Curacao is an Dutch island close to Venezuela (http://www.cruisecritic.com/ports/newport.cfm?ID=15 ). The Sea Aquarium tour looked inviting but we swam with the dolphins in Cuba and the sting rays in the Grand Cayman. We chose the Discover ... Read More
Curacao is an Dutch island close to Venezuela (http://www.cruisecritic.com/ports/newport.cfm?ID=15 ). The Sea Aquarium tour looked inviting but we swam with the dolphins in Cuba and the sting rays in the Grand Cayman. We chose the Discover Curacao Island Tour will allow more time to enjoy the ambience of Curacao and some shopping, although the Double the Fun Tour had raving reviews.
Our 62 year old driver, Marcel, and talkative guide "Wa Wa" drove us around on the tour that started at 8:30am. Our first stop was an old Dutch army infirmary. Inside the main building was old mahogany furniture from when the island had mahogany and an organ donated by Queen Julianna. Another building had the front part of an old airplane engine. Then we went by the salinization plant and a variety of neighborhoods before arriving at the Hata limestone caves by the airport.
Edsel, the cave guide, instructed us that we had to climb 49 steps before entering the cave. Inside we saw stalactites, stalagmites, bats, water pools and interesting configurations. One of which looked like the Virgin Mary.
We proceeded over a tall arching bridge to the curcacao liqueur factory. Our favorite sample was the orange flavored one. We purchased the taster pack -- 5 flavors. At the gift shop on site we purchased a postcard and stamps. Curacao has colorful stamps that are delights for collectors and grandchildren.
On the bus ride back we composed our letter to our youngest granddaughter. We were part of the group that got off the bus by the roundabout rather than the ship. It saved walking time.
We walked across the pontoon bridge into the main shopping area. We used our Effy jewelry coupon again and got citrine pendants and we purchased the matching $10 earrings. We then went searching for the Post Office which was closed on Saturday, however, the mailbox was open. It was a good thing I had bought stamps.
On the way back to the ship, we walked into a few of the stores but we mostly window shopped. We also walked past the produce market and fish market. After we walked back over the bridge we stopped at a kiosk and bought a pink dress for our granddaughter. The Aruba labelled nightgown my wife bought for $14 cost $4 more because it had a Curcacao label at the street kiosks.
The only regret is that we never saw the beaches on Curcacao. Read Less