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Thread: If 1 and ONLY visit to Aruba, what "Must Do?"

  1. #1
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    If 1 and ONLY visit to Aruba, what "Must Do?"

    If you knew you could only go to Aruba ONCE, what is on your "Must Do" list?

    We are a family of 9 people and this may very well be our 1 and ONLY trip to Aruba. My husband & I are mid-50's, with 3 grown children/spouses ages 27-31 and 1 -4 yr old grandson, and our trip is set mid-Dec for 5 nights.

    Our plans thus far include:
    Hotel Reservation at the Hyatt
    Private Snorkel/Sail on Tranquilo 10 am - 2 pm
    Rent 2 Jeeps for 1 day to Explore the Island on our own - not a guided tour
    1 day on beach at Hyatt - rent tube, paddle boards
    Bugaloe - Dinner & Friday night band??
    Barefoot Dinner Reservation

    What do we need to make sure we see on the day we rent Jeeps?
    Must Do???????

  2. #2
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    Andrea J.'s Avatar
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    Sounds like a very busy time!!
    The Hyatt is a lovely property.

    When you rent Jeeps, it is imperative that you ask the rental place for a car seat for the 4 year old.
    I would not recommend off roading with a preschooler and would stick with less bumpy areas....such as the paved road in the Arikok, Baby Beach, Alto Vista chapel and Lighthouse. I would not recommend attempting a visit to the natural pool.

    Also too i am thinking that 4 hours on the Tranquilo might be too much for a 4 year old.
    Often times it is not especially smooth and calm so be prepared with bonine/dramamine.

  3. #3
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    http://www.aruba.com/forum/tags/chil...ctivities.html
    click above link for some Family/kid friendly activities

  4. #4
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    First: Going only ONE time to Aruba will be almost an impossible! As most people get hooked and WANT to return!

    Second: IMO, renting a vehicle for only one day to explore the island is not enough. Aruba is very hot and going on a tour can get exhausting. But more important, IMO: you want to spend a little time at each of your sites to actually take it in, enjoy it, take some or LOTS of pictures!

    My recommendation would be: plan one trip to explore the north side of Aruba like Arashi Beach, California Lighthouse, Alto Vista Chapel, Ostrich Farm, the old Gold Mines, Natural Bridge, Ayo and Casibari Rock Formations where you should climb up on top of the rocks (there are steps) to enjoy the view from the top over the entire island. Then end the day with a nice relaxing dinner at a beach front restaurant to get the best view of the ocean and the breathtaking sunsets!~

    Second trip: I would recommend to drive down to the south side of the island, exploring Savaneta, San Nicolas and spending some time at Baby Beach. On the way back, stop in Oranjestad, there is so much to see: the yacht haven, Seaport Marketplace Mall, Renaissance Mall, Wilhelmina Park with lots of big lizzards hanging out there etc.

    Most important: take lots of sunscreen and lots of water with you!

    Enjoy, explore and relax!

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    Thank you Andrea for the tips. Since our Tranquilo trip will be to the south end of the island "Spanish Lagoon", could the sailing be calmer?

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    If you had to choose between the jeep day to the north side or south side for a day trip - which would you choose?

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    Quote Originally Posted by BeachMom View Post
    If you had to choose between the jeep day to the north side or south side for a day trip - which would you choose?
    The north side. Ending the trip at Oranjestad.

  8. #8
    Senior Member WaltVB's Avatar
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    I know you want to do as much as possible, but please save some time to just relax on the beach or by the pool. Aruba is pretty laid back and things will take time, especially dining with a party of nine. I too recommend the Northern trip, you can see much more in a single day. There are some great places to grab lunch away from the Palm Beach area too. Your choices of Bugaloe and Barefoot (one of my favorites) are great. I would also suggest Scott's Brat's, MooMba and Pelican Nest for reasonably priced meals on the beach. And just between you and me, I think this will not be your "one and only trip", I'm sure after this trip you will want to return again and again.

  9. #9
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    We rent a jeep for 1 day last trip. It was a great day we started at lighthouse and drove the north shore. We were able to see all the sights that we wanted and then ended up in town at pizza and more for a quick bite and did some shopping. The North shore was amazing to experience and was fun driving on beach with family we had a blast.

  10. #10
    Senior Member Traceyd14's Avatar
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    To me it's the little things...eat some fresh seafood, enjoy the color or the sky and the water, and watch a sunset. Those are my favorite things about Aruba. Everything else is just a bonus. Take pictures of the views of the water crashing into the cliffs on the wild side, enjoy the friendliness of the people you meet. You cant go wrong with picking one beach over another, or one scenic view over another. My thought is just take it all in. Get pictures when you can, but don't forget to look up and enjoy it while you are in the moment.
    Not sure when, but we will be back

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