Curacao: 2011’s latest go-to destination

Curaçao is the place to go in 2011, as you'll know if you've been reading some of the many "hot destination" lists issued recently.

The Caribbean island was selected as one of the "Top 21 Places We're Going in 2011" by travel guide Fodor's, one of the "Hottest Destinations for 2011" by AOL Travel and one of the "Destinations to Watch in 2011" by SmarterTravel, as well as taking two awards from Scuba Diving magazine.

The reviews are good news for the future of this small (444 square kilometers) island, which lies off the coast of Venezuela, is home to around 140,000 people and achieved independence from the Netherlands only last year.

"Superb Dutch colonial architecture is but one of its assets; a terrific culinary scene, Latin-meets-Caribbean vibe, rich culture, and active lifestyle – from kayaking to hiking and diving – conspire to create one of the Caribbean's most cosmopolitan getaways," said Fodor's.