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Willemstad

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Willemstad is the capital and largest city of Curaçao. The city center and the waterfront is inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List.

Understand

Willemstad is mostly a destination for cruise ship tourists who usually spend one, max. two days there. Prices in bars, restaurants and shops tend to be very high and the originality and quality of products sold is often questionable - especially in the main tourist district Punda. But by comparing prices and using happy hours (usually 1h per bar, sometimes between 4pm and 8pm) costs can be reduced considerably.

Cocaine and cannabis is offered to tourists pretty openly, but a friendly "no, thank you" is sufficient to be left alone.

Districts

  • Punda: The historic city center, today the main destination for tourists, has lots of shops and restaurants.
  • Otrabanda: Residential neighborhood just across St Annabaai from Punda, connected by the Queen Emma bridge and a ferry. The rif fort and mega pier are on Otrabanda's side of St. Annabaai. Some restaurants and fast food joints line up on St Annabaai, lots of shops targeted at locals can be found along Breedestraat.
  • Scharloo: Scharlooweg, between Van Radersstraat and Bargestraat, was the main avenue of Jewish merchants at the end of the 19th century.
  • Brievengat and Gosie: Residential neighborhoods at the northern end of Willemstad.
  • Buena Vista - Gasparitu: A residential, suburbian district built for employees of the refinery.
  • Santa Maria: Residential neighborhood between Hato airport and the refinery.
  • Suffisant: Residential neighborhood between Santa Maria (to its west) and Brievengat (to its east).

Get in

By boat

Cruise ships moor either at Otrabanda's mega pier or at the entrance to the harbor - all mooring locations are within easy walking distance to the main tourist attractions.

By bus

Since Willemstad is the capital of Curacao one can take a bus from any part of the island.

By plane

  • 1 Curaçao International Airport (Hato International Airport CUR IATA formerly Dr. Albert Plesman International Airport), Plaza Margareth Abraham, ☎ +599 9 888-0101. is a 10 minute car ride from the city center. Buses from the airport leave roughly every hour during daytime; taxis cost between USD20 and USD60, depending on time of day, ability to haggle and destination.

Get around

The main tourist destination, the district of Punda, can be covered on foot easily (and much faster than by car).

Regular buses are cheap but they don't serve many points in Willemstad.

Shared taxis are inexpensive and flexible about the route they take. The main shared taxi spot in Punda is just behind the floating market.

Regular taxis are expensive, renting a car is usually the cheaper option if one wants to visit the various beaches in and around Willemstad.

While it is possible to get to all places by bicycle it is not advised for inexperienced riders since dedicated bike lanes are rare, cars tend to speed and the always blowing wind and slight but long elevations can be strenuous for untrained people.

See

  • 1 Museum Kura Hulanda, Klipstraat 9, ☎ +5999 434 7765, e-mail: museum@kurahulanda.com. Monday through Saturday 9:30 AM to 4:30 PM. This anthropological museum chronicles the African slave trade as well as the cultures of Curaçao. Entry: $10.
  • Maritime Museum, ☎ +5999 465-2327. Open Tu-Sa 9AM-4PM.
  • Queen Emma Bridge (a.k.a "The Swinging Old Lady"), Willemstad. A floating pontoon bridge that links the "Punda" (Point Side) and the "Otrobanda" (Other Side) of the Willemstad across the Sint Annabaai Channel. You get to see the bridge open and close to allow marine traffic into St. Anna Bay. (In the event the bridge is open for a prolonged time, there is a ferry service across the channel as well.) There is not a feasible way off the bridge if you're caught on it when it opens.
  • Queen Juliana Bridge, Willemstad. At 185 feet, this is highest bridge in the Caribbean (and one of the tallest bridges in the world.) The bridge overlooks St. Anna Bay as well as Willemstad. The observation platform has been closed to pedestrian traffic.

Do

  • Fort Amsterdam, Punda Side, Willemstad. The seat of the Netherlands Antilles, Fort Amsterdam sits at the mouth of the harbour at the end of the Sint Annabaai Channel on the point. The complex has restaurants, shops as well as the Governors Palace.
  • Fort Nassau, Willemstad. Fort Nassau was built on the hill to defend both St. Anna Bay as well as part of the city of Willemstad. The fort is open for tours and there is also a restaurant that overlooks the bay.
  • The Floating Market, Punda Side, Willemstad. The "floating market" is actually a mini boat fleet that comes in from Venezuela and sells fresh fish and fruit. You'll find it roughly one block north of the Queen Juliana Bridge on the east side of the harbour mouth.
  • Mikvé Israel-Emanuel Synagogue, ☎ +599 9 461-1067. The oldest synagogue in the western hemisphere, with a sand floor and museum containing ancient artefacts.

Buy

  • Luxury goods: Most shops in Punda specialize in luxury goods, though it is sometimes questionable whether they are real or fake. Prices are, despite huge tax breaks, not always competitive and one might get the same goods for cheaper in one's country of residence.
  • Blue Curacao: Historically just a double accident (the oranges from Spain did not grow well and were inedible and how the distillate of the peels once turned blue is a mystery - nowadays it is colored with food coloring) it's still the most famous local product and comparatively cheap.
  • Hammocks: Some merchants from Venezuela offer high quality hammocks for a good price (about USD20) at the floating market and in stalls in Otrabanda, along St. Annabaai.
  • Souvenirs: Since Curacao's culture is one of mixed heritage there are no typical local goods, most people settle on T-shirts instead.
  • Electronics: Along Breedestraat in Otrabanda several shops offer electronics for competitive prices, this is a good opportunity to replace broken gadgets without paying the premium asked for on cruise ships.

Note that one can pay in Antillean Guilders (Nafl) or USD everywhere, the exchange rate is fixed. Change might be given in guilders, though.

Eat

  • 1 Rozendaels, Penstraat 47, ☎ +599 9 461 8806, e-mail: info@rozendaels.com. Su-F 17:00-22:00. Local cuisine along with fusion dishes. Good value for money.

Drink

Sleep

Budget

  • Poppy Hostel, Mgr. Niewindtstraat 20, ☎ +59995109189, e-mail: info@poppyhostelcuracao.com. 5 rooms in a historical building in Otrabanda (10 minutes walk to Punda). No dorms, private rooms only; minimum stay 3 days. Shared kitchen, lounge and terrace; BBQ on site, 200m from a big supermarket. Very accommodating management and lots of tourist information. Airport transfer for half the price of a regular taxi and also easily reachable by an hourly bus from the airport. Fast WiFi. Since it is located in a residential area restaurants are much more affordable than the ones in touristy Punda. from USD30 per room.

Other

  • 1 Sunscape Curaçao Resort, Spa & Casino, Dr. Martin Luther King Blvd 78, Willemstad, ☎ +599 97367888. All inclusive beachfront resort. It includes three restaurants; Jimmy's Buffet(Continental and Island Dishes), Pastafari (Italian-style), and Munasan (Japanese Cuisine), plus a beach grill, and a children's snack bar.
  • Hilton Curaçao, John F Kennedy Boulevard PO Box 2133, Willemstad, ☎ +599 9 462-5000, fax: +599 9 462-5846, e-mail: curhi_sales@hilton.com.
  • Hotel Scharloo, van den Brandhofstraat 12, Willemstad, ☎ +599 94651012, e-mail: info@hotelscharloo.com. A new hotel in town, an old colonial building that has been totally restored.

Connect

Free WiFi is omnipresent; some networks require a signup with a social media account or an email address.

Go next

All of Curacao: Every possible destination on Curacao can easily be done as a day-trip. With your own car or a taxi you can reach the southernmost point in 20 minutes, the northernmost point in 40 minutes.

Travel Like a Local - Map of Willemstad: The Most Essential Willemstad (Curacao) Travel Map for Every Adventure

Maxwell Fox

Get Ready For The Adventure Of A Lifetime!

Are you planning your next vacation abroad and you’re ready to explore? Do you want to be prepared for everything? Are you ready to experience every new place you visit just like a local? Well, with this amazing Willemstad (Curacao) travel map you’re all set and ready to go!

The Willemstad (Curacao) map was carefully designed to give you amazing results and make traveling easier than ever.

We make sure to constantly update our info to give you the most relevant and accurate information, so you will never get confused or frustrated during your Willemstad (Curacao) trip.

The map is very detailed and it will not only give you all the available roads and routes, but also the essential information to make your Willemstad (Curacao) vacation unforgettable.

In the map you can see all the available means of transport, bus stops and routes so you can always know how to get everywhere.

And because we know that a vacation is not only about the roads and busses, the map gives you many options for eating, drinking and having a good time!

We carefully marked all the restaurants, bars and pubs so you can always find one that is nearby.

In the Willemstad (Curacao) map you will also find the best places to go shopping, the most famous and must-see sights, churches and more.

And if an emergency comes up, there are markings of police stations and hospitals everywhere for your convenience.

Each kind of marking has a different color so you can easily navigate around the map and find exactly what you’re looking for within seconds.

The city is also organized in sections so you can better find your way around.

So what are you waiting for? Pack your bags, get your map and let’s get started!

Just Click “Add To Cart Now”

The Complete Travel Guide Curacao

Elke Verheugen

The large outdoor travel guide with 140 pages is colorful throughout and offers many valuable information and real insider tips, because the author has been living on the island for many years and knows exactly where to go.

This guide is written for all who love the sea but also for individualists and independent explorers, because Curacao offers so much more than just sun and beach.

In Part A you will find everything you need to know about the island of Curacao.

Part B describes the capital Willemstad and the unique UNESCO World Heritage Site, the sights and all destinations. In addition, you will find information about the big events, street parties and other events on Curacao. Read about the best restaurants, the best beach bars and the hottest clubs. Part B also informs you about shopping on Curacao and provides average price information.

In Part C you can learn more about

- The tropical and exotic flora and fauna

- The two major national parks Curacao

- The colorful architecture, the villas and the forts

In addition, there is all the important information about outdoor sports and recreational opportunities that can be done on land.

Part D is dedicated exclusively to the sea, beaches and recreational water sports opportunities. Here you will find information, tips and important information about swimming, snorkelling and diving on Curacao. Furthermore, all beaches are described and you will find the descriptions and contact details of all the exciting water sports companies.

In the appendix there are descriptions of 3 wonderful apartment complexes and a certified dive center.

Travel Like a Local - Map of Willemstad (Black and White Edition): The Most Essential Willemstad (Curacao) Travel Map for Every Adventure

Maxwell Fox

Get Ready For The Adventure Of A Lifetime!

This is a Black and White edition of Travel Like a Local map book.

Are you planning your next vacation abroad and you’re ready to explore? Do you want to be prepared for everything? Are you ready to experience every new place you visit just like a local? Well, with this amazing Willemstad (Curacao) travel map you’re all set and ready to go!

In the map you can see all the available means of transport, bus stops and routes so you can always know how to get everywhere. And because we know that a vacation is not only about the roads and busses, the map gives you many options for eating, drinking and having a good time!

We carefully marked all the restaurants, bars and pubs so you can always find one that is nearby. In the Willemstad (Curacao) map you will also find the best places to go shopping, the most famous and must-see sights, churches and more. And if an emergency comes up, there are markings of police stations and hospitals everywhere for your convenience.

The city is also organized in sections so you can better find your way around.

So what are you waiting for? Pack your bags, get your map and let’s get started!

Just Click “Add To Cart Now”

Curacao For 91 Days

Michael Powell

Mike and Jürgen gave themselves three months to explore the small Caribbean island of Curaçao, and came away with some unforgettable memories and photographs. This book is a collection of their anecdotes and adventures from the island, as they tried to live like locals. 91 days was enough time to explore this small country thoroughly; Mike and Jürgen checked out almost every beach, visited the colonial Landhuizen and ventured out on a few hikes. Packed with helpful advice, restaurant tips, insights into the culture, and beautiful full-color photography, this book is a must for anyone planning a trip to Curaçao!

Berndtson & Berndtson Curacao Map (B&B Maps)

Berndtson & Berndtson

Laminated road and travel map in color of the island of Curacao. The map is indexed in five languages, including English, with five types of roads and paths, airports, national parks, beaches, hotels, plantation houses, golf courses, points of interest, yachting, windsurfing, shipwrecks, and scuba diving. Scale 1:85,000. Indexed insert Caribbean Islands, scale 1:7,000,000. Indexed insert Aruba, Bonaire, Curacao, scale 1:1,000,000. Indexed insert Willemstad and Suburbs, scale 1:35,000. Indexed insert Willemstad City, scale 1:7,500. Included are month-by-month charts of average daily high temperature, sea temperature, hours of sunshine and precipitation.

Otrobanda Section of Willemstad Curacao Journal: 150 page lined notebook/diary

Cool Image

A life worth living is worth recording, and what better place than this journal? These lined pages crave your scribbled notes, thoughts, ideas, experiences, and notions. Fill the lines, remember your life, don't lose your ideas, and keep reaching higher to live the best life you can. It all starts here, folks, but you'll need your own pen or pencil. Write on!

#Instawillemsta: A collection of pictures taken in and around Willemstad, the capital city of Curaçao.

Evert Jan Boon

#Instawillemsta is a collection of pictures taken in and around Willemstad, the capital city of Curaçao. A small, but beautiful island in the Caribbean. All photos where taken with an iPhone while walking through the various landscapes our island offers. If you enjoyed #Instawillemsta, please leave a nice review. I'd really appreciate it. Thnx!

Curacao Flag Journal: Curacao Travel Diary, Curacaoan Souvenir, lined Journal to write in

Country Flag Journals

Travel Diary Journal, Traveler's Notebook, Curacao Flag Diary for Fans of Curacao and for Curacaoan Patriots Great Curacao Gift, Present, Souvenir Book Blank neutral wide-ruled paper with a line at the top for the date to write down all of the magic moments and exciting adventures of your trip to Curacao. The blank diary contains 132 lined pages to write in your holiday experiences, unforgettable impressions and thoughts. No matter whether you're planning to visit Willemstad or Blue Bay, discover the floating Queen Emma Bridge, or enjoy the beaches - write your own travel diary and capture the happy moments of your trip to Curacao! The Travel Diary to write in is the perfect travel gift for friends and family planning a trip to Curacao, for anyone with Curacaoan roots or simply a great souvenir from your holiday or honeymoon in Curacao.

Blank Lined Curacao Flag Journal to write in for women and men, kids and teens. The small portable blank book with lined pages (6"x9") is light enough to carry in a bag or a backpack.

Perfectly sized at 6"x9" 132 Pages Softcover bookbinding Flexible Paperback Glossy cover design, Retro Look Flag Neutral wide-ruled paper with a line at the top for the date Ideal for taking notes, dreams, thoughts, memories, writing in as a diary, or giving as a gift

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