Curacao attracts people from all over the world, but there’s a specific group of people that will love Curacao more than others: New Yorkers. At first glance this may seem unlikely, but hear us out. We have gathered 20 reasons why you, as a New Yorker, will feel right at home on our beautiful tropical island.
We have great weather year-round
When you go to Curacao there is absolutely no need for you to pack your coat and you can leave your umbrella collection at home as well. Curacao has great weather throughout the entire year. Even if it rains (which is quite rare) it won’t ever be cold. You have our word on this one.
Pietermaai is like the NY SoHo
There is a neighborhood on Curacao called Pietermaai. The Pietermaai District on Curacao is the Caribbean version of New York’s famous SoHo. Here you’ll find a variety of shops, cozy restaurants, unique buildings (both new and old) and people from all walks of life. We highly recommend getting lost in this colorful and friendly neighborhood. To New Yorkers it could very well be reminiscent of home.
We have white sandy beaches
No matter how much you imagine lying on a tropical beach, you’re still lying on grass in Central Park wearing your swimwear. It’s a little weird. Especially if you think about all the white sandy beaches that await on Curacao, not to mention the beautiful ocean that surrounds the island. Curacao equals white sandy beaches.
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Forget bagels, try a pastechi
New Yorkers have their bagel, but we have our pastechi. This versatile and delicious snack is part of daily life on Curacao. If it’s not, you should wonder whether you’re really living life to the fullest. You can eat your pastechi as breakfast, lunch, an appetizer or dessert – and remember, these are not mutually exclusive. Get your pastechi with cheese, chicken, minced meat or fish and forget about bagels. We have those too, by the way.
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Loads of culture
Much like New York, Curacao has a very rich and diverse culture. It is a melting pot of over 50 nationalities, with Afro-Caribbeans making up the majority of the population. Whatever art form you’re into, you will find plenty of it on Curacao. The streets are filled with art galleries, there’s (live) music wherever you go and there’s no escaping the smell of great local dishes being prepared. The people of Curacao love life and they love to celebrate while they can, which means there are many cultural events throughout the year. You will love the Curacao culture.
Curacao has rich history
Curacao’s history is as rich and great as its culture. It is very much worth your time to learn more about it while you’re here. There are many museums to visit and tours to take if you wish to learn more about the history of Curacao. There are also lots of hotels with a story, such as the oldest operational hotel on the island; the Avila Beach Hotel.
We have the best Coffee hotspots
Yes, we have good old Starbucks, but we also have a lot of cute coffee hotspots. “What’s the difference?”, you might ask. A. They are insanely instagrammable and B. are on unique locations! Like Number Ten (St. Rosaweg, located in a manor house Landhuis Bloemhof), which is very popular amongst locals with a much needed and mindful coffee fix. They are super instagrammable and serve a pretty great lunch, but you really have to make a reservation on beforehand. In addition, Beyglz (Scharloo) offers a good cup of coffee and is located right next to a colorful landscape of murals. Also awesome: Café Bonchi (Punda), Kafee 5999 (Zeelandia), Beans (Pietermaai) and Cafe Barista (Airport, Mahaai & Sambil).
You’ll love our colorful ‘skyline’ the Handelskade
The Handelskade is a famous location on Curacao. It is depicted in many paintings, photos and postcards. Rightfully so, because it’s a fantastic sight. Whether you look at it from the Queen Juliana Bridge or you go for a relaxing stroll on the Handelskade itself (there’s plenty to see and do), the Handelskade is definitely a must-see when you’re on Curacao.
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New York is rightfully known for its nightlife, but so is Curacao. With an increasing amount of restaurants, (beach) bars and clubs, Curacao’s nightlife is more vibrant than ever. And what's not to like about a (beach) party or bar with comfortable temperatures and that cozy Caribbean feel? Also, beer on Curacao is much cheaper than in New York (which is not that difficult, but still!), especially if you go during happy hours. This is definitely recommended, not only because of the cheap booze but also because it’s a lot of fun. Oh, and did we mention our Caribbean rum and Blue Curacao? Also, there are big EDM events once in a while, such as The Flying Dutch, the monthly Full Moon Party, Cafe Del Mar and Nachtwerk. Curacao was the stage for a serious set of famous DJ's such as Armin van Buuren, Hardwell, Afrojack, Sunnery James & Ryan Marciano.
We have the best tap water
Tap water in New York is good. However, you will be so excited about Curacao tap water as soon as you have taste it! It is as good as it gets and it’s perfectly drinkable. A local company uses seawater to produce very high-quality tap water. In fact, it’s better than the water you get in the US or Europe. There’s no need for you to buy bottled water, which helps reduce waste. It’s a win-win scenario!
We have tasty pizza too
Not to brag, but we seriously have very tasty pizza on Curacao. If only to compare to the delicious pizza you’re used to in New York, we strongly recommend eating pizza on Curacao at least once. We recommend Limoncello by the Sea, Osteria Rosso, Il Forno, Bella Italia and Tomatoes at the Beach amongst others. Some restaurants offer a cute romantic atmosphere or Pinterest-ish interior, others a wonderful sea view. Bella Italia is actually an ice cream store but believe you me, they make good pizzas and pastas with dough and sauce from scratch!
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Curacao is truly a culinary treat
You New Yorkers love good food, and food just happens to be one of Curacao’s many specialties. From fancy restaurants to culinary events and even special evenings with international Michelin chefs, which we know New Yorkers love, you will be amazed by familiar and new culinary treats. Come and visit the culinary events while your vacationing here: Curacao Culinair, Pietermaai Proeft, Vegan Food Fest, Hello Skálo & Flavors of Curacao are all worth a visit!
Didi Gregorius of the NY Yankees is from Curacao
If you’re a New Yorker, chances are you like baseball. If you do, you most likely root for the New York Yankees. So do we! Didi Gregorius and Hensley Meulens grew up on Curacao and they did good things for the NY Yankees. Did you know that we have a lot of baseball players in the MLB? Curacao is a very good supplier of Major League Players and we are very proud of it, just ask a local when you visit our island. There even is a documentary-film about it called Boys of Summer.
Our tourist attractions are nothing like the hectic Times Square
Times Square is like the antithesis of New York, yet it’s probably the most popular tourist spot of the entire city and perhaps even of the entire country. Understandably, you New Yorkers generally dislike being there. On the other side of that spectrum are the tourist attractions of Curacao: no huge crowds, no ridiculous prices and way more authenticity. By default, New Yorkers should love it.
You can also eat at food trucks here
You call them food trucks, we call them truck di pan and we have them for decades! Just like back home in New York, food trucks on Curacao often have the best food. Luckily, there are plenty of them as well. Some offer healthier food and drinks, others (read most of them) not so much. They do share one common trait: everything is delicious and they are open after 9 PM. The food trucks offering the grilled specialties open late in the evening until far after midnight. Prepare for the best late night meals and snacks and indulge the unique atmosphere with our locals.
From NYC’s Mixology scene to local cocktail bars
The biggest difference between NYC’s Mixology and cocktail bars on Curacao is the price you pay for your drink of choice. Quality wise, both are top notch. If you love cocktails, Caña Bar & Kitchen across the street from the Avila Beach Hotel is an absolute must. Caña also offers tasty ceviche and tacos. It will also look very good on your instagram wall.
We have farmers markets too
Curacao is home to many farmers. There are several farmers markets where they gather to sell their homemade, fresh and healthy products. We even have vegan food fests. Think of herbs, juices, fruits, plants, dishes and soups. These markets are a fun way to get acquainted with the delicious fresh products of Curacao and to mingle with locals. Some restaurants (like Restaurant The Pen) offer a from Farm to Fork dinner concept too.
Come as you are, everyone is welcome
Whoever you are, Curacao welcomes you with open arms. The people of Curacao are as diverse as New Yorkers; whether you identify as LBGT, are a fashionista, or wear a suit and tie on Wall Street. None of this matters as long as you are accepting of others as well. That’s the spirit of Curacao, and that’s why New Yorkers will feel at home here. You will notice that the people of Curacao are very diverse too. And did you know that we have more than 100 nationalities on our dushi island?
Curacao is not crowded, no mass tourism
Curacao is not crowded at all. No mass tourism, especially when compared to New York or other Caribbean islands. It is by no means a deserted island but you will definitely relax while you’re here. Especially Klein Curacao and the national parks are peacefully pleasant. It's hard to believe that from the New York hustle and bustle to the Curacao quiet is just a direct flight from JFK is just 4 hours and 50 minutes away.
We love celebrating special occasions as well
Who doesn’t love a good celebration? We know you New Yorkers do, and so do we. Whether it’s a special lunch, or brunch (yes we adore brunch!) a romantic dinner on the beach, a birthday or a proposal and special wedding celebration; you have come to the right place on Curacao. Let’s celebrate life together. With just the two of you, a small group of loved ones or a whole bunch. We'd love to have you here and show you how much we love you New Yorkers!