Figuratively and literally speaking that is! The little island of Curaçao can be pretty proud of the authentic festive feeling it breathes during the festive holidays. We think it has something to do with the traditions introduced during colonial times, the people held on to the good things and set those traditions forward. That combined with the local “always up for a party” lifestyle and the many visitors visiting the island brings about an extra buzz and feeling of excitement towards the end of the year. The visitors consist of foreign travelers, but also many Curaçao born & bred living abroad, all uber happy to be on the sunny island and ready to rumble!
In December Curaçao Lights Up!
The island literally lights up with millions and millions of Christmas lights and decoration! Most light shows are concentrated in the city center; walk from the marina to Punda and on your way you are greeted by colorful light decorations. Walk on and it will accumulate to much more and bigger light displays. Especially on the main squares of Punda and Otrabanda, connected by the pontoon bridge covered in lights. You might think, so what’s so exciting about lights? Of course it’s not the lights, but it’s the vibe it brings along! From the moment it’s lit it brings many local families and kids to the city centre and it sets a romantic and festive tone for the rest of the season.
In December Curaçao is also “On Fire”!
Not literally thank god! We are talking about fireworks here! People of Curaçao just love fireworks.. or is it again the buzz around it? Probably a bit of both. On the 31st of December at exactly 00:00 the island seems like a colorful war zone! But the firework extravaganza already starts on the 26th, with firework shows and happenings on a daily. There is always a firework show schedule available, so you know when & where to go. We will share it on Curaçao Marine’s Facebook page when the time comes.
Our favorite firework shows are:
- 30 December at Zuikertuintje shopping area: In the evening different restaurants and bars together organize one of the most fun end of year events! With live music, outside bars, a nice mix of people and of course a firework show.
- On the 31st the party starts early in Pietermaai: “The XXL Pagara Party”, from noon the people gather in the streets between Punda and Pietermaai. All ages and all nationalities come together to enjoy the music, dancing, drinks, food and again fireworks. This time not a colorful show in the sky, but a never ending firework-cake called a “pagara”.
Best locations to see the fireworks on the 31st at midnight:
- In the city centre in the middle of the “swinging lady” the pontoon bridge. People of all nationalities start gathering on the bridge from about 9 or 10 o’clock. The best way to experience it is how the locals do it; bringing chairs, jugs with food, drinks and champagne of course!
- New, but slightly illegal location: on top of the big Juliana bridge. People time it to arrive on the bridge just before 00:00, they just park their car on one side of the bridge and watch the fireworks go wild, about 15 minutes later they are on their way again to either family or a new year’s party. *This one is at your own risk.
- Actually on any hill top with a good view. All you have to do is bring friends and booze and celebrate together! Success guaranteed!
- Your boat! From Curaçao Marine you can time it to be in the Anna Bay around midnight, where one of the bigger firework shows take place. Also on the Spanish water you can bet on a good show, the rich people in the lavish houses around the bay sure know how to spend a few bucks on fireworks to kick off their parties.
What else is going on?
Figuratively speaking Curaçao is also on fire because there are so many parties, celebrations and events happening every day of the week during festive season. Below we only sum up a few:
- Tip #1: Every Thursday evening Punda is buzzing during Punda Vibes. Enjoy the sunset, shop around, have dinner and savour a few cocktails among the lovely lit monumental buildings in town. From there you can continue the good vibes in Pietermaai, the trendy suburb that has grown into the dining and entertainment hub of the island. All within walking distance from Curaçao Marine.
- Tip #2: Visit one of the many Christmas Fairs! The most popular is the annual Christmas Fair in Pietermaai, but there is a new player in town! Meet Hello Skalo. Between 20-23 of December this will be the place to go! Again around the corner of Curaçao Marine!
- Tip #3: Let’s end this top 3 with the annual “Fuikdag” this is probably everyone’s favorite on the island and can be of extra interest to the sailors. Why? Because the only way to get there is by boat! So this brings all boatmen, yachtsmen, sailors and many more together in one secluded bay for one day and always on the first Sunday of the new year! Over the last decade this gathering has spontaneously grown into everyone’s favorite annual event.
Through the social media of Curaçao Marine, we share information on our services and facilities, but we also inform about worthwhile events and festivities in Curacao. Especially if they are in close proximity or relevant to the sailing community. So to stay up to date, your best bet is to follow Curaçao Marine on Facebook and Instagram! Plus you will also be the first to find out if there is any end of the year celebrations for the sailors at our yard! Who wouldn’t enjoy a BBQ feast, cold drinks accompanied by happy sailors from all over the world!