From Bonaire we had a 35 NM sail to Curacao, also part of the Netherlands
Antilles and also known
as one of the ABC islands: Aruba, Bonaire and Curacao.
We anchored in Spanish Waters, a large almost completely landlocked area of
water entered through
a narrow and winding channel
While here we collected our new mainsail and instilled a solar panel, which
powers our firidge on sunny days.
Just over the narrow strip of land separating Spanish Waters from the open
ocean is a cruise ship
pier and (temporarily) a oil rig hotel. This is not a drilling
platform, but provides accommodation for
off duty riggers on a group of oil rigs. We were told this is a brand
new platform, but to conform with
the requirements of the oil company it was being leased to, they had to
spend another $40 million
upgrading the systems!
The main town is Willemstadt, and while the island was not very pretty,
Willemstadt was full of
old Dutch buildings painted in pastels and white.
Willemstadt is split in 2 by the Schottegatt, a deep water channel leading
to a large bay with the
commercial port and a large oil refinery.
The floating bridge was built in the 1880s and restored in 2007.
It opens to allow ships through. In the background is the road bridge
built in the seventies.
Traditional Dutch canal bridge.
This is the governor's palace.
These boats bring fresh fruit and vegetables from Venezuela......
...lots of variety,
.. and fresh fish.
While the cruise ships bring the tourists. At any time there were 2
or 3 cruise ships in Curacoa.
The ship in the background under the bridge is the "Freewinds", which
belongs to the Christian Science
religion. Not sure if it's purpose is as a missionary ship, or
rewarding donors with a "free cruise".
The house on the corner was built in 1685 for a merchant.
We hired a car for a couple of days to do our shopping, and also a little
island tour. This pretty beach
was a very nice place to have a drink and watch the sun go down.