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Thread: First trip to Aruba!

  1. #1
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    Thumbs up First trip to Aruba!

    I've been lurking on the site for a while and finally decided to register and post...

    My girlfriend and I are going to Aruba for the first time. We leave this Sunday May 29th and come back the following Sunday, June 5th. We're staying at the Occidental. From the forum I found out about Madi, so we'll be doing a tour with her (hopefully, waiting to hear back). We'd like to do some snorkeling as well, does anyone have any suggestions for where we should go? I was reading that Arashi Beach is a good place to go for snorkeling. Also, will we be able to snorkel right off the Occidental beach? Are there any reefs closeby that we could swim to?

    Thanks,
    Jake

    EDIT: just got back confirmation from Madi that we're going on her tour Friday 5/3.
    Last edited by Jcb890; 05-23-2011 at 12:08 PM.

  2. #2
    Senior Member Arubalisa's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jcb890 View Post
    I've been lurking on the site for a while and finally decided to register and post...
    Welcome to the forum.

    We'd like to do some snorkeling as well, does anyone have any suggestions for where we should go? I was reading that Arashi Beach is a good place to go for snorkeling. Also, will we be able to snorkel right off the Occidental beach? Are there any reefs closeby that we could swim to?

    Thanks,
    Jake
    There are no reefs to swim to off of the Occidental.

    Palm Beach is famous for it's powder white sand beaches.
    The ocean bottom is the same. The reefs are very far off the beach and besides the boat traffic, too far to swim to.

    The only snorkeling on Palm Beach will be south of the Riu near the Divi Phoenix resort.


    There is a break that goes about 80 yards out into the water. http://www.wikimapia.org/#lat=12.5663237&lon=-70.0513762&z=17&l=0&m=a&v=2 The water is very calm there. There is also a little rock island
    click on thumbnail to enlarge

    Above you should be able to find some fish, octopus, etc. There is a little Polis (Police) substation right there on the beach (point of reference- between the Westin and Phoenix). This is a perfect spot on Palm Beach if you just want to do some snorkeling on your own for free

    Boca Catalina is our favorite spot as well. I have directions for snorkeling Boca Catalina and Catalina Cove here

    www.arubabound.com/dive/snorkeling.htm

    How Far Catalina Cove
    www.aruba.com/forum/f10/how-far-catalina-cove-43155/

    Snorkeling Boca Catalina
    www.aruba.com/forum/tags/snorkeling%20boca%20catalina.html

    http://www.aruba.com/forum/tags/snorkeling.html

    You can reach Boca Catalina via bus. Just make sure your wwim suit is dry before boarding.

  3. #3
    Junior Member Kris10's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jcb890 View Post
    I've been lurking on the site for a while and finally decided to register and post...

    My girlfriend and I are going to Aruba for the first time. We leave this Sunday May 29th and come back the following Sunday, June 5th. We're staying at the Occidental. From the forum I found out about Madi, so we'll be doing a tour with her (hopefully, waiting to hear back). We'd like to do some snorkeling as well, does anyone have any suggestions for where we should go? I was reading that Arashi Beach is a good place to go for snorkeling. Also, will we be able to snorkel right off the Occidental beach? Are there any reefs closeby that we could swim to?

    Thanks,
    Jake

    EDIT: just got back confirmation from Madi that we're going on her tour Friday 5/3.
    From one newbie to another, Hello

    I'm sure you two are going to have a blast! Take lots of pictures and don't forget the camera charger....dang it, lol

  4. #4
    Aruba since 1979
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    Andrea J.'s Avatar
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    glad madi responded to your request.
    i am surprised.

    if you are looking for some reef snorkeling, try DEPALM island. lots of the reef is in tough shape from people walking and feeding the fish, but there is a reef nonetheless.

    depalm island is not inexpensive as it is an all inclusive property and includes lunch, snorkeling and equipment, beverages and transportation

    Quote Originally Posted by Jcb890 View Post
    I've been lurking on the site for a while and finally decided to register and post...

    My girlfriend and I are going to Aruba for the first time. We leave this Sunday May 29th and come back the following Sunday, June 5th. We're staying at the Occidental. From the forum I found out about Madi, so we'll be doing a tour with her (hopefully, waiting to hear back). We'd like to do some snorkeling as well, does anyone have any suggestions for where we should go? I was reading that Arashi Beach is a good place to go for snorkeling. Also, will we be able to snorkel right off the Occidental beach? Are there any reefs closeby that we could swim to?

    Thanks,
    Jake

    EDIT: just got back confirmation from Madi that we're going on her tour Friday 5/3.

  5. #5
    Aruba since 1979
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    Andrea J.'s Avatar
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    http://www.depalmtours.com/de-palm-island
    click above for info on depalm island

  6. #6
    Junior Member Kris10's Avatar
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    How about snorkeling at Baby Beach? I'm not sure exactly what you're hoping to see but there's lots of fish there and it's absolutely gorgeous. We LOVED Big Mama's Grill there...palapas, beer, food...ARUBA

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Arubalisa View Post
    Welcome to the forum.

    You can reach Boca Catalina via bus. Just make sure your wwim suit is dry before boarding.
    Wow! Thank you for all of the information. How far of a walk would you say the area between Divi Phoenix and the Westin is from the Occidental?

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Andrea J. View Post
    glad madi responded to your request.
    i am surprised.

    if you are looking for some reef snorkeling, try DEPALM island. lots of the reef is in tough shape from people walking and feeding the fish, but there is a reef nonetheless.

    depalm island is not inexpensive as it is an all inclusive property and includes lunch, snorkeling and equipment, beverages and transportation
    It took a while for her to get back to me, but I figured if she didn't e-mail me back I could call from he hotel when we got there anyways.

    De Palm sounds fun, thanks for the suggestion.

  9. #9
    Senior Member Arubalisa's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jcb890 View Post
    Wow! Thank you for all of the information. How far of a walk would you say the area between Divi Phoenix and the Westin is from the Occidental?
    0.40 miles from the Occidental to the rock island walking along the beach

  10. #10
    Senior Member jpsphr's Avatar
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    JCB,
    I agree with Lisa, the best snorkeling we've done is Boca Catalina. There are good sized coral formations very close to shore and it's a quieter beach than most. Our next favorite is Arashi. You may also want to hop on a snorkeling tour. Our favorite is Roberto's Water Sports (booth near Hadicurari Restaurant on Palm Beach- link below). It's inexpensive and a nice trimaran ride to Boca Catalina and the shipwreck.

    Enjoy!

    http://www.robertoswatersports.com/

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