5 Ways to Experience Curaçao Like a Local

Category: | Published on: March 21, 2019 | By Omaily Lucas

If you’re looking for ways to experience Curaçao like a local, then look no further. We gathered the 5 best ways to really feel like you’re living on Curaçao; like someone who’s been here forever. Walk in the footsteps of the locals on the island and experience Curaçao through their knowing eyes.


Go Beach-Hopping

Want to experience Curaçao like a local? Start with beach-hopping. One of the coolest activities locals do is beach-hopping. We place a cooler in the trunk with ice and refreshing drinks, some munchies for on the road, and a happy playlist to set the mood. Travel along the west coast, starting at Westpunt, and take a plunge at every accessible free beach you find on your way. This way you get to experience every beach and get a brief introduction to what every beach offers.


Barbecue at the Beach

On weekends, many local families will go to a public beach in Banda Bou and set up their barbecue for a good grill. An abundance of food and snacks—often made according to a family recipe—work their magic to calm the beach appetite, while the drinks go around a la minute. It’s a tradition that will give you the ultimate island-pleasure. Even if you can’t get your hands on a big barbecue, many supermarkets sell little disposable barbecues that you can use. Buy a small cooler, fill it with ice (you can buy small or half bags of ice at every minimarket), and your favorite beer or drink. Go to a free beach early in the morning and set up your barbecue somewhere safe. Many supermarkets even sell ready-made meat and salad for grilling. All you must do it grill it and enjoy. If you want to experience Curaçao like a local, then this one is a must-do.


Local Beats & ‘Ambiente’

Going out to enjoy some live music might not be your first thought when you think about a way to experience Curaçao like a local, but that’s exactly what makes it special. ‘Ambiente’ is the local word for conviviality. One thing that is very popular on Curaçao is to have live entertainment at restaurants or cafés. You will see young and old moving their way to the dance floor to dance a song or two. It’s a party to watch, and if you can swing your hips from left to right then you’re always welcome to join. A favorite spot of many is Friday Nights at Riffort or Saturdays at Zanzibar. The entertainment and the ‘ambiente’ is always top-notch and a pleasure for locals and tourists. No one get left behind! You’ll see kids dancing around, some visitors moving their hips to the wrong beat, others stealing the show, while the shy bob their heads up and down. But, in the end, everyone has a good time.

Have Lunch at a Local Restaurant

Traditional dishes are often a meal that is made by my mom and grandmother and eaten at home. There are a select few restaurants though that serve local food just like you would find in a family home. Plasa Bieu, Pop’s Place, and Komedor Krioyo are three of the most popular places visited by locals around noon. While the rest of the world is used to eating a heavy meal at night, we eat our dinner during lunch. Out of these restaurants, Pop’s Place is the only one open until the night. Take a seat and enjoy a delicious goat or local stew and pair it with some refreshing limeade.


Go for a Walk After the Sun Goes Down

Whether you’re a sportive type or you just want to do something different during your holidays, then a walk will not only get your heart pumping but will also give you a glimpse of the everyday life here on Curaçao. After 6 pm many locals gather at some of the popular jogging places to do some exercise. Jan Thiel and Koredor are the most popular ones. It’s no surprise since the route also gives a nice tropical view. Go for a walk or a jog, walk alongside the men and women of the island, and experience Curaçao like a local.

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