Otrobanda, together with Punda, forms the historic city of Curaçao. Just like Punda, Otrobanda also has a lot to offer. In 1707 Otrobanda was developed, because Punda became overpopulated. The Dutch who then were in charge of the island built new houses and buildings, creating a new neighborhood called: Otrobanda, meaning the other side and referring to the other side of the water. In Otrobanda there is mainly Dutch architecture to be seen.

A famous spot in Otrobanda is the Rif Fort. The fort was built in 1828 to defend Curaçao from the invasion of pirates and enemies. Today the fort is used as a tourist attraction that features small boutiques, local restaurants, trendy bars and live entertainment and so on. The Rif Fort is very nice in the evening and especially in the weekend. There is a lot of entertaining that brings locals and tourist together, a place to be!

Another popular spot in Otrobanda is Brionplein or Awasá (salt water). Brionplein is a square in Otrobanda named after Admiral Pedro Luis Brión, a Curaçaoan who contributed much to the South American freedom struggle in the 19th century. A statue of him can be seen on the square. Many festivals and events are organized on the Brionplein. Locals do hang around often on the square to have a few drinks or to just recover from the sun.

Furthermore, next to the Rif Fort is one of the first high-end shopping malls of Curaçao, Renaissance Mall. You'll also find the Starbucks and one of our busiest cinema there. The Renaissance Mall is part of the Renaissance Hotel and Casino.

In Otrobanda there is only one main road (Breedestraat) with various electronics and clothing stores. Most clothing stores in Otrobanda are in the hands of Indians and Arabs. They sell affordable clothing for the locals of Curaçao.

The largest hospital in Curaçao, the Curacao Medical Centre, is also located in Otrobanda. You will always see many local people on the Breedestraat who are on their way to the hospital. They usually stay in the neighborhood to eat something and chat with others who also had/has an appointment at the hospital.

In Otrobanda you will find the only viaduct on the island. Below this viaduct is a coffee bar where locals (the elderly) often get their coffee, tea or rum. They get here in the early morning until late in the afternoon.

Discover the beauty of Otrobanda. Walk towards the Sint Elizabeth Hospital starting from the Queen Emma Bridge, so you can admire all the beauty and unique of Otrobanda. If you want to admire the colored houses and Dutch architecture in Otrobanda we recommend you to take a walk through the alleys.

NOTE: Please take care for your safety when walking in an alley.

Image credits: Anji Barton