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-   -   Aruba, Curazao or Bonaire (https://www.fodors.com/community/caribbean-islands/aruba-curazao-or-bonaire-811580/)

Castellanese Oct 24th, 2009 03:10 AM

Aruba, Curazao or Bonaire
 
Hey,

I'm planning to spend a week in the caribbean and I'm considering one of this islands. What do I like? Quiet beaches with a quiet town, strolling, hiking... I definitely don't like red-carpet-Las Vegas-like islands filled with casinos, people wanting to see and be seen and/or nightclubs.

Any recommendations?

Thanks!

virginia Oct 24th, 2009 05:59 AM

eliminate aruba. too busy. considering the other traveling you've done i'd like to suggest tobago, st. lucia or especially grenada. there are several recent trip reports for grenada you might read through.

KVR Oct 24th, 2009 07:17 AM

We've been to Aruba and Curacao. I agree if you want a quite town with no casinos, I would skip Aruba. Curacao was much quiter and laid back. We enjoyed the downtown area as the shops were like nice department stores with no one harrasing us to look or buy things. There are a few resturants on the water front. We like the beaches better on Aruba and the shopping area. There are more abundant restuarants in Aruba and they are easier to get to.

shirleyk Oct 25th, 2009 01:39 PM

We have stayed on all three islands. The quietest, laidback island is Bonaire. There is one tiny little town with a few restaurants. We strolled around at night, had a few drinks in places along the beach and then found a place for dinner. During the day, Bonnaire is all about snorkeling and diving. The people were very helpful and friendly. We rented a car because we like the convenience of coming and going as we please.

Castellanese Oct 26th, 2009 04:05 AM

Thanks everybody for your opinions points of view! Bonaire seems to be the island!

ode Oct 27th, 2009 08:28 AM

Bonaire is awesome for nature. It's peaceful, not built up, and has great snorkeling. The beaches, albeit small, are beautiful.

Angler973 Oct 27th, 2009 11:02 AM

We've been to all three of the ABC islands (Aruba, Bonaire, Curacao. They are very different from one another. Bonaire is the most quiet and laid back, but other than the beaches and snorkeling (which is awesome), there is not much to do. Curacao is charming, and has a beautiful town with lots of interesting sites to visit. Aruba can be very busy and crowded, BUT if you pick a quiet resort in the low-rise area like the highly rated Bucuti Beach Club, it is very, very nice. The beach at Bucuti is possibly the best in the Caribbean. Also, Aruba has by far the best restaurants. Like they say, "You pays your money, you takes your choice."

drsaloni Oct 27th, 2009 09:01 PM

I agree with the above, Aruba is like tropical disneyworld, wouldnt go back there again. I loved Curacao & its sounds like it will suit you well.Very quaint, quiet, charming but not much of the beach anywhere, just man made beaches here & there very rocky.If you can spend definitely stay at the Kura Hulanda, you will get the true flavor of Curacao & its sister property has a man made beach.Bonaire I havent been to but I know its much more laid back & have heard if you dont snorkel or fish you wouldnt have much to do but I could be wrong about Bonaire, havent been there.Dont stay at the Hilton in Curacao its run down, Marriott is very nice as well.
Enjoy !

Castellanese Nov 1st, 2009 02:59 AM

Thanks again, guys!

However, I've decided to go to Tobago. I've already bought my plane ticket and I'm plannig my itinerary!

I live in Venezuela, though, and it seems that Curazao (this is the Spanish spelling) and Aruba are other options that I'll keep in mind for future trips (they're just half an hour away by plane). I've heard so many mixed opinions about Aruba. Many Venezuelans visit it, though, but it doesn't seem to be a laid-back place.

Thanks again!


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