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Things to do in  Aruba

Welcome to Aruba

Any traveler who dips their toes into the welcoming waters of Aruba can see what makes it the most visited island in the southern Caribbean. Miles and miles of white-sand beaches stretch along its shores, where year-round beach weather is made even more palatable by the island’s location safely outside the dreaded “Hurricane Alley.” The capital of Oranjestad features colorful colonial architecture and can easily be toured on a two-hour walk. And the ends of the island are arid, craggy, windy, and uncluttered, but still less than an hour’s drive from the city. The official languages are Dutch (because the island is part of the Kingdom of the Netherlands) and Papiamento (a Spanish Creole language), but English is widely spoken. Most tours visit a mix of man-made and natural island highlights such as Bushiribana Gold Mill Ruins, the California Lighthouse, Ayo and Casibari Rock Formations, Arikok National Park, and the Natural Pool. Travelers can choose their level of adventure, covering most of the 20-mile (32-kilometer) island on a day tour: Watching the highlights from the seat of a 4x4 vehicle, riding on horseback, or rumbling over rugged terrain in an ATV. Snorkeling and scuba diving also draw visitors, as Aruba is home to the Antilla Shipwreck, now a hot spot for underwater plant and animal life, as well as a healthy reef at Arashi Beach, but both can be seen by semi-submarine tour for those who prefer to stay dry.

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Top 10 attractions in Aruba

Ayo and Casibari Rock Formations
#1

Ayo and Casibari Rock Formations

A steady pile of rock and cacti under the big open Caribbean sky, the Ayo and Casibari rock formations are, nevertheless, an Aruba highlight. They offer a unique perspective of the inner workings of the volcanic forces at work on the island of Aruba and make for a great day trip exploring the island and, for the intrepid traveler willing to clamber to the top of them, a great view of the whole of Aruba. A fun opportunity for exploration, bring the family to see what geologic forces can compose with enough time, pressure and Caribbean sun....
Aruba Aloe Factory & Museum
#2

Aruba Aloe Factory & Museum

While the name of Aruba might connote white sand beaches, sunshine and tropical drinks with those little umbrellas in them, the truth is that Aruba is an amazingly diverse little island nation, and nevermore is that apparent than when visiting the Aruba Aloe Factory and Museum. Aloe is native to Aruba, and thanks to its medicinal and restorative properties, it has become one of the leading exports of the nation....
De Palm Island
#3

De Palm Island

De Palm Island is a small island off of the western coast of Aruba that attracts people from the main island looking for a new experience. In addition to hosting an array of outdoor activities including swimming, snorkeling, scuba diving and beach volleyball, De Palm Island also offers several options for those seeking rest and relaxation. All-inclusive packages make it easy to spend an entire day in the water, lounging on the beach and having your fill of unlimited food and drinks. If you can pull yourself away from the cabana, grab a snorkel and get a glimpse at the beautiful coral reefs teeming with tropical sea life, including the blue parrotfish, native only to this area. As far as family entertainment goes, this is a one-stop shop for water sports for the kids and cabanas with an open bar for the adults. You'll need to take a ferry or catamaran to the island, both of which leave regularly from Port De Palm....
Aruba (Oranjestad) Cruise Port
#4

Aruba (Oranjestad) Cruise Port

Come along on the Island Tour Excursion, which includes stops for nature and history lovers. The Natural Bridge is formed of coral limestone and is one of the largest natural bridges in the world. See the old cities of Savaneta and San Nicolas, former capitals of the island. Or, you can marvel at the Ayo Rock formation and Cave, which display some of the oldest Arawak Indian drawings on the island. For a deeper look into the economy and local products of Arbua, try the Essense of Aruba shore excursion. Participants are educated in the history and process of Aruba’s signature aloe industry, cigar factory, and beer and rum production....
Antilla Shipwreck
#5

Antilla Shipwreck

The waters of Aruba are lined with shipwrecks, thanks to the treacherous rock outcroppings that the Caribbean has long been notorious for. Luckily, these shipwrecks make for great tourist attractions and amazing dive and snorkeling sites, as they play host to scores of marine life, as well as enticing historical stories of bygone eras. The Antilla Shipwreck is Aruba’s most popular shipwreck site, named after the SS Antilla – a Hamburg America Line cargo ship. Launched in 1939, the poor Antilla operated for less than a year before running aground. Today, however, it makes for a great snorkeling and diving opportunity, as it acts as a safe-haven for the abundant sea life of the Caribbean, and lobster, sea turtles and manta rays are regularly seen here....
Bushiribana Gold Mill Ruins
#6

Bushiribana Gold Mill Ruins

The desert interior of the Caribbean island of Aruba is never more interesting than when visiting the Bashiribana Gold Mill Ruins. Set among the stark beauty of the Aruban desert and the blue Caribbean sky, the ruins are the stone remains of an old gold smelter. Established by gold prospectors hundreds of years ago and once considered sacred by the Arawak Indians, this is a serene and unexpected step into the history of Aruba and a great exploratory photo opportunity for those that love history, desert beauty or just good old-fashioned exploration....
Natural Pool
#8

Natural Pool

The Natural Pool is a tucked away basin formed by rock and volcanic stone circles that fills with ocean water. The pool is also known locally as "Conchi" or "Cura di Tortuga," because it is said that the pool was once used to hold sea turtles before they were sold (tortuga means turtle in Papiamento, the official language of the Caribbean). Visitors can swim and snorkel here, although the area is really not that big. On calm days, the pool is great for a dip, but keep in mind that swimming here is risky when waves leap the rock barrier....
Palm Beach
#9

Palm Beach

The 2 mi (3.2 km) long Palm Beach is best known as the home of Aruba's high-rise hotels. A bustling and ever expanding tourist attraction, the beach is covered with sunbathing vacationers, food and drink stands, and booths of water sport operators. There are also two piers lined with restaurants and shops, which offer entertainment as well as some much needed shade. This stretch of beach, northwest of the capital Oranjestad, is the hub for day and nighttime activities. The trendiest place in Aruba, Palm Beach is where you go for great snorkeling as well as good people-watching....
Alto Vista Chapel
#10

Alto Vista Chapel

Little could be more picturesque or more Caribbean chic than the Alto Vista Chapel on Aruba. With the big Caribbean sky and peaceful sea as your backdrop, the Alto Vista Chapel, or “Pilgrims Church,” is one of the most photographed attractions on the island. Built by Spanish missionaries in 1750, the Alto Vista Chapel still conducts services and is said to be the oldest continuously operating church in the Caribbean. Sitting alone on a hill on an island in the Caribbean, the scene is instantly inspiring, and the grounds and gardens immaculately manicured. Easily one of the nicest stops while out exploring Aruba, the Alto Vista Chapel is not to be missed....

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Top Beaches in Aruba

Top Beaches in Aruba

How to Spend 1 Day in Aruba

How to Spend 1 Day in Aruba

How to Spend 2 Days in Aruba

How to Spend 2 Days in Aruba

Frequently Asked Questions

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