301 – ABC Islands: The Dutch legacy in the Caribbean

The last vestiges of the once-mighty Dutch empire live on in the Caribbean in the ABC Islands–Aruba, Bonaire, and Curaçao. Islanders speak four languages, one of which is their very own, as they explain. We visit Curaçao, now independent, and wander the streets of Willemstad, its capital city. In its colonial buildings we find hints of a past glory made possible by slave trade. After a short flight by puddle jumper we land in Bonaire, still a colony, where we don Scuba gear to mingle with its incomparable marine life and hunt down the Lionfish intruders. Then we witness the extraction of uncountable tons of salt from Bonaire’s tidal flats. Finally we trek into a national park where dense groves of tall cacti are home hordes of lizards and lagoons harbor tranquil flamingos.