Exploring Downtown Willemstad, Curacao!

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Elegant, timeless photography in Vermont, New England, & destinations.

Exploring Downtown Willemstad, Curacao!


If you've been peeping my social media lately, you know that I just got back from a week long vacation in the beautiful Curacao (an island in the Caribbean sea off the coast of Venezuela) with my partner and our best friends, Kelsey and James! It was the trip of a lifetime, and I was lucky enough to walk around the city there to take some photos with my camera.

(One lesson I learned as a newbie traveler: don't NOT take the photo just because you don't have your camera with you. It's better to have that moment captured than to be a snob about not having your full frame with you!)

I was awe-struck when we arrived at Mambo Beach, which was a short walk from our gorgeous Airbnb. The white sand, warm breeze, and dancehall music flooding the speakers nicely complimented the pina colada I ordered from our cabana bed. We lazily lounged, ordered drinks, and wandered off to find some fresh fish that first day. Sunday nights are popular clubbing nights at Mambo Beach, and there was a beach dance party overlooking the Caribbean Sea, complete with some pretty epic drink specials.

While on the small island, we explored various beaches, each of them looking like something off of a carefully-curated Instagram feed. Some of my favorites:

Lagun

Piscado (we saw sea turtles while snorkeling here!)

Knip

Jan Thiel

Kenepa

Grandi

and Mambo Beach, of course. Snorkeling was a cheap and fun activity on the island, where you could swim with sea turtles, parrot fish, and many other schools of fish in the reefs.

It would be remiss of me to not mention the FOOD on this island. At the Old Market in the main city, we ate some pretty amazing goat stew with local fish and papaya, all of which came highly recommended to us. A cuisine highlight was stopping by Jaanchie's, a restaurant off the beaten path on the west side of the island. It's open-air style with an aviary outside was gorgeous, and Jaanchie himself was kind to us and warned us that the iguana soup was an aphrodisiac. We obviously had to try it. It was bony and difficult to eat, but extremely flavorful. We went to Fort Nassau the final night of our stay. Torches lit the stone steps up to the 18th century fort, which had a 360-degree view of the island. The rooftop view was spectacular, and the escargot we ordered was a fabulous way to end our trip to Curacao. (By the way, they do weddings at Fort Nassau. ANYBODY WANT TO ELOPE AND HIRE ME??)

Venturing into the main city, Willemstad, was always super fun. If you follow my photography style, you'll know that I am always looking for a light-colored wall to reflect light nicely. Well, Willemstad EXCLUSIVELY had colorful walls. The island's Dutch architecture had me stopping every three feet to take a photo. Willemstad is famous for the world's only remaining floating pontoon bridge, which moves every time a boat needs to go by. It's comparable to the stairs in Hogwarts-- when it moves, you just have to ride the bridge and wait for it to get back to place in order to finish crossing it.

Below are some of the photos I took the last morning of our trip to Curacao.

I'm taking suggestions as to where to travel next (Costa Rica and Florence, Italy are the two most recommended to me so far), so if YOU have a travel destination to recommend, please comment below or on Facebook! :)