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Mural and industry museum in San Nicolas

Discover San Nicolas, Aruba

San Nicolas offers iconic beaches and island charm far removed from the glitz and glam of the Palm Beach resorts.

Charlie's Bar & Restaurant was founded on September 18, 1941. Over the years old and new items where carefully collected and now adorn the walls and ceilings of the restaurant

San Nicolas, Aruba’s Sunrise City

Welcome to the Sunrise side of the island! Although San Nicolas, Aruba’s ‘Sunrise City’, is a quiet coastal town of 32.84 km2 located only twelve miles southeast of Oranjestad, it seems a world away. In the heart of Aruba’s second largest city is a quaint promenade on Zeppenfeldstraat, an art murals, some shops, snack shops, restaurants and bars as well as historic buildings of architectural interest. The metal maze of the refinery dominates the landscape and in its heyday when the oil business was thriving, San Nicolas was the place to be. For tourists looking for authentic Caribbean flair and flavour, San Nicolas has plenty to offer: Beautiful beaches and island charm far removed from the glitz and glamour of the Palm Beach resorts and sparkling new shopping centres.

What to do in San Nicolas 

The town is normally a little on the quiet side, but full of unique charm with fun things to do and see. San Nicolas boasts a long history of steel bands, calypso music and exuberant carnivals, first introduced by refinery workers from Trinidad and the English islands. Although the island is Dutch, many San Nicolas residents have British Caribbean heritage and English is still the first language in their homes. Perhaps nothing captures the island mood more than the music of the steel drum, one of the world’s youngest acoustic instruments.

Bars & Restaurants in San Nicolas 

For years, one of the main reasons that visitors have found their way to this end of the island has been to drop in at Charlie's Bar. This bar has been famous since the 1940s, when scuba divers began to hang their underwater discoveries on the walls there. It has become a bit of a museum in the decades since. San Nicolas is part of our tourist destination and the shopping and restaurant areas on the main street have been renovated to reflect the city's history, when seamen around the world took shore leave to enjoy the local hospitality.

As well as cultural and culinary activities, San Nicolas also boasts beautiful beaches. Bring your family to enjoy the calm waters of Baby Beach, explore the hidden gem of Rodger's Beach or go kitesurfing at Boca Grandi!

Join Aruba's Most Colourful Celebration

Aruba 63rd carnival parade celebration

Local musicians create an exceptional ambience in the San Nicolas Grand Carnival Parade.

San Nicolas Aruba isn’t called ‘Sunrise City’ for nothing; this cultural epicentre has so much to offer.

There aren’t many San Nicolas hotels and there are no San Nicolas resorts, but a trip to this side of the island is definitely worth your while.

One of the most popular things to do in San Nicolas has to be visiting Baby Beach. Be sure to explore the surrounding abandoned residential areas within The Colony, it will take you back in time.

Once you’re finished exploring, visit one of the great San Nicolas restaurants. You’ll be blown away by the rich Caribbean flavours and family-style atmosphere.

Featured in San Nicolas

View of the town hall in Oranjestad.

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Oranjestad is a unique blend of old and new that lends a distinctive charm to Aruba’s capital.

Colorful sunset.

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There is perhaps no district on the island with a better symphonic mix of all things Aruba than Noord.

Santa Cruz District

Santa Cruz, Aruba

One of Aruba’s trunk roads, Route 4, runs through the centrally located district of Santa Cruz.

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One of the smaller districts on the island is Paradera, home to three of Aruba’s iconic landscapes.

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RIU Palace Antillas swimming pool in Aruba

Go for an Aruba All-Inclusive Vacation

Stay, play and indulge to your heart’s content at one of Aruba’s beautiful all-inclusive resorts.

Mural of peacock in San Nicolas
Art in Aruba
Rodgers Beach in Aruba.
Beaches & Coves
Romantic cabana dinner on the beach at Elements Restaurant.
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Downtown Oranjestad. Daniel Leo Square was the location of the commander's house - the residence of predecessors to the administrators and governors of the island, built in the first quarter of the 19th century
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View of the Hooiberg from top of the Casibari Rock Formation

Sightseeing Tours in Aruba

The only thing easier than navigating our happy island is letting a local show you around the Aruba they know and love.


Featured Activities

Charlie's Bar & Restaurant was founded on September 18, 1941. Over the years old and new items where carefully collected and now adorn the walls and ceilings of the restaurant

Eating and Drinking

Charlie's Bar, Aruba

San Nicolas now boosts a brand new Museum of Industry (opened September 2016) and a soon to open Community Museum in the newly restored Nicolaas Store in Aruba.


San Nicolas in Aruba is definitely worth a visit

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Exterior of Rent House Aruba Real Estate Company.


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