How to Get Around in Curaçao

Curaçao is one of those destinations just waiting to be explored. Beautiful bays, natural parks, and captivating sights can be found all over the island. To visit all the touristy hotspots, local favorites, and off-the-beaten-path hidden gems, it is important to know how to get around the island. 

The best way to get around in Curaçao is by renting a car, which offers flexibility and independence to discover the island’s many attractions at your own pace. Alternatively, taxis and guided tours are convenient when you prefer not to drive.

When it comes to getting around in Curaçao, having wheels is key. Walking under the sun isn’t the easiest and the public transport system doesn’t quite reach all the top spots, including those gorgeous beaches and must-see attractions. 

How to get around in Curaçao - Cruise Port

From my personal experience, I highly recommend renting a car, hailing a taxi, or joining a guided tour to truly soak in all that Curaçao has to offer.

How to get around in Curaçao

Being from the Netherlands, I was used to hopping on the train or taking the bus to visit several destinations across the country. So when I traveled to Curaçao for the first time, it was quite a challenge for me to get around the island since I didn’t have much driving experience.

Curaçao is best to be explored by car. This way you can visit the best beaches and popular tourist attractions at your own pace, without any stress or worry about schedule or reliability.

Public transportation in Curaçao offers convenience for short distances in specific areas; however, it does not provide access to tourist attractions or popular beaches. While the network is primarily designed to serve residential areas, it lacks routes to major sightseeing destinations.

Taxis in Curaçao are safe and the perfect way to get from A to B quickly. The downside is that they are very pricey, that’s why most people prefer to rent a car that allows them to travel independently because taxi costs add up very quickly.

For those who prefer not to drive but still want to explore multiple sights and beaches in a single day, booking a tour is often the ideal choice. Knowledgeable local guides will accompany you throughout the island, taking you to the best attractions Curaçao has to offer. 

In addition, many tours provide convenient hotel or cruise port pick-up services!

Check out our Tour & Excursion page for a diverse range of options and recommendations.

Renting a car in Curaçao 

Since Curaçao is not constructed for pedestrians, the majority of tourists visiting the island opt to rent a car. It is the cheapest and most convenient way to explore the island and all its wonders.

You can find car rental desks from various household names like Sixt, Alamo, Avis, Sunny Cars, and Budget at Hato Airport. Upon arrival, you can locate the car rental area on the right.

There are also plenty of local car rental companies on the island such as D&D Car Rental, Dushi Rentals, Prins Car Rental, or Just Drive Curaçao. By choosing these options, you will support local entrepreneurs and give back to the community, which is something Ricardo and I strongly advocate for.

Curaçao is a diverse island with its sights and beaches spread all over the map. Fortunately, the island is small compared to other Caribbean destinations, so traveling from east to west is just an hour’s drive.

This allows you to create an itinerary to visit multiple places in one day.

In our latest blog we will tell you important reasons why you need to rent a car in Curaçao.

Konvoi bus Curaçao public trasportation

Public transportation in Curaçao

Public transportation in Curaçao is primarily designed to serve locals by connecting various residential neighborhoods across the island. It is not a convenient option for exploring popular beaches and tourist spots.

That being said, public transportation is not always reliable, especially if you’re on a tight schedule, and some routes are more frequent than others.

When I used to live near Mambo Beach, busses would stop every 5 minutes, but my friend, who lived in Westpunt sometimes needed to wait a couple of hours to catch the bus to downtown Willemstad.

Most routes require strict planning if you want to use public transport to get around in Curaçao. Be sure to carry a bottle of water and a taxi’s phone number with you, just in case. You wouldn’t want to find yourself stranded in an unfamiliar location amidst the tropical heat.

For more information on how to get around in Curaçao using the local bus system, I refer to our blog about Public transportation in Curaçao.

Taxis in Curaçao

Taxis are a safe and fast way to get from A to B. Some taxis even take you on a tour around the island for a day. From my own experience, I can say that taxi drivers are friendly and keen to tell you all about our Dushi island!

There are several taxi ranks on the island. You will find them at the airport, downtown Willemstad, and the cruise port.

There’s not an official taxi rank at Mambo Beach, but taxis will pass by quite often, so it’s likely to catch one at the entrance of the boulevard. 

Unfortunately, taxis in Curaçao are a bit on the pricey side. And if you’re using taxis mainly to get around the island, those costs can stack up pretty quickly. A taxi ride of approximately 10 minutes can easily cost $20.

More information about taxis in Curaçao and rates can be found in one of our latest blogs: Taxis in Curaçao: A First-timers Guide.  

Tours and excursions in Curaçao

One of the things I love the most about our island is its diversity of activities. You can visit the beaches, go on a culinary hunt, or learn more about the history that shaped the island’s character

Booking a tour to get around Curaçao is a great option if you don’t want to drive yourself, but still want to go sightseeing.

My recommendation is to go either for a guided group tour, or a personalized private tour, depending on your preferences.

Group tours tend to be more cost-effective as expenses are shared among participants. Secondly, they offer opportunities for socializing with fellow travelers, which can lead to forming new friendships during your vacation in Curaçao. Also: their pre-planned itineraries will give you more of an idea on what to expect.

When it comes to private tours, I found that they offer a wonderful way to get around in Curaçao. Especially when you’re dealing with a limited time frame.  With a tailor-made itinerary, you get to visit only the places that truly excite you. Plus, private tours in Curaçao are very efficient since many attractions and beaches are widely spread across the island. 

Want to go on an adventure? Get to know more by visiting our blog about Private Tours in Curaçao

Curaçao Cruise Port Colorful Houses

Explore Willemstad on foot

Downtown Willemstad is a different story. The famous city center of Curaçao is best to be explored on foot. The streets of Punda, Otrobanda, Pietermaai and Scharloo are pedestrian-friendly and offer many things to discover by walking through its cozy streets and alleys.

Whenever I have a chat with tourists, I always ask them if they have walked the Queen Emma bridge. It is a fun and unique experience to cross the Anna Bay to Punda, using the famous floating pontoon bridge. 

Otrobanda is the area where you can find murals and street art from the Kaya Kaya project. Artworks that depict typical Curaçao scenes can be found in the streets of Ser’i Otrobanda. Walking along these beautiful murals is a fun and free activity to do.

The colorful streets of Pietermaai are a must-visit for social media-worthy photos. Vibrant colonial buildings offer the perfect backdrop to take extraordinary pictures with friends or family.

After sunset, Pietermaai turns into a gastronomic hotspot where you can enjoy dinner and drinks in one of the many lively, yet cozy establishments.  

Planning to visit downtown Willemstad? Read our Full Guide to Exploring the Capital of Curaçao.

Getting around in Curaçao from the Cruise Port

The port of Curaçao is located in the heart of Willemstad. The city center is walkable from the pier, as are many sights, restaurants and shops in the downtown district.

However, if you want to visit the beaches and well-known tourist hotspots like the Hato Caves, the Curaçao Distillery, or Shete Boka National Park, you need to rent a car, take a taxi, or book a tour.


Grote Knip Beach Curaçao

Curaçao Private Tour

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The most convenient option to get around in Curaçao from the cruise port is by booking a tour. It offers pick-up right at the pier and you will have a worry-free day since you don’t need to plan your itinerary or return trip. 

All details will be taken care of and all you need to do is enjoy your shore excursion on our beautiful island.  

Check out our extensive Curaçao Cruise Port Guide for helpful information when visiting our port.


After spending years exploring Curaçao, Ricardo and I concluded that getting around by car is truly the way to go. Let me share our experience with you.

Navigating Curaçao by car gives us the freedom to discover activities and beaches at our own pace. 

No rushing to catch buses or worrying about missing out on must-see spots due to limited transportation options. With a car, every corner of Curaçao is within reach, and I appreciate the flexibility it gives us.

Sure, public transportation is an option, but its network mainly covers residential areas, making it impractical for travelers who want to visit the beaches and touristic hotspots as there are no bus stops around.

And while taxis offer convenience, their steep fares can quickly drain your budget, leaving you with less to spend on the experiences that truly matter.

In short: renting a car, taking a taxi, or booking a tour is the best way to get around in Curaçao. 

Roxanne Verheesen

Hi there! My name is Roxanne , 30 years old and born in the Netherlands, I've visited Curaçao for the first time in 2011 and moved to the island one year later. Love to write, snorkel and watch pinky-orangish sunsets at the beach.

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