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Aruba Nights Island Guide
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  1. #1
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    How does Aruba compare to other islands in the Caribbean?

    Hi all,

    We are flying out on the 21st July from the UK for our 1st visit to Aruba. My question (yet another one) is how does it compare to other islands in the Caribbean. I know i wont be dissapointed but have heard a few people say would never go back (as well as other bad comments) as opposed to really nice place put always go somewhere different 2nd time around etc.

    I am aware that this may be a touchy subject but would like an honest opinion as i have never been to other parts of the Caribbean before, enquiring minds and all that!

    Thanks
    Leanne

    Next Aruba trip in

  2. #2
    Junior Member
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    May 2008
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    hiya! Aruba has a lot of modern day amenities, both European and American, so you should feel right at home. I have only been to a couple other islands and i thought aruba has more options for shopping, dining and entertainment. i am going to be bias here, (seeing as that is where I was born) but, to me, the beaches are far prettier! hope that helps :-) have a great vacation!

  3. #3
    Aruba since 1979
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    Andrea J.'s Avatar
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    this is only my opinon and others i am sure will have comments too.

    we have been to
    St Maarten= found it congested, lovely beaches both dutch and french side, found the citizens less than friendly. lovely/pretty island.

    Martinique= scary. lovely beaches, rude scary residents where we toured, cheap pricing, did i say scary?
    St. Thomas= very congested, very crowded, beaches nice, did not feel real safe at night being out and around. again, lovely island.

    Bahamas= found it dirty, residents not friendly, we had crummy weather...lots of rain, good prices and good shopping .

    Bermuda= found it too expensive and boring. beaches pretty

    Cancun= disgustingly congested, residents rude, beaches lovely, pricing cheap.

    Cozumel= same as Cancun but with more sites to see (Mayan ruiins) dirty

    Bonaire= nice, somewhat friendly residents, pricing comparable to Aruba, no real great stretches of beaches, lousy shopping, small choices of restaurants awesome scuba and snorkeling

    Curacao= like Bonaire and Aruba but very congested and not so friendly residents.

    Dominican Republic= I was at a resort CasaDel Campo and it was magnificent. We did not leave the resort as the traveling around was unsafe.

    Barbados= horrible, crime, filth but we were there only 12 hrs from a cruise ship.

    Grand Cayman= expensive, great scuba and snorkeling, nothing to do at night, awesome beaches.

    Aruba= has all of the positives of the above mentioned islands including GREAT weather most of the time.

    Needless to say Aruba is #1 for us.
    I'd probably say Bonaire would be #2

    andrea
    .

    Quote Originally Posted by LeanneG View Post
    Hi all,

    We are flying out on the 21st July from the UK for our 1st visit to Aruba. My question (yet another one) is how does it compare to other islands in the Caribbean. I know i wont be dissapointed but have heard a few people say would never go back (as well as other bad comments) as opposed to really nice place put always go somewhere different 2nd time around etc.

    I am aware that this may be a touchy subject but would like an honest opinion as i have never been to other parts of the Caribbean before, enquiring minds and all that!

    Thanks
    Last edited by Andrea J.; 06-02-2008 at 02:31 PM. Reason: forgot martinique

  4. #4
    Junior Member
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    Wow, thanks Andrea, you certainly have eased any doubts. I am really glad we opted for Aruba. Initially we decided on Barbados but changed our minds because of the rain during July/Aug, that's when we stumbled across Aruba.
    Leanne

    Next Aruba trip in

  5. #5
    Senior Member Eagle Beach Boy's Avatar
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    Jun 2007
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    Eagle Beach
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    We have been fortunate to have visited many other islands as well as both coasts of Mexico.

    ARUBA is the only place we have returned to. 15 times.
    Eagle Beach Boy
    Ontario, Canada




  6. #6
    Senior Member DANNYO's Avatar
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    We have been to other islands and my wife just doesn't feel safe,on Aruba she goes out by herself and walks by herself and feels safe.Have been going to Aruba for 12years and don't want to go anywhere else.You will love Aruba.The only thing you should remember it is not a tropical island.ENJOY

  7. #7
    Senior Member Arubalisa's Avatar
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    Any Aruba beach...
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    Going to steal most of Andreas islands for my list. For full disclosure most of these visits have been made aboard cruise ships. Began crusing long before discovering and falling in love with Aruba.

    St Maarten= beautiful island with great beaches
    Martinique= did not like it, would not go back, locals extremely rude to the point of being nasty, beautiful rainforest, then again, haven't met one of those which I did not like
    St.Thomas= CROWDED, expect traffic most everywhere. Beaches are nice. I have a friend with parents living there. They do NOT go out at night because crime is rampant.
    Bahama= Paradise Island, unless you are rich enough to stay at the Ocean Club, overdeveloped. Other resorts are high priced as well. Dining is expensive. Like Andrea said weather can be a real worry. Been there for the 5 most picturesque days in my lifetime with nothing but crystal clear water, clear blue skies and comfortable temperatures as well as two times where it was not only too cold to sit on the beach, it rained and the ocean was so rough the beach was CLOSED.
    Bermuda= My grandparents paid for the trip a zillion years ago, from what I remember, stuffy, expensive with nice beaches. Terrific golf.
    Cancun= never been, but have not met a single non- 20 something adult who has actually liked the place
    Cozumel= the place to go if you are a diver. Some of my favorite dives were there. Beaches very underwhelming and not much else.
    Bonaire= on our "to do" list, reputation preceeds itself for the best spot in the Caribbean for snorkeling and diving.
    Curacao= I LOVED Curacao, not as Americanized as Aruba. Great diving and snorkeling but not quite as good as Bonaire from what I understand. Either way better than diving/snorkeling Aruba. Some fabulous beaches but on more desolate parts of the island. Plan on driving. The resorts I've investigated, most beaches are man-made. The new Renaissance is bringing in it's sand from, you guessed it , Aruba.
    Barbados= I have been there 3 times on cruises on love the beaches on the western side of the island. Not sure about their crime, but would believe Andrea. If their weather was as good as Aruba's would definitely give it a shot. You made the right decision not going there during the summer.
    Grand Cayman= ditto everything Andrea said, go there on a cruise for the day and it is affordable
    St. Lucia- very picturesque and tropical. Wouldn't go for a beach vaccation though, that part just did not appeal to me.
    Jamaica- Been to Ocho Rios a couple of times. Inexpensive land vacation but you cannot leave your resort at night, diving is terrible as the reefs are trampled and fished out and beaches are so, so. Spend a day touring and a required stop at the falls and you will get a picture of a tropical island. People are nice until they begin their Ganga "pitch".
    Puerto Rico- last visit was told not to leave the resort at night. Right there that is a turn off for me. Beautiful rainforest and some gorgeous beaches.
    Tortola- only my list of places to return to. People very friendly and just an overall beautiful tropical island with some lovely beaches. If I had a yacht it would be parked there permanently.
    Grenada- on my list of places to return to. People as friendly as the Arubans (and they are much, much poorer), a lush tropical island and beautiful beaches.

    Aruba
    POSTIVES
    guaranteed good weather, excellent restaurants, the best beaches, friendly Arubans
    NEGATIVES
    arrid & desert like and windy

    IMO, the negatives are the reasons people cite for not returning to Aruba. Some also complain there is nothing to do on the island, but imo, it is there you just have to know where to look for it. http://www.aruba.com/whattodo/

    1. Spend an entire day hiking Arikok National Park,
    2. a day driving around the northern half of the island with plenty of photo stops
    3. and another day around the southern half with a stop for snorkeling and lunches and you have an entire 3 days knocked off your vacation.
    4. Another full day on a snorkel excursion off of a boat knocks out the 4th day...well you get the idea.
    Similar to EBB, we are now returning to Aruba for trip #17. We will be going to Aruba until we can no longer afford to do so or there is an airline which flies direct to Grenada from Atlanta without our losing 2 nights of our vacation overnighting in Puerto Rico.

  8. #8
    Senior Member
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    Under a hut, walking Eagle Beach, lunch on the beach, Amstel Bright Beer on the beach, coffee in the morning on the beach, taking a dip in the sea,
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    Thumbs up

    >>> "but have heard a few people say would never go back"
    ---- Did they say way?? Now Aruba is a desert type island so won't be green like most other islands down that way. But if looking for a great beach and great food(unless going AI) don't think other islands can compare. Bermuda has lots of history and is beautiful but most resorts there do not have a great beach like Aruba.
    >>> "on Aruba she goes out by herself and walks by herself and feels safe."
    ----Ditto.
    Last edited by TomFrederick; 06-02-2008 at 05:10 PM.

  9. #9
    Junior Member
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    Bugaloe especially at sunset!
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    Hey i have been to many of the islands others have mentioned and there is something about Aruba that has brought me back. I have been three times this year alone! There is a great friendly atmosphere and you could swear you were at home. You have made a great choice enjoy your holiday!

  10. #10
    Senior Member rob o's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Arubalisa View Post
    Going Aruba
    POSTIVES
    guaranteed good weather, excellent restaurants, the best beaches, friendly Arubans
    NEGATIVES
    arrid & desert like and windy

    IMO, the negatives are the reasons people cite for not returning to Aruba. Some also complain there is nothing to do on the island, but imo, it is there you just have to know where to look for it.

    Desert-like a negative? That's one of the main reasons I visited aruba in the first place. I hate rain...I love not watching forecasts while on vacation. Dry, dry, dry. Love it!

    As for nothing to do? What's wrong with that? Relax, sit back, enjoy the food, the weather, friends and family. Sightseeing? Ahhh, too much work!
    ........with CindyO and daughters
    Annual Aruba visits since 1997....September 2014 and New Year 2015 are next



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