The Netherlands Antilles are the epitome of one of the best parts of travel to the Caribbean: There’s always another island to explore. These islands, for instance, are all independent countries that all have a Dutch influence and are part of the Kingdom of the Netherlands. If you have never been to Aruba, Bonaire, Curacao, or Saba, this is another area of the Caribbean that should be added to your travel wish list. Each island of the Dutch Antilles has its own appeal, including the dining and casinos of Aruba, the quaint architecture of Curacao, or the undisturbed feel of Saba. These islands might be a great location for your next Caribbean adventure.
Many Caribbean islands were once under the control of European countries. Today the remnants are most found in food, for example French influences on the island of Martinique. The same can be said in the islands of the Netherlands Antilles. Curacao particularly is known for its traditional Dutch architecture, although the island spiced things up by adding beautiful Caribbean pastel colors. Aruba is well known for its food, and while there are influences from all over the globe, the Dutch influence is present at many restaurants.
Despite all of this history, most people visit the Dutch Antilles for the beaches and outdoor adventure activities. The ocean here is ideal for all sorts of water sports, including snorkeling, scuba diving, jet ski rentals, sailing, fishing, and more. If you prefer to get your adrenaline pumping on dry land, there are also opportunities for hiking, particularly on the island of Saba. After a day spent exploring underwater marine life or climbing to the top of a mountain, beaches are an ideal place to relax. Sink your toes in the sand, go for a refreshing swim in the ocean, or simply work on your tan on these sun-drenched islands.
The climate of the Netherlands Antilles is warm all year round, making it the perfect escape at any time of year. Because of its location so close to the equator, temperatures don’t worry a great deal depending on the season. If you like a breezy day on the beach with temperatures in the 80s, than you will love the Dutch Antilles. Aruba is the most built up of these islands. It has a major international airport that accepts flights from many destinations daily. If you are planning a trip to Curacao or Saba you might have to fly first to Aruba. To get a well-rounded experience of these islands, why not visit more than one? A few days in Aruba can be spent dining and gambling and then head to one of the quieter, less developed islands to relax.
Another popular way to reach the Netherlands Antilles is by cruise. Aruba has a major cruise port, and many travelers visit this island as part of a larger Caribbean tour. This island is known for its excellent shopping and nightlife along with its dependable weather and wide beaches. If you’re looking for a special reason to visit these islands, check out planning a trip during the celebrations of Carnival. Each year, Carnival brings parades, music, and festivals to these Caribbean Islands. It is a chance to immerse yourself in the culture of these islands beyond their beaches and water sports. Whatever brings you to the Dutch Antilles, you will likely leave wanting to return soon.