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Christoffelberg
Mountain/Rock

Christoffelberg

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Christoffelberg

Page Type: Mountain/Rock

Location: Curacao, Netherlands, South America

Lat/Lon: 12.33610°N / 69.1233°W

Object Title: Christoffelberg

Activities: Hiking, Mountaineering, Scrambling

Season: Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter

Elevation: 1220 ft / 372 m

 

Page By: Scott

Created/Edited: Dec 7, 2005 / Dec 5, 2016

Object ID: 155116

Hits: 7994 

Page Score: 80.34%  - 12 Votes 

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Overview

Christoffelberg is the highest peak of the lower Netherlands Antilles, often known as the Dutch ABCs. The peak is located on the north end of the island of Curacao, the largest of the Dutch ABCs.

The peak is an interesting one and more impressive than the elevation indicates. The peak is rather rugged and there is an interesting scramble required to reach the rugged summit.

Most of Curacao is made of limestone, but Christoffelberg is made of metamorphic rock, mostly a hard quartzite. There are caves on the lower slopes of the mountain.

The vegetation on the mountain is very interesting and is composed of various cactus, some of them forming a forest, and other trees as well. Many iguanas, lizards, birds, including parrots, and parakeets, live on the slopes of the mountain. There are also the Curacao White Tailed Deer, but these are seldom seen.

Climbing the peak is a good way to exercise after laying around on the beach. It is one of the better hikes in the Caribbean.

Christoffelberg
Christoffelberg as seen from half way up the mountain.


Interesting Vegetation
Some of the interesting plants on Christoffelberg.


Iguana
A really big iguana that we saw on the trail to Christoffelberg.

Getting There

You can go to the Christoffel Park with public transport but this is not convenient unless you are staying on the north side of the island. Renting a car for one day is recommended.

If driving, getting out of or through Willemstad can be confusing (a phone app works fine), but once you are on the main road, navigation is easy.

Take the main southeast to northwest road on the island (Weg Naar Westpunt) to "Band'Abou" (follow signs for Westpunt). At the village Barber you follow the directions to the park. It's a very nice trip as this part of the island is not very populated.

Stop at "Landhuis Savonet" (former plantation house) this is the visitor center for the park where you pay your entrance fee (there is a gate blocking access to the park where you must show your entrance permit.

There are two starting points for climbing Christoffel. If you don't have a car, you can follow the mountain trail to the trailhead closer to the mountain.

If you have a car, you can follow the one way loop road (now paved) to the trailhead closer to the mountain.

Trailhead
The trailhead.


Routes Overview

There is really only one practical route up the mountain and that is the mountain trail. The climb usually takes half a day from the visitor center or about three hours from the closer trailhead.

There is some scrambling on the route and minor exposure. The only real difficulty is slippery rocks after rains.

Other routes don't seem practical because of all the cacti and sharp vegetation.

Christoffelberg
Map of the route up Christoffelberg.


Ridge
The ridge near the summit of Christoffelberg.

Red Tape

There is a small entrance fee required to visit the park and mountain.

See the below website for information:

CHRISTOFFEL PARK

Summit
The summit of Christoffelberg. Please take care of the mountain. Sadly, there is some spray paint on top.

When To Climb

Curacao is a dry island, especially for the Caribbean. The driest months are February through June and the wettest months are October through December.

The time of year doesn't matter too much though and a little rain can be refreshing, though it does make the rocks slippery near the summit. The wetter months are still a good time to climb the mountain and the wettest months on these islands are drier than some of the drier months in much of the other areas of the Caribbean.

The time of day however, does matter. Climbing in the morning hours is always best.

Hours for the park are as follows:

Mondays to Saturdays: 07.30 AM – 16.00 PM (No admittance after 14.30 PM).
Sundays: 06.00 AM – 15.00 PM (No admittance after 13.30 PM).

You cannot enter the park outside of these hours.

Scrambling
Scrambling on Christoffelberg in November.

Camping

Camping is not allowed on the island. There are a lot of hotels, resorts, and guesthouses all over the island.

Mountain Conditions

Weather averages for Oranjestad, Aruba are below, but the highest area around the summit will be a little wetter and a bit cooler.

CLICK FOR ORANGESTAD WEATHER FORECAST


Month High (° F ) High (° C) Low (° F ) Low (° C) in. Rain mm Rain Rain Days
Jan 86 30 76 25 1.55 39.3 8
Feb 87 30 76 25 0.81 20.6 5
Mar 88 31 77 25 0.34 8.7 2
Apr 89 32 78 26 0.46 11.6 2
May 90 32 80 26 0.64 16.3 2
Jun 90 32 80 27 0.74 18.7 3
Jul 90 32 79 26 1.25 31.7 5
Aug 91 33 80 27 1.02 25.8 4
Sep 91 33 80 27 1.79 45.5 4
Oct 90 32 79 26 3.06 77.8 7
Nov 88 31 78 26 3.70 94.0 11
Dec 87 30 77 25 3.22 81.8 11

Images

Interesting VegetationFlying iguanaView from summitSt. ChristoffelbergShade of the trees is very...Another view over the islandRoad towards the start of the...
IguanaAt the visitor centerRidgeChristoffelbergVisitor centerHighest point, 372 meters!Trailhead
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