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Thread: advice needed...traveling with teens next winter

  1. #1
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
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    Question advice needed...traveling with teens next winter

    Dear Aruba.com Community,

    I have been researching a vacation for next February break. Hours and hours of research. Coming from the COLD Northeast, warm sun and warm, crystal clear water for swimming are priority. Searched many places in Caribbean and we are now boiling it down to Aruba (b/c of water and air temps in Feb). But where? We have 2 teen daughters coming (by then they will be 15 and 18) and want activities for them (had looked at more lush islands for things like zip lining or cave exploring). Swimming and beach is great but not for 7 full days without some other adventures or activities. Oldest daughter wants to snorkel and have adventures, younger likes shopping / and tanning.
    We do not golf nor gamble. As the mom who spends my life thinking about feeding people 24/7, I am partial to an AI (never done one) but we also are not typical Americans when it comes to food (in fact, my husband is French and we are a bit "foodies"...girls and I are pescatarians, i.e. no meat or poultry but fish, yes), so burgers and hotdogs, chicken bbq, etc, not our thing.
    If we don't do AI am worried we'll spend our time trying to decide where to eat and it could get expensive and stressful. But AI's don't get the best reviews for good, healthy, fresh food.
    Priority is a GREAT beach, great water for swimming. Bucuti looks great, but one daughter will only be 15. Hard to search because "family friendly" means to us many young children underfoot and we're past that stage and would like fun but also calm. But also not looking for college party crowd or mob scene.
    We would also love a one or two bedroom suite or adjoining rooms, steps to the beach.
    Have looked at Divi and Tamarjin and read many reviews but both look worn down and a bit tacky. Also, weird how the top floor balconies have zero privacy. That's just awkward. But location looks ideal plus benefit of access to both properties. Also checking out Amsterdam Manor...
    Would LOVE some help with this. My head is spinning with information.
    Any help would be GREATLY appreciated!!

  2. #2
    Senior Member cindyo's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Reniassance Island & Surf Club Lazy River
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    5,699
    Check out marriott surf club
    Look at Redweek.com for rentals
    Lazy river
    Walk to most fish type resturants
    Hadicurai comes to mind fish all u can eat
    Minutes to beach, get palapas in advance

    Also Rennaissance Ocean suites
    Cheaper
    Avail on red week
    Private island

  3. #3
    Aruba since 1979
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    Andrea J.'s Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2007
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    29,945
    welcome to the aruba.com community forum.

    i am not sure that an ALL INCLUSIVE is the way to go for your family's needs.
    I would recommend renting a 2 bedroom timeshare.
    Costa Linda, LaCabana, Marriott Ocean or Surf Clubs, LaQUinta, Paradise Beach Villas, Casa DEl Mar are some that come to mind.

    Check this site (timeshare section) to see what is available and also check Redweek.com as Cindyp recommended.

    I think some or most all inclusives may not have enough fish on their menus to give you much variety.

    Aruba has many great seafood offerings at most of their restaurants.


    I encourage you to read the section of ACTIVITIES/SPORTS and CULINARY.

    Post some questions or concerns in those categories too.

    The Tamarijn and Divi AI are not tacky and are laid back lovely resorts. Certainly not 5 star elaborate, but perfect for an all inclusive beach vacation.

    The Bucuti will not allow children, also the Renaissance Marina Tower, no children.

    Quite possibly the Renaissance Ocean Suites (as CindyO suggested) and signing on to their all inclusive. They have the Aquarius which has an excellent seafood buffet which is included.

    Amsterdam Manor may also be just the ticket. Unsure if they offer an all inclusive. It is a very quiet resort with maybe not enough "activity" for your 2 teens.

    You have got lots of time to decide and we are here to help.

    Also too, use the SEARCH feature on the left menu. click search and enter in a few words like teen activities, or inexpensive dining. you will get many hits.


    QUOTE=AnneMarie16;240143]Dear Aruba.com Community,

    I have been researching a vacation for next February break. Hours and hours of research. Coming from the COLD Northeast, warm sun and warm, crystal clear water for swimming are priority. Searched many places in Caribbean and we are now boiling it down to Aruba (b/c of water and air temps in Feb). But where? We have 2 teen daughters coming (by then they will be 15 and 18) and want activities for them (had looked at more lush islands for things like zip lining or cave exploring). Swimming and beach is great but not for 7 full days without some other adventures or activities. Oldest daughter wants to snorkel and have adventures, younger likes shopping / and tanning.
    We do not golf nor gamble. As the mom who spends my life thinking about feeding people 24/7, I am partial to an AI (never done one) but we also are not typical Americans when it comes to food (in fact, my husband is French and we are a bit "foodies"...girls and I are pescatarians, i.e. no meat or poultry but fish, yes), so burgers and hotdogs, chicken bbq, etc, not our thing.
    If we don't do AI am worried we'll spend our time trying to decide where to eat and it could get expensive and stressful. But AI's don't get the best reviews for good, healthy, fresh food.
    Priority is a GREAT beach, great water for swimming. Bucuti looks great, but one daughter will only be 15. Hard to search because "family friendly" means to us many young children underfoot and we're past that stage and would like fun but also calm. But also not looking for college party crowd or mob scene.
    We would also love a one or two bedroom suite or adjoining rooms, steps to the beach.
    Have looked at Divi and Tamarjin and read many reviews but both look worn down and a bit tacky. Also, weird how the top floor balconies have zero privacy. That's just awkward. But location looks ideal plus benefit of access to both properties. Also checking out Amsterdam Manor...
    Would LOVE some help with this. My head is spinning with information.
    Any help would be GREATLY appreciated!![/QUOTE]

  4. #4
    Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Posts
    48
    We stayed at Renaissance Ocean Suites last year and we travelled with another family who had a 14 year old girl, plus there were 2 ten year olds. The private island was everybody's favorite. It's included when you stay at the hotel. It has the most gorgeous private, sheltered beach. There were enough other kids around for the teen to meet. Adjacent to the hotel were several outstanding restaurants. (We come from a resort island where the restaurants and chefs are "Five Star" so we have pretty high standards and we were not disappointed.)

    That said, this year we'll be staying at the Marriott Ocean Suites because we need a full kitchen. The beach and surrounding area offer a lot for the kids. If they want, there's something different to do every day. Or not. Everybody can just chill by the beach or pool. The wonderful thing about Aruba is that the weather is gauranteed great. We got tired of going to other islands and having dicey weather. Once we disocered Aruba, we never looked back.

  5. #5
    Senior Member arubabob's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    Eagle Beach, Baby Beach, Arashi Beach Tierra Del Sol golf course
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    1,202
    Most restaurants on the island serve fresh seafood. Getting around on the island is safe and easy. We rent a car while there and use it to go to dinner every night and do some shopping. Also use it to tour the island and go snorkeling at Arashi beach and Baby beach. We have rented 2 bedroom timeshares from owners at Costa Linda and Playa Linda. Renaisance has only 1 bedroom units and would be small for 4. If you go to the web sites of Costa Linda and Playa Linda you will find an owners bulletin board that lists units for rent. 7 days goes by fast on Aruba. The teens wont be bored if they like to snorkel and tan.

  6. #6
    Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Posts
    48
    Ooops. I meant we're staying at "Marriott Surf Club" this year, not Marriott Ocean Suites. From what I've heard, there are lots of fun things for kids to do like ping pong, Lazy River pool, "Den" club for teens staying there.

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