Aruba

If an island could be awarded Miss Congeniality, Aruba would win. They don’t call themselves “one happy island” for nothing. That may be one reason Aruba ranks high on our “most-visited” list. With an impressive variety of all-inclusive accommodations, great beaches, and diverse excursions for every taste and budget, this island will make you happy no matter what type of vacation you seek.

In addition, if you’re looking for a virtually rain-free getaway, Aruba’s a good bet. The island is situated just below the hurricane belt in the southern Caribbean. The result is year round temps in the 80s, low humidity, nice tradewinds, and little rain (or “liquid sunshine” as it’s most often called here).

Accommodations on Aruba include just about everything: boutique hotels, upscale resorts, or well cared for villas. Whether you seek a sequestered romantic getaway or want to be in the middle of the action, Aruba can meet anyone’s vacation criteria.

Types of visitors to Aruba run the gamut. Families spend time on one of the many sun kissed, white sand beaches. Golf and fishing are popular diversions here. Also, water sports like kayaking, Sea Trek, and tubing make for great family memories. Secluded beaches, romantic spas, and gourmet meals by candlelight lure couples and honeymooners year after year. In fact, Brides Magazine named the island one of the world’s top honeymoon destinations. Also, gay and lesbian tourists will appreciate gay friendly accommodations like Bucuti Beach Resort and the Hyatt Beach Resort and Casino.

If gambling is your thing, you’re in luck (see what we just did there?). Choose from 12 casinos where slots with everything from jackpot and nickel machines to game tables and roulette wheels await you. Not surprisingly, Aruba is often called the “Las Vegas of the Caribbean”.

Nightlife on Aruba is nothing short of spectacular, and a ride on the Kukoo Kunuku makes getting from point A to point B so much more fun. This multi-colored, open-air party ensures you’re in party mode before you even get to your first night club. And there’s a nightclub for every interest, too – the laid back Sopranos Piano Bar; urban and chic 7 West Bar; and the wildly popular BLUE Bar.

Daytime parties are popular here, too. Arubans celebrate Carnival, Dera Gai, and the island’s most popular celebration: Hi Winds. The Hi Winds celebration has become a Mecca for windsurfers, kite boarders, and various “flying” events. Some of the sports’ top competitors are local, or come from nearby Bonaire and Curacao. In the Caribbean, all competitions evolve into parties, which is certainly the case on Aruba.

Looking for that perfect souvenir? Shopping on Aruba boasts everything from local handmade specialties to upscale boutique items. T.H. Palm and Company, Juggling Fish Swimwear and Boutique, the Aruba Aloe Store and Cigar Emporium are just a few on a long list.

You can also take in some local flavor at one of the many booths at the flea market. Local food vendors offer delish fare to sate you during your intense bargain hunting expedition. Do a little one-stop shopping in picturesque Seaport Village. It’s located in Oranjestad, and teems with restaurants, themed shops and boutiques. Benches along the sidewalks provide respite for weary legs.

From casinos and a bustling bar scene to shopping opportunities and laid-back beaches, Aruba has it all. We’re convinced if you don’t find what you seek in a vacation here, it probably doesn’t exist.