Let me tell you this: When you’re in need of a break from your day to day life, Curacao is definitely the island to be! This beautiful island weekend getaway was exactly what I needed at that moment, and let me tell you why!
Around the time I went to Curacao, I had been living in New York City for a little bit over a year and a half. And I’ll be very honest about this: I didn’t love New York anymore as much as I did when I just started living there. But this was definitely because of the circumstances, so let me tell you more my situation during that time.
When I left Amsterdam to study and live in New York City, my initial plan was to do this for about 6 months only. I was there as an exchange student, on a J-1 Visa, that was valid for the semester I was gonna study there. This period was amazing, I met so many new friends, at school, at my apartment and because of salsa dancing. I didn’t have to worry about money because I worked and saved up a lot in the year before. It was a great time, so I decided to stay longer. I extended my exchange program and had the opportunity to do a really cool internship here at a fashion company. I was excited for what to come!
This internship started in January and was gonna be for about 8 months. It was stationed in Midtown West, near Times Square, which was a dream coming true. But after a few weeks I noticed how tough this new life was. I worked very hard to show myself from my best side at the company. The days were from 9 till 6 from Monday till Friday and next to this I also danced in Yamulee Dance Company. Here I also pushed myself a lot by going to all the classes at the studio every night of the week, and weekends as well. After a few months I was constantly tired, mentally and physically.
In October my exchange visitor visa was gonna end, which meant my internship was ending and I had to leave the country. But I did want to come back on a tourist visa for the last three months of the year. So I literally had to go out and in. I was thinking, where shall I go for this mandatory weekend away? Luckily one of my best friends in the world has an apartment on Curacao, so he invited me to come during that weekend, of course I said yes!
Flying to Curacao from New York is pretty easy. There are direct flights or you can transfer in Miami, which I did. Both flights were only a few hours and it costed less than I expected, about $270 round trip. I remember when I sat in the airplane from Miami to Curacao I was sitting next to the path and a girl was next to the window, with nobody in between us. I was curiously looking at her secretly and constantly because she was recording stories, talking to her phone, she had a big camera and a laptop, all at the same time. There was no doubt, this girl was a blogger. We talked just for a little bit, not that much, because I was too shy at the moment. Her name was Jocelyn and she has an amazing travel blog called Chasing Carpe Diem. Ever since I have been following her and she is definitely an inspiration for me and that meeting really felt like it was meant to be!
Another thing that really felt meant to be, was that during my mandatory-leaving-the-US-weekend at Curacao there was also a salsa festival going on, exactly that weekend! It was organized by Latin Lounge Curacao, an organization that holds more often parties and events on the island. So the whole weekend there were parties and events on different locations on the island. So this was a perfect way for me to discover different spots.
So in the evenings we went to different fun and gezellige (The most important Dutch word for cosy/good atmosphere and energy) parties, during the day we definitely relaxed and hung out on beaches. And this was such a perfect combination! The island is not that big so we could drive everywhere within no time. My friend Ronald showed me all the best spots to hang out at the water.
Because of my hectic lifestyle that I had before I came to Curacao, I totally came at peace on this island. This was exactly what I needed. The people on Curacao are so relaxed, kind and open, I felt totally welcome. It was so great to after all those crazy months of working and dance practices, I didn’t have to do anything else than relax and enjoy the moment for a couple of days.
Do you know those moments that you just feel completely at peace with the moment, yourself, the people and your surroundings? I definitely remember one moment like that when I was on Curacao. On the last day of the Latin Lounge Festival, they organized a barbecue party during the day at one of the beaches. It was super gezellig, there was music, good food, nice drinks, great weather, people dancing and being happy. There was also some sort of family feeling because people brought their kids, which gave an even more good feeling. I remember when the party was almost over, I was sitting in the sand at the water, looking over the sea while the sun was going down, and I was so happy and feeling at peace. This was definitely one of the most happy moments of my life, how this moment just created itself because I sort of had to leave the US. I was so thankful that I could experience this.
Then before I knew it, the weekend ended and I was flying back to New York. I remember I was in the airplane and I was crying. The contrast between my New York life and these couple of days on Curacao had been so big. I went from being constantly stressed out and busy to literally a feeling of heaven. As I was flying home I realized how happy I was the last couple of days, towards my intense New York life.
Have you ever been to Curacao as well? Did you enjoy it as much as me? I would love to hear in the comments! 🙂