Family-Travel-to Curacao

Family Travel To Curacao

Are you Curious about Curacao?

Family Travel to Curacao, Netherlands Antilles

This Dutch Caribbean Island is rich in language, culture, and diversity.  Its history is alive and expressed in the galleries, restaurants, museums, and people. Blue skies, pristine water and soft sandy beaches, are you Curious about Curacao yet?

Namaste. Warrior pose on the beach at Curacao

Knowing little about Curacao, my expectations were rather limited. I didn’t think Curacao would be any different than any other Caribbean island I’ve experienced.  In fact, I was pretty sure I’d been to Curacao before. Maybe on a cruise or something; nothing too memorable.  So when my husband told me we were going on a Valentine’s Day getaway to Curacao with the two kids in tow, I was less than impressed.

The island of Curacao is located just off the Venezuelan coast about 15 degrees south of the equator. The temperature is warm and sunny most of the year and averages about 80 degrees. Curacao has trade winds blowing in from the east so lying out on the beach or enjoying a round of golf is both comfortable and ideal.  The rainy season is from October through February, though it rarely rains for the entire day.

Santa Barbara Beach Resort & Golf Club

We stayed at the Santa Barbara Beach Resort & Golf Club. It is one of the most exclusive luxury 5 star resorts on Curacao.  It’s located a good distance away from the airport and the downtown district and sits on 27 acres of a Natural Wildlife Preserve.  Breathtaking views, exotic animals, and warm tropical breezes surrounded us.

The view from our family suite.

Santa Barbara Resort is well maintained and immaculate. I couldn’t find any flaws in any part of the buildings or rooms.  Yes I look for flaws. Wooden doors and furnishings, arched grand entrances, open stairwells, and dark plantations shutters. The decor is simple, clean, and elegant.

Open passages and grand stairwells at the Santa Barbara Resort

Our accommodations were perfect for my size crew.  We enjoyed a family suite with two bedrooms, 3 bathrooms and a living room.  Yes, that’s right I said 3 bathrooms.  The suite was actually a combined king room, a room with two double beds, and a living room positioned in the middle.  I’m guessing they have several floor plans to accommodate almost any sized party.  The suite also had an attached ocean view patio, small kitchenette, and pull out sofa.

Family-Travel-to Curacao
Taking a few photographs at the golf course.

There is so much to enjoy at the Santa Barbara Beach Resort & Golf Club including tennis, fishing, sailing, kayaking, and snorkeling.  We spent a lot of time at the pool getting sun kissed and chasing iguanas.   There were plenty of iguanas around the resort and they were all harmless and very hospitable. They even had an Iguana Feeding activity for the kids to enjoy. They had so much fun watching the staff interact with the iguanas.

Iguanas roam free in Curacao. There is a traditional iguana soup that is said to increase libido.

The Santa Barbara Resort has an 18-hole golf course that is located just off the Caribbean Sea.  There is an 8,000 square feet pro golf shop complete with locker rooms, lounge, and a restaurant.  The kids and I decided to join my husband for a round of golf so he wouldn’t get too lonely. We had fun driving the golf carts around and taking in the landscape and scenic views. There were so many different species of plants, birds, and iguanas to photograph. After the kids and I got bored playing golf we let my husband to enjoy the last 9 holes alone as we took photographs by the shore.

The untouched shores of the Santa Barbara Resort is the perfect place to take in a couple of yoga poses.

My idea of a relaxing afternoon also consists of spa time and there is a spa located at the resort. At the Atebei Spa, I enjoyed a facial in an open aired treatment room with bamboo walls for privacy. There’s also a large open rain shower in each of the rooms for visitors to freshen after a long hard day at the spa.

The kids enjoyed playing chess in the lounge are at the Santa Barbara Resort

While I lounged at the spa, the kids hung out at the resort’s kid’s center. It’s fully staffed and designed to accommodate children and babies.  We felt very comfortable leaving our two in the care of the friendly staff members.  They played board games and created a seashell craft while they were there.

The Santa Barbara Resort has several restaurants including one called The Shore.    It’s an American Seafood Grill overlooking the ocean, which to our delight offered a 5 course fixed priced meal on Valentine’s Day.  Once again, the resort arranged our childcare for the evening. But this time it was in room child care. Ms. Robin, our sitter for the evening, arrived 15 minutes early, allowing me a few extra minutes to get dolled up for hubby.  This wasn’t our first time using a resort’s in room childcare so after a 5-minute introduction we were bolting out the door.

Having a romantic evening without the kids.

There is plenty of recreational activity at Santa Barbara but we really wanted to venture off the property and take in some local sites.  One evening we went to the Papagayo Beach Club and Plaza.  There were several shops, outdoor restaurants, bars and a casino.  We felt very comfortable walking around with the little ones, the crowd was mostly PG rated.  There are lots of tourists in the area and we felt very safe.  We ate dinner at a beach bar & grill.  It was the perfect setting for a family dinner on the island: picnic tables, canopy lights, and a friendly staff.

“Cheers to family travel!”

Our next off resort adventure was to Curacao’s downtown district.  We spent an afternoon walking the streets peeking in and out of the tourist shops and stopping every now and then to take a few photos.  The architecture is almost identical to the homes in Amsterdam that are often photographed.

Taking a stroll downtown Curacao discovering the country’s history.

Papiamento, Dutch, Spanish, English, and Portuguese are all the beautiful native languages spoken in Curacao.   Most people from here speak a minimum of four languages.  They are also very knowledgeable about their history and culture.  I think it’s because the country does a good job at preserving its history no matter how dark that may be.

At the Kura Hulanda Museum in Curacao

During our walk downtown we stumbled upon the Kura Hulanda Museum, located in what use to be the slave quarters and once owned by the Dutch West India Trade Company.  Curacao was one of the largest trading post for African slaves for the Dutch.  The site of the museum is the exact location where slaves were kept and sold after they were taken off vessels from Africa.   The museum offers one of the most extensive collections of slave trade artifacts anywhere in the world. We were able to see and touch most of the exhibits including the child-sized shackles, which gave me chills watching my child hold them.

Viewing the artifacts at the Kura Hulanda Museum in Curacao

This was the first time my husband and I had a conversation with our children about the Slave Trade. The museum was so well curated with supporting documents, illustrations, articles, even a full sized replica of the bottom of a slave boat where men woman and children were stacked like sacks of grain. They were all there for my family to see, touch, and feel.  I couldn’t imagine us ever having such an experience like that moment while visiting the Kura Hulanda Museum in Curacao.

A sculpture of Africa in the courtyard at the Kura Hulanda Museum

After the museum we walked around the area visiting a few other galleries and had lunch at the Governors Restaurant.   Curacao is a major cruise port and there were many people there enjoying the shopping.

Taking family photographs in the downtown district of Curacao.

Are you ready to plan your next vacation getaway? You must come and experience Curacao with your family and I recommend you stay at the beautiful Santa Barbara Beach Resort and Golf Club.  I promise that after one trip to this exciting country you will forever and always be Curious about Curacao?

For more images from the Kura Hulanda Museum in Curacao click here.


42 thoughts on “Family Travel To Curacao”

    1. Hi Tiffani! Curacao and the Santa Barbara Resort is the perfect place for children of all babies. It was vey relaxed environment. Absolutely no turn up during wake hours. The staff was very friendly at the childcare center. I highly recommend this for families with children young and old. I see sun and sand in your future! Make it great day!

    1. Yes I believe it was also one of my ports on our honeymoon. A few hours in downtown is not enough to appreciate this country. I hope you get to visit again soon. I see sun and sand in your future! have a beautiful day!

  1. The resort looked amazing! Their history is rich and interesting. Great you got the opportunity to show and explain the slave trade. I am sure it would give anyone chills.

    1. Hi Holly! Thank you. The pictures doesn’t do justice for Curacao, the Santa Barbara, or the museum. It really is 100 times better in person. I hope you have a chance to experience it. I see sun and sand in your future!

  2. Wow! I’ve never heard of Curacao prior to your post. It looks like a beautiful place I would love to visit. From the pictures it looks like you had your family enjoyed yourselves. Thank you for sharing your experience. I will definitely add Curacao to my long list of places I want to visit.

  3. :adds to Curaco to 1000 life goals list: OH EMM GEE. So gorgeous… I love the picture of you in the yoga/karate kid pose… LOL… It seems like a gorgeous location and an excellent opportunity for family travel. Continued peace and Blessings to you and your beautiful family in the New Year and beyond.

  4. OMG, I have a friend who is from there and he’s always going on and on about how beautiful it is. Reminds me a lot of Dominican Republic which I am from but nonetheless, very beautiful place.

    I love the hotel suite you were in. Sounds like the one I would love to be in ..even if I had one child..hahaha!!

    Thanks for sharing,

  5. The pictures of your family, the beach, the resort and yoga poses definitely have me curious about Curacao. Prior to reading your article I had no interest or much knowledge of Curacao. I have teenagers, so I’m sure the hubby and I wouldn’t mind sharing a get-a-way with them to Curacao. Thanks for sharing!

    1. Thats exactly how I felt before we arrived. I was so surprised at the beauty and culture. I think its a great getaway for just you and the husband. I hope you get to enjoy it!

  6. beautiful family & photos. Curaçao has such a rich history. My uncle was from there. He was a professor and historian so he always shared the history with us. I would love to visit. You are brave to get that close to the iguana. I would have missed that shot.
    Looking forward to your 2015 travels

    1. Hey MJ! Don’t let the photo full you. I had my ultra zoom lense on that bad boy! When I first started to get close he tensed up. So I kept my distance. Thanks so much! I see Sun & Sand in your future!

  7. Curacao is one of my top dream vacation spots! Can’t wait to get there someday – thanks for sharing!!

    How did your children handle the slavery conversation? That is a very moving picture of them looking at those shackles.

    1. Hi Curvey Girl! It was a very emotional moment to visit this museum and share with my children the reality of our history. They did have some knowledge of our ancestors but as you can imagine, seeing and touching these artifacts made it all real for them.

    1. I hope you get a chance to experience it. That passport renewal can be a headache, especially if you need to expidite. I encourage you to get it now! :). I see Sun & Sand in your future.

  8. This sounds like a great vacation spot. It looks so beautiful! I would love to tale my family. What a teachable moment in the museum. It’s great that you took advantage of it.

    1. It was one of the best vacations we had. We always look for opportunities to teach our children but this was truly a surprise and well worth the visit.

  9. What an awesome experience! As soon as I get over my fear of flying and save up enough to afford it, I would love to make that my first out of country vacation. You took some great photos! #blmgirls

  10. Stopping over from Bloggers Like Me! So excited to meet another travel blogger! Your pics are beautiful as well as your children! I spent a day in Curacao while on a cruise. We had the inside scoop since a close family friend moved there over 30 years ago from Jamaica so she gave us a wonderful tour and we went to her neighborhood. I do love all the colorful houses downtown! What a great opportunity to speak to your children about the slave trade!

  11. I’m going in Oct and was contemplating on a bed n breakfast, but opted for a resort instead. I plan on going to the museum and venturing out as well. I’m pretty nervous, but excited because this will be my first REAL solo trip visiting a place where I don’t have friends or family.

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