, there are many beautiful bays on the island such as the Caracasbaai, the Santa Marthabaai, the Piscaderabaai, the Cornelisbaai and so on. The seas around Curacao are very popular with divers. The different coral reefs are especially beautiful here. In a few years’ time, one of the first commercial space airports should be built on Curaçao. During this short space journey, one can experience the feeling of weightlessness after a short training.
Despite the beautiful nature and rich colonial past of the island, Curaçao has only one entry on the UNESCO World Heritage List. Since 1997, the historic area of Willemstad has been on the UNESCO World Heritage List, this concerns the old city center and the port.
Curaçao has a tropical savanna climate with many warm sunny days throughout the year. The average daytime temperature here is just above 30 degrees Celsius throughout the year. In the evening and night it cools down by about 6 degrees. Most precipitation falls here in the winter period, the average precipitation here is 500 millimeters annually on the low side for a tropical climate. In the second half of the year you have a chance of tropical storms and hurricanes. This chance of this is relatively small as most tropical storms ignore the island. Once every few years a tropical storm hits a country and this immediately causes major problems. Think of destroyed houses and flooded streets. The island is under the constant influence of the trade winds. This cooling wind also ensures that the island is very popular with wind and kite surfers. The sea temperature here is just below 30 degrees Celsius all year round, which makes it extremely suitable for diving and snorkeling.
Curaçao is the largest island of the ABC islands that belong to the Leeward Islands. The island is located in the southern part of the Caribbean Sea. The largest city on the island is Willemstad which is also the capital of the island. The metropolitan area of this place occupies about a third of the island. Off the coast of Curaçao lies the uninhabited island of Klein Curaçao. The only building on this island is the front tower. There are several natural harbors on Curaçao, the most important of which is the Schottegat which is located in the Sint Anna Bay. This Sint Annabaai divides Willemstad into two parts. There are no rivers, lakes or other natural freshwater sources on Curaçao. In the northwestern part there are two national parks, the Christoffel Park and the Shete Boka National Park. The southern part of the island is known for its beautiful white beaches. With a height of 375, the Sint Christoffelberg is the highest point on the island and the second highest point in the Kingdom of the Netherlands.
There are no special travel advice for Curaçao, only for travelers coming from a yellow fever area, vaccinations against this are mandatory. The trade in both soft and hard drugs is strictly prohibited here, as is the import and/or export thereof. When you return to the Netherlands, there is a chance that you will have to undergo a 100% check, your suitcase will be turned inside out and you will be subjected to a body scan.
Travelers from Europe do not need to request special papers to visit Curaçao. However, you must be in possession of a valid passport, a return ticket and a confirmed hotel reservation. A visa is required for people who want to stay in the country for more than 3 months.
|Phone (country code)||5999|
|Language(s) (official)||Dutch and Papiamento|
|Language(s) (colloquial)||Dutch, Papiamento, English and sometimes also Spanish|
|Time difference summer||in Curaçao it is 6 hours earlier than in the Netherlands|
|Time difference winter||in Curaçao it is 5 hours earlier than in the Netherlands|
|Daylight Saving Time Control||no|
|Currencies||Antillean guilder, but this will eventually be replaced by the Caribbean guilder|