- Aruba – One Happy Island
- The Cayman Islands, by Katy Hallmark (age 14)
- Jamaica Farewell
- A Touch of Barbadian Luxury by Gabriele Scholes
- Guadeloupe Islands – The French West Indies
- A Caribbean First by Chris and Sue Webb
- Liming on the Strip in St Kitts
- Grenada – the Spice of the Caribbean
- The Body Holiday – Le Sport, St Lucia
- Jammin in Jamaica
Just 15 miles off the coast of Venezuela in the Caribbean sea are the Dutch Antilles, and its 3 most westerly islands are the ABC islands of Aruba, Bonaire and Curacao. Aruba’s location outside the hurricane belt makes it the perfect place for year-round sunshine – and that’s why we call it One Happy Island! Let me tell you about it and you can be, like me, One Happy Person!
Aruba is a Dutch Island and I flew with KLM via Amsterdam. It was an easy connection and before I knew it I had arrived and was in my hotel! The Mill Resort is a lovely hotel just off Palm Beach.
Palm Beach is a busy beach with lots of water sports and several bars along the stretch of sand. It is known as the high rise area as most of the hotels along this strip are large and spread out. The Hilton, the Hyatt Regency which has its own waterslide (perfect for children), and the Ritz Carlton which has beach service by Segway, means that there is a huge range of choice to suit all tastes and budgets.
Are you a snorkeller? I am! I really enjoyed my time on De Palm Island’s Paradise catamaran and a chance to snorkel in two amazing places – the calm Boca Catalina, a shallow spot towards the north of the island with crystal clear water. And then over the Antilla Shipwreck, one of the few shipwrecks in the world that is shallow enough to snorkel over rather than dive to. It is better for stronger swimmers as the current can be strong at times. However, there is a huge array of marine life and if you are lucky you may even see a turtle! Don’t worry if you’re not keen on getting wet, you can relax and enjoy the sunshine and the open bar serving the, not to be missed, Aruba Ariba cocktails and local Balashi Beer.
Just south of Palm Beach is Eagle Beach. Voted on TripAdvisor as the 4th best beach in the world it is a much quieter, peaceful beach with nesting turtles in the summer months – perfect for couples looking for romance and togetherness! Eagle Beach is known as the low rise area. Hotels here are much smaller, boutique type or family run hotels scattered along the coast, like Amsterdam Manor and its famous Passions on the Beach restaurant. A little further on is Manchebo Beach Resort & Spa, which is focused on health and wellness with a fantastic beachfront spa. In fact there is lots of choice of where to stay – all inclusive, family friendly and adult only couples!
But what I enjoyed most was Aruba itself! Its beauty, its landscape and its atmosphere! From the bright white beaches on the west coast to the contrasting desert landscape of Arikok National Park. The park covers just under 20% of Aruba with walking trails and horse riding trails. You must visit the California Lighthouse and Alto Vista Chapel in the north, and the Natural Bridge and the Balashi Gold Mill Ruins further south.
With so much to see and so little time it looks like a second visit needs to be planned! Maybe B & C?
If you’d like to know more about Aruba – I’d be delighted to tell you more.