I admit, writing for a beach blog, very few beaches take my breath away. Usually, as soon as I lay my eyes on a beach a sense of relief overcomes me and immediately a sense of reassurance, a sense that everything is, for that very moment [in my world], going to be all right. Then there is Playa Kenepa, on the western end of Curacao. Coming up on the beach I could not believe what I was seeing.
All the elements of ‘amazing’ were present: Cove – check, rocky outcroppings – check, soft sand – check, crystal clear azure waters – double check. In fact, it is so amazing that apparently another Caribbean island took a picture of Playa Kenepa and tried to market it as a piece of paradise found only on their island!
I was fortunate enough to see Playa Kenepa from three angles and each one was fantastic. First was from above. Walking towards the beach and seeing it reveal itself in between tree branches sent goose bumps up and down my neck and arms. It was as if I knew I had stumbled upon something special. The view from above was spectacular. Twenty-something feet above the water you could not see where the waves met the rock’s edge but you can definitely see the sandy floor and the coral rocks below. The view was overwhelming and I could not help myself, I needed to get down there FAST.
It was not until I broke the surface after my twenty-something foot plunge that I fully realized what I had just done. I remember thinking before leaping “Always aim for the darkest spot” and at the same time while in mid air “Where is the darkest spot?”
Once back on shore I looked out to the open ocean. My second view of Kenepa was perfectly framed by the two rocky cliffs that created the cove effect. I felt like I was in a TV ad, all I needed was a buzzing Blackberry to use as a skipping stone. There were people there, locals and tourists and some local proprietors selling snacks, beer and renting out beach chairs. A little touristy for my taste but the setting more than made up for it. I was fortunate enough be there on a weekday in the early afternoon, I would return to Kenepa later on in my trip only to find it swarming with people. The west side of Curacao is not as developed as the east where the majority of the population and tourists can be found so it is easily understandable that Kenepa was a hot weekend spot.
The most common mode of transportation to Kenepa would be by car but I wondered if there is a better way of getting to this place. I did – by boat.
From my studio overlooking Playa Grandi I noticed fishermen coming in and out regularly. Seeing as I was already on the west side of the island I wondered if I could convince one of the fishermen to swing around the coast and take me to Kenepa.
The boat ride was very relaxing and each time we came upon a beach it was like a surprise because they were all hidden way behind rock formations that were all made of dead coral. Needless to say, turning into Kenepa took my breath away, and once again I found myself in the water and this time waving good-bye to my friendly fisherman who just smiled, waved and shook his head.