Just returned from a week in Aruba. Who knew when I bought a plane ticket, that I would be leaving the worst winter on record in Philadelphia! My third year in a rowing visiting Aruba and it feels like home. Flew US Air direct, no glitches or delays. Moved swiftly through customs to luggage to car rental. Just to share a few items with future visitors. Car rentals for the most part are not like the US. These cars are heavily beat with the road (and off-road) conditions. Something is always not working (radio, window) but as long as the tires and air conditioning are good, I consider it a win!
Rented a private condo through Prima Casa (near windmill) and for the third time had a wonderful private residence and a great experience with Erika. I enjoy being in a neighborhood in a home with a kitchen and removed from the resort areas.
A few pleasant restaurant surprises - Pam Pam (so affordable and delicious, just make sure to get some bug spray from the bartender!), Cafe Capri (great lunch), Moomba Beach Bar (close accessible parking and great sunset spot).
New discovered beach location - Mangel Halto (great snorkeling)
Best American Breakfast - Salt and Pepper (again, easy parking)
Strangest find - Abandoned water park (70's?) at base of Hooiberg
Best Pancakes (dutch style) - Linda's pancakes
Advice to first-time adventurers - don't fear to go off the main roads. I enjoy driving through neighborhoods and seeing the diversity of the homes. Never have I felt unsafe! Stop at the small bars and snack shacks for a cold drink and a conversation with a local. It makes the trip so much more memorable.
The beach and the swim up bar in the pool. Senior Frogs, The winning at the casino, Hard Rock Cafe, Pool Bingo
JMonte...You are absolutely going to love love Aruba. We are not going back until next year and I already have my countdown calendar going. I love the weather and the people are so nice and the relaxation is amazing...