Willemstad, Curacoa Cruises
UNESCO-protected Willemstad on Curaçao has narrow-gabled, 18th century houses in cool pastel shades, juxtaposed with intense yellows and royal blues. It’s akin to a carbon copy of Amsterdam, but with the gorgeous Caribbean climate thrown in.
The town has a number of intriguing museums worth visiting: the Curaçao Museum, the Maritime Museum and Kura Hulanda, which tells the history of the local slave trade. At Scharlooweg 77 is the house known as the 'Wedding Cake', a near perfect example of Dutch colonial architecture.
Willemstad is actually divided into two sections, Otrobanda and Punda, and both boast a rich, cultural heritage. They are connected by the Queen Emma Bridge, also known as the Swinging Old Lady, a floating, pontoon bridge powered by diesel, which swings open daily to allow ships in and out of the harbour.
Situated not far from the waterfront, the crowded streets of Punda are packed with smart galleries and shops, while nearby Pietermaai is alive with cool restaurants, bars and clubs. The island’s fantastic beaches are a true delight, with Santa Barbara Beach probably the pick of them all.