Since he first set foot on Aruba three years ago, famous standup comedian Ray Ellin knew he wanted to spend more time on the island. He started hosting and producing his Aruba Ray’s Standup Comedy show four times a year at the Aruba Marriott Resort & Stellaris Casino, bringing along top notch US comedians to perform with him. The show is not only a big success in Aruba, but there’s nothing like it in the entire Caribbean. In this article Ray shares with you his favorite sightseeing spots, restaurants and his undying love for his Aruba.
Boston Boy turns Beach Lover
I was never a fan of the beach before. Growing up in Boston I loved it when my grandparents took me to their farm, I did like the outdoors, but the beach? Nah, not so much. But that was until I came to Aruba and saw its beaches; I just fell in love with the beauty of it. Actually the first time I ever snorkeled in my life was here in Aruba. Also, I can’t remember the last time my 72 year old mother went to the beach or into the water, she always stayed out of the sun, and when I brought her to Baby Beach last year, she just lit up. She was so happy to be in the Aruban sun and water.
What’s so special about Aruba?
People get excited for different things: art, cars, and coffee mugs; everyone has something that gets them going, and I can’t expect everyone to feel the way I do about Aruba. I have been to almost every other island in the Caribbean but there is just no place like Aruba. So what makes Aruba so special? It’s the simplest things like: you can drink the water, use US dollars, the people are nice, they understand English; all these things make your vacation so comfortable. And then throw in things like: the most beautiful beaches in the world, terrific restaurants, and beautiful landscapes; there is just no place like it!
If I didn’t have to make a living in the States, I would be living here. I genuinely don’t see myself as a tourist, rather an adopted Aruban.
What do you do during your vacation?
Snorkeling at Mangel Halto, kayaking at Palm Beach, exploring the culture and making Aruban friends but what I especially love is driving up to the California lighthouse and stop to get a coconut and enjoy the stunning view. Just before you reach the lighthouse along the road there is a spot where all the water hits the rocks and gets spat back out, it looks like a nest of waves, so that’s what I call it, “The Nest of Waves”. I’ll go there a few times each year. The comedians I brought there were absolutely awed by this.
After just a few days in Aruba, my New York friends and colleagues lose their tough exteriors. One of them said “I got the “yuck” off me. That’s what Aruba and its natural calming qualities does for you, it gets the ‘"Yuck" of you!
Sharing the Love
When I bring comedians or friends over, I always try to encourage them to venture off the beach and explore the island. I understand they’re tired, work all the time and just want to veg out on the beach, but there is so much to explore! For example, the Donkey Sanctuary, you don’t have that stuff in New York, it’s so charming, or the pretty little Alto Vista chapel.
Or going to the Natural Pool, you have to earn the right to see that, you have to navigate the bumpiest jeep ride of your life, which makes you appreciate the destination even more!
Ray Ellin’s Top Attractions:
- The Natural Pool, it’s cathartic
- The Three Bridges
- The North Kaap
- Mangel Halto for Snorkeling
- Baby Beach
Ray Ellin’s Favorite Upscale Restaurants:
- Quinta del Carmen
- Screaming Eagle
- Two Fools and a Bull
- La Vista at the Aruba Marriott Resort
Things Ray wants to do during his next visit:
- Learn how to kite surf
- Go for drinks and pizza at Urataka center
- Climb the Hooiberg
- Scuba diving at Rocky Beach (very secluded beach)
- Ride another horse to the Natural Pool
Engage with Aruba via social media at www.facebook.com/ArubaFans or @Aruba on Twitter. For more information regarding Ray Ellin's next set of shows here in Aruba in October please visit: www.ArubaComedy.com or http://www.aruba.com/things-to-do/ray-ellin-standup-comedy-aruba.