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Aruba's Top Music Festivals & Cultural Events for 2018

Those who have been to Aruba before, know that there’s never a lack of things to do.

I can’t imagine anyone growing bored of lounging on our breathtaking beaches, but just in case you’re ready for something different, we have an abundant number of special events sprinkled throughout the year for locals and visitors to enjoy!

In this blog post, I’ll give you the rundown of Aruba’s most highly anticipated happenings in 2018, but for a comprehensive overview of all major events this year, be sure to also check out the official 2018 Aruba events calendar.

January

Carnival, the biggest party in Aruba starts in January. What better way to kick of the new year than with bright colorful parades, festive musical competitions, sequins, and rhinestones! Some carnival season highlights include the Lighting Parade where participants decorate their costumes with little lights and dance the night away and the Jouvert Morning Pajama Party, where participants gather in San Nicolas before the sun comes up for an unforgettable celebration.

February

Carnival festivities go on into February. Usually the season’s grand finale takes place during this month, so be sure to book your travels accordingly! The Grand Parades in both San Nicolas and Oranjestad are some of the most festive and colorful celebrations you’ll ever experience.

National Flag and Anthem Day Celebration in Aruba

March

During the month of March, we celebrate Aruban history. March 18, is our National Flag and Anthem Day. On this day show appreciation for our flag, anthem, Aruba culture, and our unique Status Aparte position within the Dutch Kingdom. The celebration usually goes hand in hand with fun activities all over the island like museum tours, folkloric dance performances and great traditionally Aruban food!

April

On April 27th, we celebrate King’s Day. On this day we celebrate our King Willem-Alexander. Dress code is a vibrant orange, the National color of the Netherlands. The holiday is celebrated with traditionally Dutch and Aruban treats and the most charming flea markets.

April is also the month where the Eat Local Food Truck Festival takes place. If you haven’t had the pleasure of attending one of these flavorful weekends, you’re missing out. Arubans know good food! Whether it’s fine dining or a good burger, you will be coming back for more.

Multi-award winner and worldwide phenomenon Usher performing at the Soul Beach Music Festival in Aruba.

May

This Memorial Day weekend, the 18th (!) edition of the ever popular Soul Beach Music Festival will be held. One of the most star studded musical events in the Caribbean. The 2018 edition will feature talents like Alicia Keys, Maxwell and Marlon Wayans! Yes, Marlon Wayans. Soul Beach is not just an Aruba music festival, it also features top of the line comedy shows, and outstanding beach- and after parties. You are bound to have a great time and make some friends along the way. There’s a reason why Soul Beach goers come back every year. Join the fun from May 23 to May 29.

Colombian singer Maluma performing at Aruba Summer Music Festival 2017

June

Hooray! We’ve reached this year’s halfway mark. The perfect time to replenish our strengths for the rest of the year, don’t you agree? Aruba has got you covered. June is the official Aloe Wellness Month. The very best vacation spots in the Caribbean will provide you with specially tailored Aruba vacation packages geared towards wellness, relaxation and rejuvenation.

In Aruba, live music is something we can’t live without. The urge to constantly dance and celebrate is an integral part of culture in Aruba. The Aruba Summer Music Festival is back this year! The festival takes place from June 29th to July 1st. Musical stars Ozuna, Nacho, Victor Manuelle, Fonseca, and Kes, are among the talents that will be giving their concerts in Aruba! Click here for the complete lineup!

Besides Music Festivals in Aruba, the community is also very fond of sporting events, especially in June as this falls right in line with our wellness month. The first edition of the KLM International Marathon is taking place. The AIMS/ IAAF certified race will be held on June 3rd this year.

The largest amateur windsurfing and kite boarding competition in the world takes place every year in Aruba.   Hundreds of competitors vie for medals in various categories.  While most of the kite boarding competitions take place on the southern end of the island at Boca Grandi, the majority of the events take place at Fisherman’s Huts, just past The Ritz-Carlton, Aruba.  Hi-Winds is a great spectator event as well, with a full agenda of beach parties, fashion shows, and concerts to enjoy.

July

Speaking of sports, one of the most highly anticipated sporting events is held in July! The 31st Annual Aruba HI-Winds will be taking place from July 3rd to July 9th, The biggest amateur wind- and kitesurfing event in the Caribbean!

August

For all the Lovebirds out there, August is the perfect month to visit the island. On August 22, Aruba will once again be hosting “Aruba I Do”. The biggest vow renewal ceremony in the Caribbean. Surprise your better half with a trip to Aruba, and take them to the vow renewal ceremony on the most beautiful and romantic setting of Eagle Beach.

Graffmapping works as a new audiovisual language that fuses videomapping and the passion for graffiti. New technologies gives the possibility to take these two languages beyond the predetermined space spectrum and use them to interact with all the elements that define the modern city.

Richard Santana born in Gran Canaria knows all about the beauty and rareness of life on an island, colors, birds, endangered species, harmony.

This incredible artist chooses the biggest building of them all, Aruba’s Art & Crafts heaven Cosecha.

Inspired by the flamingo’s at the Renaissance Island he merges several elements of color and combines it with mapping, coming alive during the Aruba Art Fair with its own music.The youth of San Nicolas enjoyed this artist that gave them workshops on a daily basis.
Dame is looking over her city of Arts.

September

During this month, the Aruba Art Scene is celebrated! Head over to San Nicolas (also known as Sunrise City), and enjoy the Aruba Art Fair, a 3-day event featuring illustration, sculpting and even culinary contests! Those who have been to Aruba know that our community is especially appreciative of the culinary arts. Seriously, just check out what October has in store.

Food presentation at the Old Fisherman Restaurant.

October

In October we celebrate Eat Local Restaurant Month. During the entire month of October, you can visit some of the Caribbean’s best restaurants and enjoy their local 2-course lunch and 3-course dinner menus for a great discounted price. If you consider yourself a foodie, you need to book your trip to paradise for this fall.

People playing Beach tennis at Aruba International Beach Tennis Tournament

November

The Aruba International Beach Tennis Tournament is a huge success every year. Athletes from around the world gather on our One happy island to enter this prestigious tournament. Eagle Beach is the perfect venue to host the premier beach tennis tournament in the Caribbean.

Many of our most popular events are hosted on beaches and near coves, while there are strict guidelines in place to leave our beaches clean after the festivities have taken place, we should all go the extra mile to maintain these natural wonders! November is also the month when the AHATA Annual Coastal Cleanup is held. This year, it is scheduled for November 3rd. Grab some gloves, it feels great to give back!

December

Each culture has its own distinctive way of celebrating the holidays. The same is true for Aruba. If you’re around during the December month, be sure to partake in some of our holiday traditions. On December 27, the annual Dande Festival is held. More than 50 performers present their version of the traditional Dande song that is supposed to bestow blessings, success and happiness for the coming year upon the audience. Each year, a winning performer is chosen.

Other Things to Do in Aruba

If you happen to miss any of the event on this list, don’t worry! There are still a bunch of fun, exciting or relaxing ways to spend your Aruba vacation. Whether you’re into adventurous expeditions, or you’d much rather sip fresh coconut juice in a hammock in the shade, Aruba is the place to be.

View of the Boca Catalina Beach in Aruba

Beaches

Beach hopping is an absolute treat! Our island has a very diverse selection of beaches, there’s a beach for every type of vacationer. 

You can choose to lounge on award-winning Eagle Beach, go on a snorkeling trip at Boca Catalina, hop on a jet ski and race through the waters of Palm Beach, or do all of the above! One of Aruba’s many strengths is that it’s such a small island, many beaches are within minutes of each other!

Here are some great beaches you can’t miss on your next trip

Jolly Pirates water activity in Aruba.

Waterfun

While you’re at the beach, why not have some fun on the water? All your favorite water activities can be enjoyed here.

Stroll along the beaches to find watersports kiosks, bring your own gear, or reserve activities in advance. Check out these companies for more information.

Tour guide combining history with pure entertainment to hold the attention and interest of his audience.

Land Activities     

Aruba may be small, but there is no lack of scenic areas to explore. One of the easiest ways to do this, is by going on an island tour. Knowledgeable guides will tell you a little bit about the history of each area. Tours come in all shapes and sizes, you can travel by bus, jeep, on foot, even on horseback! Here are some companies you can start planning your tour with:

After such an exciting adventure, it’s only natural that you would like some “me-time” to unwind. What better way to replenish your energy than a good spa day! Aruba has a nice selection of spas to choose from. These are just a few examples:

Food presentation at Café the Plaza located at Renaissance Marketplace.

Restaurants

s a self-proclaimed foodie living Aruba, I couldn’t be happier with the very wide selection of eateries on the island (over 250!). Even if you can’t make it to the Food Truck Festival or the Eat Local Restaurant Month, you can rest assured that your culinary experiences here will be top notch!

The selection of cuisine types offered on the island is almost as culturally diverse as the Aruban people themselves. Not only do we have restaurants that serve amazing international food (Italian, Chinese, Mexican, Dutch, Peruvian, Colombian, you name it!), we also have a nice selection serving delicious Aruban dishes.

Some great eateries are listed below:

Seaport Casino near Renaissance Marketplace in Aruba

Nightlife

It is definitely recommended to roam the Palm Beach area when the sun has gone down. Aruba nightlife is known for its festive ambiance and colorful activities. Visit The Village for some of the most popular night clubs or roam from hotel to hotel to try your luck at the many casinos.

Visit these casinos, you might go home a winner:

Before heading over to the Palm Beach area, don’t forget to attend the Bon Bini Festival held on Tuesday evenings at 6:30pm. The weekly folkloric music and dance event is the perfect introduction to the warmth and hospitality of the Aruban community.

Mainstreet in Oranjestad Aruba

Shopping

There are some excellent shopping areas you should visit on your trip. From jewelry to local crafts you can find it all here. Try taking the trolley through downtown Oranjestad, it’s free and it will take you to the main shopping areas!

The Palm Beach area also has two malls that are definitely worth a visit, especially for fans of fashion and beauty. Palm Beach Plaza Mall and Paseo Herencia Mall are right next to each other. Now that’s what I call convenient!

Events

There are many more great events that weren’t mentioned in this blog post. Be sure to keep an eye on our Calendar of Events page as this is constantly updated when new events are announced!

Book Your Trip Today!

Now you know exactly when your favorite Aruba events are taking place, you’re ready to book your trip. Don’t forget to check out the Deals & Offers page to save on your next vacation. See you in Aruba!

Tags

Events, Event, Music, Concert, Sports, Culture, Cultural Events, Activities, Things to Do


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