You have arrived! You’ve been counting down the minutes to your dream vacation, and you can finally breathe a sigh of relief after a long journey. Now, drop your luggage, toss this magazine into your beach bag, and go catch that Curaçao sunset everyone raves about. Feel the sea breeze as you relax and unwind on a beach chair sipping on your favorite tropical cocktail…
I always love chatting with tourists that are visiting Curaçao for the first time or for the tenth time because there’s always something new to reveal about the many special events and experiences on this lovely island. Once a visitor myself, I fell in love with Curaçao over a decade ago and just kept coming back to visit this island paradise. With each visit, my love affair with the island grew stronger and stronger until my family and I decided to take the plunge and move here from Canada. Through the years, I have been sharing my countless stories and secrets about this hidden gem with so many tourists, but now that I’m a resident, my attachment to this island also carries a responsibility to share a deeper message: “There are no bad tourists, just uninformed travelers.” This is a statement that motivates responsible tourism to provide information and implement awareness to travelers all over the world.
At the heart of this island, with nature that is largely protected both above and below the sea, visitors can discover a little-known biodiversity located right before their eyes. Exploring from the east to the west of Curaçao, I cannot help but acknowledge the importance of sustainable ecotourism in less developed parts of the world, and I applaud volunteers, dive operators and non-profit organizations who devote their time to this cause. They passionately collaborate with clean-up operations and do their utmost to protect wildlife and marine life whilst educating both the young and old, in a fun and educational way, through a multitude of activities. One example: Curaçao’s community-based ecosystem preservation projects are regenerating missing or damaged coral by creating coral nurseries, restoring broken corals and creating coral transplantations. (more on p.52).
We can’t deny the clear shift in global sentiment towards caring for our planet, and Curaçao is no stranger to this movement as an active player in so many restoration and clean-up projects in the region. We see the value in our beautiful nature and recognize its importance to our mere survival. Thanks to the development of responsible tourism and pioneering projects in Curaçao, we hope that these initiatives will impact and strengthen awareness on a global level, bridging Curaçao with people across the seas and borders. For this reason, and in celebration of the global movement towards environmental awareness, this issue of Events Curaçao was aptly named the “20/20 Vision Edition.”
Smiles, Sheila Botton – Director of Events Curaçao