Ideal for water sports
Ideal location near the Palm Beach area
Aruba is famous for its magnificent beaches lapped by gentle waves and for the constant trade winds that refresh its coastline. With stable temperatures of 27 degrees and very little rain, the island offers idyllic sunshine and beach holidays, especially at Palm Beach, on the Caribbean coast, where Aruba's best hotels are to be found. Luxury resorts welcome guests who would like to spend their time swimming, sunbathing and savouring delicious gourmet meals and tropical drinks. However, the beaches are just the beginning. Holidaymakers staying at Aruba's best hotels will also be able to enjoy water sports and visit places that are truly fascinating.
To the north of Palm Beach, Aruba hotel guests will find Hadicurari beach, where strong winds make it ideal for windsurfing. The brightly coloured sails stand out against the sparkling waters of Hadicurari, which was once a fishing village and which is now devoted to water sports. The Hi-Winds windsurf and kite-boarding tournament takes place here every June. Continuing north, travellers will reach the California lighthouse, which stands guard over the north-western tip of the island. The lighthouse got its name from a steam ship that was wrecked in the area (and not the American state) and offers amazing 360-degree views. Exploring the Atlantic coast, travellers will be struck by the spectacular views of rugged cliffs and strong waves on the wildest side of the island. The Bushiribana ruins are another place of interest for tourists; these are the remains of a gold mine from which 3 million euros of precious metal were extracted during the nineteenth century. Inland, travellers will find Aruba's donkey sanctuary, where these loveable animals nuzzle the hands of visitors and eagerly gobble up the treats offered to them. At the nearby ostrich farm, these big-eyed birds strut and peck at any food that is given them. There are knowledgeable guides who will explain ostrich habits. Did you know, for example, that the burying-its-head-in-the-sand story is just a myth? No visit to Aruba would be complete without a visit to the Arikok National Park, with its rich landscapes of caves, sand dunes and limestone cliffs, all of them densely populated with wildlife. Goats, donkey and iguanas roam free in this arid terrain.
City delights are concentrated in Oranjestad, the capital of the island of Aruba. The narrow building in the city showcase the Dutch influence. Structurally, these houses would fit right in in Amsterdam, but these island versions are painted in tropical shades of pink, aquamarine and lime green. Aruba is an autonomous member of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, which acquired the island in 1636 from its previous Spanish rulers, who gave it away when they failed to find gold there. In the course of time, it became an important bunker for supplying international trade. As a result of this mixture of inhabitants, the local dialect is a mixture of Spanish, Portuguese, Dutch and English known by the name of Papiamento. Bon Bini means "welcome" in this language and is also the name of a folk festival, which is celebrated every Tuesday in Oranjestad. Traditional dancers, little food stalls and handicraft sellers take to the street for several hours. This is a taste of the Amerindian culture that held sway before the arrival of the Europeans.