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A Trip to Klein Curaçao

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Klein Curaçao, a small, uninhabited island found a few miles southeast of Curaçao, has become a popular destination for day trips, thanks to its pristine beach, excellent snorkeling, and atmosphere of forsaken solitude. We booked an excursion which brought us to the island on a catamaran, and spent the day checking it out.

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There are a number of operators which offer trips to Klein Curaçao, but we decided to book with Bounty Adventures, on the recommendation of a friend. And it turns out that the word “Adventure” in the company’s name is no joke.

The 90-minute boat ride to Klein Curaçao was among the roughest I’ve ever endured. Over and over again, we slammed headlong into huge waves, sending the bow of the ship meters into the air, and then crashing back down onto the water. Within minutes, everyone on-board was soaked to the bone, and many weren’t able to tolerate it. If you suffer from seasickness, or even suspect that you might, this might not be the right excursion for you. Seriously. There were a lot of people racing to the railings to empty their stomachs, and not all of them made it in time.

Everyone on the ship was overjoyed when we finally reached our destination. Immediately, Jürgen and I set out to explore, wanting to get away from the ship as swiftly as possible. Klein Curaçao is less than one square mile in size, so walking to the opposite shore required just a few minutes. On the way, we passed by an old lighthouse. Since the island is so small, its lighthouse was placed right in the middle, visible to ships on either side. We climbed up inside the tower, and although the top floor was locked off, were able to enjoy some nice views.

Klein Curacao

We continued east until arriving at the shipwreck of the Maria Bianca Guidesman oil tanker, which is totally rusted and slowly breaking apart under the pressure of the waves. This tanker ran ashore in the 1960s, and about half of its hull is still standing, with the wreckage of the other half strewn across the shore. We saw another, more modern wreck a few meters up the coast. There are apparently a few other boats which underestimated Klein Curaçao, but we didn’t take the time to search these out, as we were eager to return to the beach and get into the water.

The snorkeling is supposed to be great on Klein Curaçao, but maybe we didn’t find the best spot. We didn’t see much living coral or interesting sea life, and I was just about to label it “disappointing,” until we started spotting turtles. Klein Curaçao is mostly undisturbed by humanity and our destructive tendencies, and has long been an important breeding zone for sea turtles.

We never found much coral, but there was a short period during which we saw tons of fish. After our buffet lunch on the ship, the captain and his crew tossed the remaining food into the ocean. What ensued was a massive feeding frenzy underneath the ship. We jumped into the water with masks, and had front row seats for the crazy free-for-all.

Once we had finished swimming, eaten lunch, and cooked our bodies in the sun, it was time to head back to Curaçao. Given the rough outward journey, I was worried, but the return was a totally different experience. This time, we were moving in the direction of the waves. The captain even turned off the motor and foisted the sails, and we cruised back in style, stretched out on the catamaran’s tarp, with glasses of white wine in our hands.

Klein Curaçao is hard to recommend as an excursion for everyone. I’m not exaggerating the hellishness of the morning’s boat ride; it really is hard-core and the crew confirmed that this is always the case. After vomiting, the guy next to us had said, “Why am I on a boat to go to a beach, when I already flew to an island with so many beaches?” And it was hard to disagree with this logic. The beach at Klein Curaçao is great, but Curaçao has a lot of others which are even better. Although we had fun, and I’m glad we did it once, I’m not sure we’d want to repeat this particular adventure.

Location of Klein Curaçao on our Map

This is our underwater camera!

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February 26, 2016 at 8:09 pm Comments (0)

Shete Boka National Park

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The eastern coast of Curaçao is completely different from the tranquil west. Here, the Caribbean Sea greets the shore with power and violence. You won’t want to swim, but it’s fun to watch massive waves smash against the rocks. And nowhere is the view more impressive than the Shete Boka National Park.

Shete Boka Curacao

Shete Boka is Papiamento for “Seven Mouths,” referring to the number of rocky inlets which have been carved into the coast. The ocean crashes into each of these “mouths” with fury, sending sprays of water high into the air. From the park’s entrance, it’s easy to reach four of the best inlets; you can drive to them in your car, or better yet: embark on a dramatic hike along a set of coastal trails.

The closest inlet to the parking lot is Boka Tabla, where the crashing water has hollowed out a slippery cave. Visitors are allowed to enter at their own risk, but I ventured down just a few steps, afraid that a sudden wave might take me off guard. I felt safer up above, stationed on the viewing platform; each of the bokas in the park has a place from which to take pictures.

Shete Boka Curacao

From here, we walked north along the coast to Boka Wandomi, where we were able to see a natural bridge that has formed in the rock. Returning to the south, we headed toward Boka Kalki. It was slow-going; the ground here is comprised of jagged, volcanic rock, and it’s difficult to walk on. But once we got closer, the vegetation changed, and soon we were on a path that led through a forest of twisted trees, until reaching the sand of Boka Kalki.

Shete Boka Curacao

Boka Pistol was the final mouth of the day, and perhaps the most spectacular of them all. Its name is no exaggeration; a circular hole has been worn into the rock, and when the waves hit it, the water swirls around briefly before shooting high into the air, as though from a pistol.

We could have returned along the coast, but decided to take the long way back to the parking lot. A walking path leads into the interior, up two hills (Seru Braun and Seru Chai), providing views of the rocky, savage coastline. It was a great way to end our trip to Shete Boka. We appreciate calm, idyllic beaches as much as the next guys, but it’s nice to see that Curaçao’s nature also has a wild side.

Location on our Map

We found the cheapest car rental rates for Curacao here

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December 24, 2015 at 11:09 pm Comments (0)
A Trip to Klein Curaao Klein Curaçao, a small, uninhabited island found a few miles southeast of Curaçao, has become a popular destination for day trips, thanks to its pristine beach, excellent snorkeling, and atmosphere of forsaken solitude. We booked an excursion which brought us to the island on a catamaran, and spent the day checking it out.
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