"Things That Make You Go.....WOW!!!" Top 5 Page for this destination Aruba by SabrinaSummerville

Aruba Travel Guide: 1,039 reviews and 2,820 photos

Full of Pleasant Surprises

When I told people I'd be ringing in the New Year in Aruba the first question most of them asked was "Where's Aruba?"

One or two people who did know it said "But there's nothing to see or do there." These were all people who had visited for a day as part of a cruise package. Let me tell you, they were all so very wrong.

Aruba is an amazing island, full of surprises at every turn.

Of course, we were lucky to have fellow VTer Pushi Rubiano and her Husband as our personal guides, so we saw parts of the island that perhaps very few tourists get to see. While the scenery isn't the lush tropical kind of thing that most people expect from the Caribbean, the landscape is more than interesting as my photographs will attest. The picture here is of a dead Divi Divi tree ...... but more of that later.

Animal Magic

One of the things I really noticed about Aruba is the wealth of animal life that abounds. It's literally a paradise for bird watchers. I spent hours on the beach watching the pelicans dive for fish, and delighted in discovering brightly coloured black and orange Scotts Orioles at the breakfast table scraping the sugar packets. Iguanas are everywhere and look like miniature dinosaurs. They all look so different and are very smart - in fact I am convinced that some of these little guys pose for pictures as they look at you with their beady little eyes.

I also saw lizards and snakes (ok, one dead snake), donkeys, goats, all wild ..... and the list goes on.

Colourful Architecture

One of the things that attracted me to Aruba in the first place was pictures of the stunning and brightly coloured Dutch looking buildings that I had seen in books and brochures. The reality is every bit as stunning as the advertisements.

The buildings in Oranjestad, in particular, have this very Dutch appearance. Some of the smaller shopping centres on the island, such as the one at the Alhambra Casino, try to emulate this image and the result is very pleasant eye candy. Heading inland, the theme of colour is continued in the painting of the family homes of the islanders.

  • Last visit to Aruba: Jan 2007
  • Intro Updated May 9, 2016
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Reviews (34)

Comments (32)

  • briantravelman's Profile Photo
    Apr 26, 2014 at 1:38 AM

    Or they ask, "Isn't that where that girl dissapeared?"
    I also had the same impression of Aruba as your friends. I knew where it was, but I always thought it was ugly, and there is nothing to do, until a little invention called "Google Earth" came along.
    I always wanted to visit all the ABC islands on one trip, spending 3 days on each island, but I am glad we visited only Aruba. There is so much to see. The only thing it's missing is forts. We spent 5 days there, and it wasn't enough to see everything I wanted to.
    I'll be honest, I was right about the ugly part. We have nicer deserts in the U.S., but the architecture beaches, and caves, were beautiful. And the people! OMG, THE PEOPLE! I've never met such incredible people! The only reason I would return is for the people. The wildlife is amazing as well. There were a few animals I wanted to see, but didn't get to. I would return for the people and wildlife.

    • SabrinaSummerville's Profile Photo
      Apr 27, 2014 at 1:19 PM

      I subsequently visited Bonaire also.

    • briantravelman's Profile Photo
      Apr 27, 2014 at 1:26 PM

      Oh, in the same trip? I will just visit Bonaire on a trip to Curacao. I will go for 9 or 10 days this time, and spend maybe 5 days on Curacao, and 3 days on Bonaire. Curacao is the most expensive. I think I would like Curacao the most. Willemstad was always number 1, on my list of cities to visit in the Caribbean.

  • staindesign's Profile Photo
    Dec 2, 2013 at 7:01 PM

    Lovely page! I always enjoy the personal side of pages :)

  • Marisola's Profile Photo
    Jul 29, 2011 at 1:25 PM

    Nice tips and pics of Aruba. I love the Caribbean!!! I just got back from a month in St. Martin!!! I've got lots of work to do!!!

  • lifeisabeach's Profile Photo
    Jun 25, 2010 at 4:23 PM

    love your pictures of Aruba

  • Jul 17, 2009 at 6:17 AM

    My husband and I are heading to Aruba in a week! Thanks so much for your tips! Very helpful - and I hope your Mum is doing better!

  • balhannah's Profile Photo
    Nov 3, 2008 at 1:54 PM

    Excellent page and photos on Aruba. If we visit, it will be on a cruise. I love Birds, have Orioles in my garden, not as pretty as that one, mine are green with a red eye.

  • MoNewcamp's Profile Photo
    Sep 5, 2008 at 12:19 PM

    heading to Aruba 1st time March 09 thanks for the great trips

  • SarahEire's Profile Photo
    Jun 22, 2008 at 6:25 AM

    Great Pages on Aruba. I am going for New Years this year and already can't wait.

  • sunlovey's Profile Photo
    Apr 22, 2008 at 7:33 AM

    Have found your restaurant reviews in Aruba MOST helpful! Thank you so much for all the detail! Will be going there this Thursday and had yet to find favorable, non-touristy reviews of places to eat there. Thanks again!

  • Basaic's Profile Photo
    Mar 18, 2008 at 6:16 PM

    Nice Aruba page; but where is the photo of you on the beach?


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