My wife and I have visited the island 8 times and we find the experience wonderful each time. The last 3 visits have included a morning climb of Mt. Haystack (Hooliberg) via the north face stairs. It is a deceivingly long trek but worth the effort once you reach the summit.
On our visit this past October, we encountered an island local who was repeatedly jogging to the summit and returning to the base. On one of his passes, we asked what he was doing. Apparently he is a triathelete in training and he was building up his stamina by repeating the climb 5 consecutive times. Yikes!! Once is enough for us but we wish him well in his pursuit of island pride.
If you have not attempted the climb, wear sneakers and bring water. The views are spectacular.
1. Renaissance private island 2. Sunsets from our room 3. Baby beach 4. Alto Vista Chapel 5. Hiking Hooiberg 6. lighthouse and cunucu exploring 7. all the restaurants 8. Crystal and Seaport casinos 9. charlie's Bar 10. Downtown Orangestad.
I agree that the Hooiberg climb is a must! Word to the wise, do not leave anything visible in your car. We had our windows smashed and they grabbed a small plastic bag with a Cincinnati Bengals t-shirt in it. Guess we showed them! That grab was worth LESS than nothing!