Besides the beautiful beaches with clear blue water and soft white sand, Curacao also has beautiful rugged nature. To discover that, you have to go to the north coast. Tip for this: go to Shete Boka National Park.
On the north side of the island, near Westpunt, is Shete Boka National Park. Follow the road to Westpunt until after Christoffel Park, then you will find Shete Boka on your right. The park is an area of 10 kilometers of rugged nature along the coast with, the name Shete Boka says it all, 7 bokas. On this side of the island, the sea is much rougher and therefore the waves hit the limestone cliffs. This makes for an impressive sight.
You can drive through the park from boka to boka with your own (rental) car, but do so quietly and stay on the designated path. You will encounter hefty potholes and also some hefty rocks that you have to drive over. In itself, you can also cross this with a small rental car, but if you go cross-country, you have a great chance of damaging the car and nature.
Did you know that Shete Boka National Park was named the 2022 Best Caribbean Attraction in Curacao in USA Today’s 10Best Readers’Choice Awards?
Enjoying natural phenomena
Shete Boka is one of Curacao’s unique activities. Watching the waves crash on the rocks is hugely impressive. If you are in Curacao during the rainy season (September to December), the park is in bloom, which makes it even more beautiful to visit Shete Boka National Park. Is it a less sunny day? Then this is the perfect activity. But the park is also good to combine with a few beaches on West Point such as Playa Kalki or Playa Lagun.
Shete Boka consists mainly of volcanic rock on which limestone has developed. From left to right is Boka Wandomi on the far left and here you will also find the natural bridge. Next to it you will find Boka Tabla and the cave. A little further to the right is Boka Kalki and on the far right you have Boka Pistol. Are you more athletic and enjoy hiking? Then you can choose one of two trails. Route 1 runs from Boka Kalki along the coast to Boka Pistol and route 2 takes you along the lava rock around Boka Wandomi, to the natural bridge and on toward Boka Tabla.
If you don’t feel like doing one of the hiking trails, you can also just drive by car from boka to boka.
Amenities in the park
You can park your car at each boka, making it easy to drive through Shete Boka Park at your own pace. You can bring your own food and drink, and even animals that can be leashed are allowed. There are restrooms at the entrance to the park. Because of the rocky surface, the park is difficult for people in wheelchairs or those with mobility problems. To get to some bokas you must first walk a path through nature, these are recommended only if you have good mobility.
Bring drinks with you!
Note: chances are you’ll be hiking in the park when the sun is glorious. But be careful then, because it can be quite hot. Therefore, take plenty of water with you while hiking, and feel free to take occasional breaks.
Sea turtle sanctuary
Some bokas have already deepened due to years of waves hitting the rocks. Here you will find small rocky beaches where you can enjoy the view. The park was established in 1994 to protect important nesting sites for sea turtles. From May to December is the nesting season and if you are lucky you can even see, 3 different species, sea turtles laying their eggs at Boka Kalki.
Opening hours and rates
Shete Boka National park is open 7 days a week from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., but you can enter until 4 p.m. Once on the grounds, you can purchase a comprehensive map for 1 guilder. That way you know exactly where to go. The entrance fee for Shete Boka is Naf 25.75 for an adult, Naf 2.- for children between 6-12 years of age, and children up to 5 years of age may enter the park for free.
Shete Boka is definitely worth visiting. Combine it with a day at the beach on one of the beautiful beaches towards Westpunt, and you really will have a top day!