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Snowbanks to beaches


Recently I returned from a vacation to Curaçao, an island in the southern Caribbean Sea, off the Venezuelan coast. The Country of Curaçao is a constituent country of the Kingdom of the Netherlands. This affords a unique mix of European and Caribbean cultures. Brightly coloured housing and buildings framed by sea, sand and sky paint the landscape of this island paradise. Although there are many activities to partake in, a favorite pass time during my short visit was enjoying a mojito and good book on the beach. And as a photographer, of course, taking some photos of local views.

Small palm tree huts scatter the beach front, offering much appreciated shade from the afternoon sun. I sipped on my mojito while enjoying some sunshine, next and only thought was should I jump in for a swim now, or wait a few more minutes. My travel companion, a long time friend, is an avid diver, so hearing her stories about the ocean sites seen, was a nice transition into making evening plans. Just the perfect amount of time to spend on my own, but ready for what ever the night brings.

The night life on our dive resort in Curaçao was quiet and perfect to watch the sun go down with a glass of wine. We found some amazing food in a couple of different restaurants on Lions Dive & Beach Resort . A few nights, we ventured down the beach to the another resort with a stage and outdoor pool, sipping cocktails and listening to a dj or band was a nice change. But we were both happy to be able to return to our quiet resort at the end of the night.

Night life aside, during the day, if you get tired of the beach life, you can walk over to the dive shop and ask to book, snorkeling, diving, booze cruise or a tour with Ocean Encounters, or a multitude of other activities. We went on diving trips, where I snorkeled, saw dolphins and sea turtles. I also had the opportunity to swim inside a natural cave on the coast. Klien Curaçao. an uninhabited island about an hours boat trip away was so beautiful. The beaches were white sand and the ocean the colour of emeralds. it took my breath away.

We also took a trip into the capital city of Willemstad, where we took a tour that gave us the gist of the city. With Venezuela only 40 miles away, farmers bring their produce and fish to the floating market daily. The colours and smells are almost overwhelming to the senses. There is a port where cruise ship come into tour, so shops such as Gucchi, LV, Guess and any other brand name you can imagine mushroom up around the port. This creates quite a diverse shopping experience, from Tiffany’s to the farmers boats.

The local people were amazing, we met a few people that showed us around, took us to a beach party and told us about the local scene. One noted fact I quickly learned about the locals, is that they speak at least three languages. Papiamento and Dutch are the official two language, but everyone seemed well versed in English. It’s a different life, where rules don’t apply the same way they do in back home. And everyone seems to know everyone else. Small island I guess! We were shown such hospitality and made fast friends that we hope to come back and visit soon.

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