The Netherland Antilles are two sets of islands composed of Saba, Sint Eustatius and Sint Maarten just east of the Virgin Islands, and Bonaire and Curacao just north of Venezuela. These islands are a part of the Netherlands and offer visitors a mix of heritages and flavours. Whether in search of a romantic getaway or a different diving experience, visitors should find what suits them between the five islands.
Because the Netherlands Antilles is split into two halves, it is better to plan excursions ahead or on an island-by-island basis. The island of Curacao offers the architecture of the Netherlands fused with the local language and culture. The Museum Kura Hulanda, Queen Emma Bridge and the Maritime Museum are all located on Curacao island.
The island of Bonaire is renowned for diving and its many spots. Apart from scuba diving, snorkelling, fishing and a host of other water activities, Bonaire also has a number of land activities such as mountain biking, kite boarding, bird watching and windsurfing. Saint Martin/Sint Maarten is divided into both a French and Dutch side. If exploring either side of the island, be sure to visit the Butterfly Farm on the French side and of course the breathtaking beaches.
The accommodation of the Netherlands Antilles varies hugely from island to island. The hotels of Bonaire are quite small as buildings cannot reach more than three storeys. Curacao is the largest island and visitors can find almost every type of accommodation here. These range from large hotel chains to privately owned rentals that travellers usually rent on a weekly or daily basis.
Because air travel is limited on the islands of Netherlands Antilles, the best way to access is through the harbours and ports. Kralendijk is the capital city of Bonaire and has a major port. Philipsburg is the capital of Sint Maarten and is one of the busiest ports of the Antilles. There are regular flights from Amsterdam and other US destinations to Willemstad.