Hello all! So excited -- just booked our first trip to Aruba for December 2016! It's a surprise for my dh's 65th BD. It's going to be so hard to keep this from him until then. Another couple will be joining us, so at least I have someone to share my excitement with in the meantime.
We are booked on Delta from ATL, staying at Manchebo Beach. I've done a LOT of reading, but I'm sure I'll have lots of questions as the time draws closer. Just wanted to say hi and let you know how helpful this forum has been. You'll have to be patient with me as I learn my way around here and how to use it all.
Welcome to the forum........ what took you so long...? You are gonna love Manchebo.... just nice and quiet and relaxing. After our stay this year.... it's our go to place for all future trips! Please, if you have any questions that I might help with just lemme know....
Thank you all so very much! To answer CP's question, I think what took us so long is that we have been visiting St. Maarten for the past 10 years and just got into a routine, I guess. But we are looking for new adventures and after our most recent trip to SXM, we talked about visiting other islands. So I decided to surprise dh with a trip to Aruba for his BD in December. It's a place we've talked about many times. How I'm going to keep this a secret for so long is anyone's guess, but I'm going to do it! Very much looking forward to experiencing the lovely island of Aruba -- everything I've read has only added to my excitement.
CP, I read your terrific recent trip report and it was very helpful. Thank you! Manchebo sounds exactly what I'm looking for.
I've booked the room, the airline tickets, and purchased trip insurance (including emergency evacuation -- which I hope we never need, but it makes me feel more secure). The only thing I've held off on is a rental car because I'm not sure if we need one; or if so, if we'll need it for the entire week. Opinions on that are much appreciated.
Thanks for the warm welcome. I am one of those people who like to do my homework and am thirsty for as much info as I can gather. Planning is half the fun!
Hi Irish, welcome to the forum. Manchebo has the most beautiful beach! There are restaurants close by that are within walking distance and the casino is across the street. So, as far as a car, you probably wouldn't need one for a week. We've never rented a car as taxis are plentiful. Buses are also convenient. That said if you want to explore a bit it would be nice to have a car for a day or two.
RE a rental car.... my wife and I are beach people and have never rented a car... it would really depend on what you wish to do while you're on the island. Some touring, you may want to rent for a day or two.... if it's just the beach and restaurants.... you'll have no problem with getting a taxi whenever you need one.... and fares are relatively cheap and government regulated.
Yes, I think that is exactly what we'll do. Take a cab from the airport to Manchebo, then cabs and buses when possible. We'll probably end up renting a car for a day or two to explore the island. Thanks for the advice!
Welcome irish. What a great Bday present. I honestly thing you will llke Aruba more than St. Maarten. So much more to do and at least I think people are more friendlier. Nobody on the beach selling you things.. water is so much prettier. No hurricanes .
You are going to have a blast and be addicted to Aruba like myself.
Boca Catalina, Arashi Beach Manchebo Beach, Eagle Beach
We've stayed at Manchebo 4 or 5 times. We love it and the beach there is amazing! I agree that you will be fine without a car. We use taxis or the bus. They usually have some waiting outside the front of Manchebo. If you don't see one, the front desk will call one and it will be there in a couple of minutes. They are always waiting close by in the area. The only time we rent a car is if we want to go exploring for a day. If you want an awesome day trip, I highly recommend contacting Bully. He gives fantastic island tours. Many of us on the forum use Bully for tours and also for taxi rides. You can read a lot about him here on the forum. His email is firstname.lastname@example.org. For a first time visit, it would probably be easier to take a tour than to try to find things by yourself. The roads aren't very well marked. We leave the driving to Bully.