Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Curacao Kura Hulanda Museum

Curacao's Kurá Hulanda Museum houses the largest African collection in the Caribbean, and its mission is to acquire and exhibit art related to to the cultural identity of the people of Curacao, the Caribbean, and the Atlantic region.

The museum is located in the island's capital city Willemstad, and is composed of 15 buildings. The restored 18th and 19th century Dutch Colonial Caribbean buildings are located on the site of a former slave yard and merchant's home.  

The museum complex is also home to the Sandton Kura Hulanda Hotel & Spa
one of the Small Luxury Hotels of the World 

Kura Hulanda in the native Papiamentu language means Dutch Courtyard, and the island's Dutch Colonial historic district is a UNESCO World Heritage site. 

Local artist Nel Simon's remarkable bronze statue is the first object seen from the street when entering the museum. 

The large statue shows a woman's face from one side - and the continent of Africa from the other side. 

Kura Hulanda is one of the most interesting museums I have visited as the exhibits are in multiple sections - taking you from indoors to the outdoor space creating a circle of history

The exhibits showcase the chronicle of the Origins of Man, the African slave trade, West African Empires, Pre-Colombian gold, Mesopotamian relics, Egyptian/Middle Eastern artifacts, and also includes African American history. 

The museum is the vision of Jacob Gelt Dekker who founded and privately funded with an initial  $6 million investment through the Jade foundation. 

Before you enter the actual museum building there are so many works of art to be viewed in the gardens. At every turn history seems to come alive. The painted wall mural characters fit so well into the historical time period. 

As I entered the property, the pathway and buildings reminded me of the narrow side streets of the French Quarter in New Orleans. 

Painted Murals in the Museum Gardens

Make sure to include the museum on your list of things to do when visiting Curacao. 

Sandton Kura Hulanda Resorts is comprised of the Sandton Kura Hulanda Hotel & Spa in downtown Willemstad, and the Sandton Kura Hulanda Lodge & Beach Club on Curacao's west end.
Visit the site for more info about the resorts and museum.

Curacao - A difference kind of Caribbean experience

Happy Travels
Travel 2 the Caribbean


  1. Nice Photos of the museum Linda...Unfortunately, when I arrived at the museum it was already closed but I was able to walk around the exterior. The art work and statue garden surrounding the entire complex are incredible.

  2. Thanks for stopping by Mary! So sorry you were unable to see the exhibits. Unfortunately the pics I took inside did not turn out well due to the lighting, but the museum is a worthwhile visit - just an amazing amount of history. On your next visit block out a few hours, as it takes awhile to tour, and have a lovely lunch at the cafe. I really loved our visit to Curacao - such a unique destination, and the pastel colors are awesome.

  3. Hi Linda, first time visiting your blog. I enjoyed reading through this post. Indeed it's a special museum. It is put together in an artistic way that makes it fun learn about such a harsh subject. Not too long ago I found out that its called Kura Hulanda because that area used to be called Hulanda (Holland) in the past. Not really sure why, but I thought it was an interesting fact.