Nearly 20% of Aruba is part of this national park, which sprawls across the eastern interior and the northeast coast. The park is the keystone of the government's long-term plan to preserve Aruba's resources and showcases the island's flora and fauna as well as ancient Arawak petroglyphs, the ruins of a gold-mining operation at Miralmar, and the remnants of Dutch peasant settlements at Masiduri. Arikok Center, at the park's main entrance, houses offices, restrooms, and food facilities. All visitors must stop here upon entering to pay the admission fee and get information on park rules and features. Within the confines of the park are Mt. Arikok and the 620-foot Mt. Yamanota, Aruba's highest peak. A 4x4 vehicle is highly recommended for any serious exploring.
Anyone looking for geological exotica should head for the park's caves, found on the northeastern coast. Baranca Sunu, the so-called Tunnel of Love, has a heart-shape entrance and naturally sculpted rocks farther inside that
look like the Madonna, Abraham Lincoln, and even a jaguar. Fontein Cave, which was used by indigenous peoples centuries ago, is marked with ancient drawings (rangers are on hand to offer explanations). Bats are known to make appearances—don't worry, they won't bother you. Although you don't need a flashlight because the paths are well lighted, it's best to wear sneakers.