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Thread: Wonderful Trip from 11/10-11/20

  1. #1
    Jax
    Jax is offline
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    Thumbs up Wonderful Trip from 11/10-11/20

    I too shall say that the weather was not the greatest. It still beats the snow and cold that I left and then returned to. My daughter and I arrived on the 10th from Portland, OR. The flights were uneventful, just a bit long.

    We took the De Palm bus to the Tam, got settled in and waited for my parents to arrive. They were 2 hours late after Delta had some issues with the plane and had to make an emergency landing in Ft. Lauderdale after leaving Atlanta. (BTW they had mechanical issues on 3 of the 4 legs of the trips from Phoenix to Aruba and back)

    When I was at the Tam last year at the same time, the beaches were huge and beautiful. This year it was rocks starting out by the pool all the way down the length of the hotel in both directions. Egads! Over the course of the 10 days we were there, we saw a massive transformation of the beaches by the Tam. By the time we left on the 20th there were several areas of sandy beach including by the pool up to the Divi, in front of 1800, 1900 and still gaining on the higher buildings. The sandy beach area grew by FEET! Probably the biggest change that I noted on the beaches was up past the Divi AI by the Costa Linda (I think). Last year I was able to walk all the way up through Eagle Beach up to the high rise section. This year the latter half of the Divi on up was rocks. I believe that there was possibly a foot and a half section of "beach". I just stood there with my mouth hanging on the ground until I got smacked with some spray by the waves crashing around. This area had not recovered by the time I left.

    My daughter had never had a chance to swim in the ocean before (she is 7). We had much fun playing in the ocean, building sand castles and singing in the rain. She spent some time in the Kids Club which was a blast--great crew from the Tam. We were bummed that the trip to the butterfly farm was canceled due to rain (torrential downpours really) so we just hung out in the ocean instead--if you're going to be wet, might as well be really wet.

    A few of the highlights included our trip with Cerry on the 13th--read more in the getting around section under Cerry. The man is truly a wealth of knowledge. We loved the trip on board the Mi Dushi on the18th (the weather was great this day). The crew consisted of JC, Carlos, Johan and Elisabeth. They were fantastic--especially with my daughter. We did the snorkeling sunset trip. My daughter did pretty well but did get freaked out a couple of times--come to find out later that it was due to the sunken ships--she thought that there were still people on board them and was scared--makes sense in a 7 year old's mind--I should have seen that one coming. A very entertaining crew and I highly recommend a trip out with them on their beautiful old boat! The De Palm pier (where you leave for the trip on the Mi Dushi) took a bashing the week before and some of it was missing on the far end.

    As we were staying at the Tam, we ate all of our meals between the two resorts (also at the Divi AI). Let's discuss the restaurants for a moment. The buffet was always great with a large variety, we especially loved all the fresh fruits each day. For dinner we ate at the Red Parrot 3 times. Always had great food, the service as long as we sat outside was phenomenal but the day we sat indoors the service was mediocre and that is being kind. We ate at the Palm Grill one night which was good but after seeing 2 kids get burned, we decided to not tempt fate and didn't eat there again. We ate at the Paparazzi one night. The appetizers were fantastic, the meal was ok and the service was not good. The night at the Ginger was not good. The food was somewhere between bad and disgusting. My daughter, my mother and I only ate about 3 bites of our food (thank goodness we had an early sitting and could still go eat at the buffet). The service was good. I truly don't have a clue why it is so hard to get a reservation there. I have yet to read a good review on this restaurant. The pizza per tutti was great for snacks and such.

    The service was great pretty much everywhere except the crabby old lady at the bar. After 3 days of her we just learned to go to whatever bar she was not at. We were even able to get the lady at the towel exchange to laugh this time. Security was great when my daughter got her first bee sting there (sorry to anyone who was on the island and could hear my daughter scream bloody murder). We had a fantastic lady that cleaned our room. She kept putting out extra bathmats at the sliding doors so we wouldn't slip. We enjoyed many of the show that were put on at the Tam. My daughter really enjoyed the Barracudas (young team of synchronized swimmers).

    Well, aren't I long-winded today--almost done.

    Another worthy note is on the mosquitoes. These buggers are nasty here! We would spray morning and evening and we still all got bit. The sneaky mosquitoes on this island are very resourceful. Amongst the four of us, we had bites on our necks, between our toes, on ear lobes, cheeks, knees and arches of our feet not to even mention the normal arms, legs and .....................Remember this was with spraying OFF with Deet. I am sure it would have been so much worse without the spray. We usually ended up with 3 or 4 bites a day each--just in awkward places. We went through 4 cans in the 10 days. I never saw the OFF displays in the grocery stores with any product on it.

    Based on the recommendations in this forum, we rented a cell phone from Trees at Discount Cell. She was great to deal with. The whole process was easy and convenient not to mention very reasonably priced. There is free wifi at Starbucks not to mention that just like in the US, it is a smoke free environment in Aruba.

    The morning we left was rainy. I was actually quite happy with that; otherwise it would have been so hard to leave on a sunny day after all of the rain. All in all we had a great trip. There is not a thing in the world you can do about the weather so go and enjoy no matter what!! I can't wait for next year!

  2. #2
    Senior Member Arubalisa's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jax View Post
    I too shall say that the weather was not the greatest. It still beats the snow and cold that I left and then returned to. My daughter and I arrived on the 10th from Portland, OR. The flights were uneventful, just a bit long.
    Great attitude for a vacation, when you are handed lemons, make lemonade. Your dd is fortunate to have an optimistic parent! Rain ALWAYS beats snow, unless you are a skier

    When I was at the Tam last year at the same time, the beaches were huge and beautiful. This year it was rocks starting out by the pool all the way down the length of the hotel in both directions. Egads! Over the course of the 10 days we were there, we saw a massive transformation of the beaches by the Tam. By the time we left on the 20th there were several areas of sandy beach including by the pool up to the Divi, in front of 1800, 1900 and still gaining on the higher buildings. The sandy beach area grew by FEET!
    Do you have any photos you could post? I love to see the changes Mother nature brings to the beaches at the Tamarijn. Just like a good mystery novel, you never know how it is going to play out.

    My daughter had never had a chance to swim in the ocean before (she is 7). We had much fun playing in the ocean, building sand castles and singing in the rain.
    AMEN!

    She spent some time in the Kids Club which was a blast--great crew from the Tam.
    Our dd always looked forward to the kids club at the Tam. She is too old for the kids club now, but the staff has always been wonderful with the kids. I hope Igmar was keeping the adults entertained at the pool area as well.

    We did the snorkeling sunset trip. My daughter did pretty well but did get freaked out a couple of times--come to find out later that it was due to the sunken ships--she thought that there were still people on board them and was scared--makes sense in a 7 year old's mind--I should have seen that one coming.
    Poor thing. Good point though, I would have never thought of that either.

    As we were staying at the Tam, we ate all of our meals between the two resorts (also at the Divi AI). Let's discuss the restaurants for a moment.
    In four stays at the Tam we have had pretty much the same experiences. Even including service indoors at the Red Parrot. The only exception there, when we were a family 13, kind of difficult to ignore or forget. Still trying to figure out the attraction of the Grill Restaurant. We do it for the kids, once, and once only per trip. Hot and greasy smelling. Ginger is always hit or miss.

    We were even able to get the lady at the towel exchange to laugh this time.
    You get a GOLD star for that one!!! Let us know the secret!

    Well, aren't I long-winded today--almost done.
    Thanks for sharing and taking the time to write the review. Again, would love to see some photos of the beach.

    The morning we left was rainy. I was actually quite happy with that; otherwise it would have been so hard to leave on a sunny day after all of the rain. All in all we had a great trip. There is not a thing in the world you can do about the weather so go and enjoy no matter what!! I can't wait for next year!
    Great attitude = great vacation and again you set a great example for your dd.

  3. #3
    Senior Member aruba here I come's Avatar
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    why is there so many bugs lately? Aruba is known for not alot of bugs.
    ______________

  4. #4
    Aruba since 1979
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    Andrea J.'s Avatar
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    lots of rain ='s lots of mosquitos :-(

    hopefully with the island drying out, things will get better.

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