Curacao Diary 2019
April 25, 2019
Labels: On track, Sail the Seas
Klein Curacao: A little island that is about 10 km away from the main island of Curacao. Smaller than 2 square km with nothing but nature and a tiny lighthouse, it's the ultimate paradise. There used to be a small population of fishermen living there, but as of now the island has no inhabitants. We booked a little boat trip that took us there (it takes about 1:45 minutes to get there) and I was definitely not prepared for those kind of waves. I don't have the strongest stomach and the way there was worse than any roller coaster. The way back is much easier due to directions of the waves by the way. But the island was so insanely beautiful that I would consider doing it again... and believe me that means a lot.
Open Lens Curacao: This place wasn't even open to the public but officially opened the same night. We got to take a little sneak peak by climbing down around 5 meters under water into a cosy little room with a huge window right into the ocean. I loved this approach on watching sea life without disturbing it. As the station is permanently there and doesn't make noise or distract sea life in any way, fish and plants can live without impact. We were accompanied by someone who answered all my questions about every tiny fish I saw and told us some facts about sea life in Curacao in general. Right next to it is the Sea Aquarium, which I am not a big fan of. But I also don't support the idea of zoos or any thing where animals are kept in captivity, especially if that captivity is extremely small compared to what they are used to in nature. So the Open Lens is a great alternative and I don't need to see a shark to have a good time. I highly recommend going to places like this!
De Visserij: One of my absolute favorite places to eat fish on Curacao. Make sure you don't come too late in the evening as they do sell out of certain fish. There is also usually a line, but believe me the wait is worth it. You order from about 4-5 different fish or shrimp, they weigh it, you tell them how you want the fish to be done and you can choose some fries and salad with it. Plain and simple because the fish is incredible enough! My tip would be the red snapper. That one was absolutely great!
Kome: We actually went there because of the food but also because of the super nice owner (or boss, not sure about his position) and his staff. They have a tapas night I think Wednesday but also a really nice lunch menu. They do a mix of Curacao specialties with a twist. My favorite had to be the Chicken and Waffles though.
Number 10: This one only opened recently and people told me it's the spot on the island right now. Well the food did not disappoint. We had breakfast there and bowls and bagels were fabulous. They did have some issues with the service but I'm guessing it's a starting problem. Everyone who did come to us was extremely nice.
Caña Bar: This one wasn't even on our list as we were supposed to go to Mosa (their fine dining sister restaurant). But somehow reservations got mixed up and we ended at Caña which was the best thing that could have happened. Their menu is a little more chill and made for sharing with people. From Tacos to Cassava fries to really good little salads. Also their home made lemonades and drinks were incredible.
The last time I visited Curacao Gaby showed us a lot of street art down town and in hidden places. This time she selected three artists and I got the chance to visit them at their atelier. The first one being Ailsa Anastatia. I absolutely loved her technique and colors. She was in the middle of preparing an exhibition which is why I wasn't allowed to photograph everything, but I think you get an idea of her works by the few snapshots I managed to capture. I'm usually more a fan of photography art (surprise), but Ailas works I would definitely hang on my walls.
The next artist was already familiar to me or at least his works were. Garrick Marchena is know in Curacao for painting portraits of kids. I photographed a couple of his works the last time I visited. He showed us how he started, what his daily job is about and all the other artworks he has spread around Curacao. He also works together with teenagers and let's them create art with him.
Piggy Beach (Porto Mari)... when I heard from a friend that Curacao had a spot where pigs would chill at the beach, naturally I had to check that out. We all know the Bahama piglets in turqoise water and that's a little bit what I imagined. Arriving at Porto Mari it was actually quite crowded and the beach is definitely selling the "pig" thing. There are about two or three of them usually chilling in the mud bath and sometimes making their way down to the beach. They are about 5 times larger than i expected but none the less made me crazy excited about the whole thing. The beach it self is super nice and we got to see an incredible sunset. I wouldn't come here for the pigs but it's definitely beach worth going to! Also there is a little fee you have to pay (I think). We arrived so late that no one was collecting that fee anymore, but there were definitely signs!
Last but not least to complete the artist trilogy, we got to visit Francis Sling in his atelier. If I imagine an artist/painter... that's exactly what pops up into my mind. A studio full of colors, half finished works, splashes of paint, used brushes ans an artist with this certain aura that makes everyone in the room curious. He was in the middle of completing a work when we visited and somehow ended up talking for over an hour. Looking around his studio you would constantly find something new to discover. I fell in love with a painting he was actually working on and can't wait to see how it ended up. Make sure you check out his works either online or on the houses and in the streets of Curacao.
Thanks to Gaby I managed to meet a lot of people and photograph more than ten faces and hair dos for CROWNS project. As this is an ongoing project I always try to photograph people where ever I travel to. It is definitely valuable to have a local help you with reaching enough people. So a huge thank you goes out to Gaby who made it possible. If you want to be part of it, feel free to send me a message directly via CROWNS instagram.
To complete this post, I can't not mention the place we stayed at for the week. I've stayed in different airbnbs, and at a beach resort the last times, so I was super curious to try something new. A little boutique hotel called "Amalia". Done with so much detail and love that it already won me over the moment we arrived. Meeting the staff and the owner then got me completely convinced. It definitely felt more like staying with friends and they made everything possible we asked for. The rooms were large, the hotel was super quiet and chill and the beach was 10 minutes away. I would absolutely recommend you staying there if you need a cosy, quiet little place with a story and people that make you feel like you're staying with friends and not at a hotel. Ok that all sounded cheesy as fuck, but I just can't think of a different way to describe it and it's exactly how it felt to me.