Curacao, part of the ABC islands [Aruba, Bonaire, Curacao], is a semi-autonomous island in the Kingdom of the Netherlands, having gained its constituency status in 2010. Curacao is located snugly between Aruba and Bonaire. The official language spoken is Dutch, although most local children are taught to speak Papiamentu in the home. The building have a very Dutch influence in its architecture, while the colors are decidedly Caribbean.
The colors of the city delighted me. I was told that back in the day, the Governor had mandated that all buildings must be painted in anything other than white because the stark bright buildings gave him a migraine. Ironically, it was later discovered that he was also the only major paint distributor to the island. I don’t know if the story was true but I thought it was hilarious and colorful enough to accept it as fact.
I was lucky enough to spend a few days in Curacao in May. I had a few hours to walk around town, picking up on the vibrant local color, food, and people. I started off on the Otrabanda side of Willemstad, literally means, “The Other Side” in the local language of Papiamentu. During my walk, I found this pathway leading up to St Anna’s Church. The stunning colors caught my eye.
I made my way over to Punda using the Queen Wilhemina Bridge. I was lucky enough to come across this random wall in an alley way. I wasn’t sure where it lead to or what the purpose was – which is probably why I was so charmed by it! Art for the sake of art.
Unfortunately, the sea air causes the paint to degrade and you have to repaint every year. After painting my teeny tiny home, I vowed never to paint again. I would have serious problems if I lived in Curacao. Apparently, this alleyway hasn’t had the love & attention it needed.
There’s so many charming pockets surrounded by poverty. This little park was surrounded by half torn down buildings and uneven pavements.
The river on the Punda side is lined with touristy restaurants and shops, none of which were very appealing to me…even if they had been open on a Sunday.
I had thought to share my photos of the produce market on the river, the Floating Market, where the Venezuelans sailed up to Curacao to sell their fresh fruits and vegetables during the week; and of the Old Market, Plasa Bieu, where I had the most delectable goat stew; and of a Dinah Veeris herb garden where she makes soaps, teas, and herbal remedies [and where, it turns out, that I somehow purchased a love potion]; but darned if I didn’t DELETE all the photos on the entire card. I suffered a little death the day I discovered my blunder. I still tear up a bit when I think about it.
That of course leaves it up to you, dear reader, to go forth and visit this magical and beautiful Island. They will welcome you with open arms!