Aruba should be on everyone’s bucket list, words can’t describe how beautiful this island is. I’ve lived here my entire life and it still amazes me every time. A lot of times people tend to think that Aruba is only white sandy beaches and crystal blue waters, but Aruba is so much more diverse than this! There is so much to do on this tiny island and there is just never enough time to do it all.
1. Visit the lighthouse
The lighthouse on the north side of the Island has a great view! During the day you can buy a coconut from the coconut truck and for a small fee you can climb up to the top of the lighthouse. My favorite thing is to come here at night with some snacks and watch all the lights of the houses
2. Watch the sunset at Eagle Beach
Eagle beach is probably the most known beach on Aruba, it is always super busy here. During sunset hours almost everyone goes to dinner and the beach is a lot more quite. I love to come here with family, sit in the sand and watch the sun go down. PS. These two pictures are taken at two different times, first one before the sun went down and the second one when it was already gone
3. Take a Helicopter ride
This is the only activity that I haven’t done myself yet, but it looks insane! I’ve heard lots of great things about doing a helicopter ride in Aruba and would love to do it real soon. I mean look at this view?! Picture by Dominique Lopez
4. Visit the Animal Shelter
At the Aruba Animal Shelter you can adopt dogs, cats, puppies and kittens. I already have tons of those at home, but I do like to visit and play with the animals here. You can also come by with a donation of food or toys, anything helps! I’ve put this activity on the top 10 must do’s list, because it is a fun place to visit, but most importantly it is an place that could use all the support it can get. Aruba has a big number of stray cats & dogs and other than small foundations trying to help, not much gets done about this problem. So if you get the chance, definitely go and check it out!
5. Participate in the Aruba Carnival
This is the event everyone is always waiting for! Carnival period is from January till February and during this time there are lots of parades, kid parades, night parades (fakel and lighting parade), and a few other parades located in different parts of the island. During this time everyone is in a great mood and wearing the most gorgeous outfits! These stunning pictures were taken by Edrick Korzendijk.
6. Go Paddle boarding
I’ve always wanted to try this, but didn’t get the chance till a couple of weeks ago. Let me tell you something.. it is way harder than it looks! It is a lot of fun, I would recommend doing this with a whole group of friends. You can contact Dennis of Aruba Surf & Paddle School to rent paddle boards or take a beautiful tour in nature.
7. Eat a Pastechi
Pastechi is a Caribbean pastry filled with Gouda cheese and fried up delicious. They can be served for breakfast and they are ridiculously addictive. Me and my friends used to get Pastechi during our school breaks all the time! You can find them all over the island, one of the shops is called The Pastechi house and its right in the main street (this place is a bit more pricey than the others Patechi places though).
8. Explore the island on horseback
I’ve been riding horses ever since I was 4 years old and explored almost all the ranches on the island. Riding on some of of the most beautiful beaches and discovering Aruba’s nature is one of the best experiences there is. But please do research before booking a horse tour, I would say more than half of the tours here on Aruba do not treat their horses well. I can’t tell you which ones these are, but if you come across one of these ranches don’t participate when the horses don’t get treated well. One of the tours you can check out is Ranch Loco, the horses look super healthy and you ride along the beaches to the Natural pool where you stop for a swim!
9. Eat at Quinta del Carmen
Quinta Del Carmen is a special fine dinning restaurant in Aruba as the building was the first hospital on the island. The monument was build in 1918 and is beautifully preserved. There are sitting areas in the front and back of the building as well as inside. I love how the ambience at Quinta del Carmen feels intimate and romantic.
The service is amazing, there are enough options on the menu and the food is fantastic from appetizers all the way to desert. Considering the amazing food and the historical touch, Quinta del Carmen is a must visit when coming to Aruba! They are situated in Bubali which is close to the hotels area. Our favorite dishes: the Steak with Blue cheese & Lobster tail with scrimps.
10. Boat tour around the island
Aruba is great for snorkeling and diving! If you want to go off on your own, check out the best spots to visit here. If you want to take a boat tour where you can stop at different spots, have some drinks and maybe even watch the sunset then you are on the right island! Aruba has plenty of different boats tours and I totally recommend spending a few hours on one! The tour I took was from Jolly Pirates which makes a stop at the Antilla Ship wreck, this is a sunken ship with a beautiful sight.
Hope you guys enjoyed my Aruba guide and let me know which of these you’ve done or which ones I’ve missed out!