Top Things To Do In Curaçao

Top Things to do in Curaçao

The island of Curaçao, in the Southern Caribbean, is a little slice of paradise. Think jaw-dropping beaches, crystal clear waters, colourful architecture and gorgeous weather year-round. Need any more convincing?!

This winter, when I was in desperate need of vitamin sea, I booked an impromptu trip to Curaçao and couldn’t have been more excited. I’d been having this Dutch Antilles island on my mind for a while and jumped on the occasion when Air Canada began a direct route from Montreal during the winter months. I packed my bags and off I went with a definite intent on seeing the most I could of the island in a week. Though not very vast, the island has a lot to offer and I carefully planned a few activities to make sure I could see and do it all.

In 2015 named Curaçao a must-visit destination for the year. When they heard about my trip, they asked me to share some of my favorite experiences. Here are my top things to do in Curaçao:


Curaçao boasts some spectacular beaches, mostly located on the island’s South Coast where the sand is pure white and the waters are crystal clear. Rent a car for the day and hop from pretty beach to pretty beach and you’ll be rewarded with some jaw-droppingly gorgeous coves. The waters are calm, clear and inviting and I bet you’ll be mesmerized by the colors of the ocean as the sun hits the waves.

Top Things to do in Curaçao

Exploring Willemstad, the Historic capital

I’ve visited my share of cute Caribbean towns but I must admit none charmed me as much as Willemstad, Curaçao’s capital. Pretty, lively and colourful, this walkable city is a real gem. Dating from the 1600’s, the city center and its harbour entrance have been designated a UNESCO world heritage site, and history is palpable at every turn you take in the city’s narrow alleys. I spent a whole day wandering the streets of Punda and Otrobanda, crossing Sint Anne Bay on the Swinging Old Lady, the pontoon bridge connecting both neighborhoods. With plenty of restaurants, duty-free shops, art galleries, pretty architecture and historic landmarks, Willemstad is a wonderful port town to explore.

Top Things to do in Curaçao

 Christoffel National Park

Near Westpunt, on the island’s West part, is Christoffel National Park, almost 2000 hectares surrounding the island’s highest point, Christoffel Mountain.  The park is ideal for hiking, offering eight trails and plenty of opportunities to spot flora and fauna during your visit. You can also tour old plantations, join a pick-up safari, or even camp there.

Marvel at the architecture

If you like the pastel-colored houses of Willemstad, head to Pietermaai district, right next door to Punda. I found the area to be less touristy than downtown, filled with cute small shops, boutique hotels and laid-back restaurants. The whole neighborhood is pleasantly shaded and Dutch colonial style is everywhere, making it my favorite area in town.

Top Things to do in Curaçao

 Snorkelling and diving

Curaçao is a diver’s paradise, with more than 40 diving sites around the island. As for snorkelling, most beaches on the West end give incredibly easy access to the coral reefs, so you won’t be needing to join an excursion to explore the amazing marine life. With near-perfect visibility, the island’s reputation in terms of excellent diving and snorkelling conditions is world-renown.

Top Things to do in Curaçao

Day-trip to Klein Curaçao

No trip to Curaçao is complete without an outing to the deserted island of Klein Curaçao, some 40+ km away. Home to a gazillion hermit crabs and dinosaur-sized iguanas, the island makes for a wonderful day of playing Robinson Crusoé in an out-of-this-world décor. You can reach the island with the friendly folks at Miss Ann Boat Trips, who will organize hotel pick-up and drop-off, delicious breakfast and lunch buffets and a snorkelling excursion, and make sure you’re having the time of your life, which I did!


Look out for street art

You wouldn’t think to look for street art on a tropical island, right? Well, Curaçao happens to have a thriving street art scene! Plenty of murals have been painted by street artists in Otrobanda, amidst the city’s ultra-colored buildings. Local artist Garrick Marchena has painted some impressive murals in and around Willemstad, which are strikingly realistic. I spent an hour looking for this specific mural, which I found tucked away in a corner off the main streets. It was totally worth the search!


Beach clubs

Curaçao is known for its great beach clubs, each having a more exotic name than the next. From chic Saint Tropez in Pietermaai to Zanzibar in Jan Thiel to Madero in Bapor Kibra, you’ll have the luxury of choice. They are the perfect places to go to be seen, have a drink or two, dance the night away or just to relax on a lounge chair and swim in alluring infinity pools.

Top Things to do in Curaçao

I hope you enjoyed this post which was written in collaboration with Have you been to Curaçao? Would you recommend a trip to this Caribbean island?

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Top things to do in Curaçao




  • Reply May 29, 2016

    Charles McCool

    Such vivid colors. I have not visited either of the ABCs and this is enticing me to do so.

  • Reply May 29, 2016


    Thanks for introducing the country to me, I was not aware of this island because there are so many in the Caribbean Sea!
    The buildings are colorful. @

    • Reply June 14, 2016


      Hi Kenny, my pleasure! There are a lot of Caribbean islands, but I find that each one is special in its own way. Definitely recommend Curaçao for the colorful architecture!

  • Reply May 30, 2016

    maria milea

    Curacao looks amazing! Such a beautiful and tranquil place. It’s definitely on my to-visit list! thank you for sharing!

    • Reply June 14, 2016


      My pleasure Maria! It was indeed very beautiful, I can’t recommend it enough!

  • Reply June 3, 2016


    We visited the ABC islands last August. Loved them all. Curacao is a beautiful place to visit. We went to the caves and toured historic Willemstad.

    • Reply June 14, 2016


      Cool! Didn’t visit the caves but spent a day in Willemstad, photographing the architecture. I’ve yet to visit Aruba, but can say for sure that Bonaire and Curaçao were extraordinary!

  • Reply June 14, 2016

    Art Klep

    Hi Cath,
    Great blog post with excellent tips.
    As a budget accommodation owner and cruise ship tour guide i can confirm your sugestions.
    A few days ago i posted an exhaustive guide detailing the top5 things to bring on a visit to our Dushi shores.
    Have a look here:
    Readers can also find more tips based on my 16 years of coming to Curaçao.

    • Reply June 14, 2016


      Thanks for sharing Art!

  • Reply June 15, 2016


    Looks beautiful I especially like the colourful houses

    • Reply June 27, 2016


      It was stunning!

  • […] where we would spend many late afternoons relaxing after a long day of exploring the island and trying out everything Curaçao has to […]

  • […] A daytrip to Klein Curaçao with Miss Ann Boat Trips is definitely a must-do when visiting Curaçao! […]

  • […] We headed to the Dutch island of Curaçao for a week-long of fun in the sun. We rented a car to explore the island from top to bottom, discovered crazy pretty architecture and to-die for beaches, and met […]

  • Reply September 29, 2018

    Robert Boggs

    I was here back in the 90’s with the Navy ship and we went to the casino there where we had someone from the ship won a lot of money. The beaches that I can remember was beautiful and the houses at the pier that are different color was very nice.

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