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Give me everything you've got on Aruba

Old Mar 10th, 2003, 07:35 AM
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Give me everything you've got on Aruba

I will be going to Aruba in October for my honeymoon. I would appreciate info on any and everything. I will be staying at the Tamarijn most likely. We are interested in beaches, sightseeing, horseback riding, the caves and any other recommendations.
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Old Mar 10th, 2003, 08:38 AM
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Is there a reason people don't answer my questions?

I never get more than one answer when I post questions......
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Old Mar 10th, 2003, 08:50 AM
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Hi. Aruba is great! We were there last September...weather was sunny and perfect (but hot) everyday. It's breezy there but it feels good. We stayed at the Radisson on Palm Beach and it was beautiful. The hotel and the beach. As far as beaches go Palm Beach and Eagle Beach are the best I believe. The water is an amazing turquoise color.

Must dos:

Eat at El Gaucho! best steak I have ever had. And get a pitcher of sangria.

Take the Jolly Pirates snorkel or sunset cruise.

Definitely do the Kukoo Kunuku party bus...it was a blast!

I also recommend renting a jeep and touring the rugged side of the island. We went on a tour but wish we would have done it ourselves.

Go to happy hour and watch the sunset at Kokoa's on the end of the DePalm Pier next to the Radisson.

Let me know if you have any more questions!

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Old Mar 10th, 2003, 10:09 AM
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Make dinner reservations at "Flying Fishbones" and sit with your toes in the sand and watch the sun set. It's very romantic!
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Old Mar 10th, 2003, 10:30 AM
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You should use the search feature as well... As any and everything is a fairly broad request.
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Old Mar 10th, 2003, 10:34 AM
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My husband and I honeymooned in Aruba, also. The most romantic thing we did (and smartest) was to rent a jeep for the week. We traveled up the coast towards the lighthouse, and along the way (in residential neighborhoods) we found several beaches in which we were the only people there! It was wonderful! We brought lunch, and layed in the sun together all day alone! I wish I was there now...

While you have the jeep, spend time touring the island (skip the annoying jeep tours and do it yourself). Somewhere along the way we found this little local lunch place and had a ball!

Also, take the jolly pirates booze cruise (tons of fun!), and eat at El Gaucho. Smoke a cigar too there too at their lounge- it's a "must do". Have a wonderful time!!
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Old Mar 10th, 2003, 11:10 AM
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Definitely rent a vehicle, it's very easy to drive around Aruba, and much, much bettter than taking tours (buses are HOT!) Natural bridge is cool, also driving through the national forest (which is....cacti!) The other good beach is Baby Beach. Bring a picnic lunch and spend the day hanging out. It also has good snorkelling around the breakers. Be sure and do your island touring early in the day to beat the big bus tour crowds, epsecially if a cruise ship is docked. No snorkelling really from Palm and Eagle beaches. Deep sea fishing is very good off Aruba --it doesn't take too long to get to some serious open water. There's no real beach bar scene, you basically just hang out at your own hotel, or walk down to the next hotel. The only non-hotel bars I found (on Palm beach) were Kokoas on the pier (they may be owned by one, who knows) and the fisherman's coop between the Holiday Inn and the Marriot timeshares (far end of Palm beach). This is a fun place with cheap cold beer, and actual local folks hanging out eating and drinking, playing volleyball, watching sports on TV, etc. Oh--how can I forget--driving back from Baby Beach you swing through town next to the refinery and stop at Charlies bar. It's one of those tourist-legend bars in an unlikley place but very cool to hang out in.
Madame Janette's is a very good, very romantic restaurant. Make reservations. Vegetarians please skip next two lines: El Gaucho is also excellent. The beef actually tastes like it came from an animal! If you haven't had real South American beef you'll have a hard time eating at your local Outback, or wherever, when you get home. If you like to dance (latin), the clubs downtown are super and get cranking around 10-11pm. No personal experience with the bar hop bus since we do enough damage on our own...hmm what else? Parasailing is really good on Aruba. You get great height and angle because it's so windy. You can actually see across the entire island from the air. Take your (disposable) camera and get your very own aerial-view photo. Prepare yourself for extremely strong sun and wind. Also, wear water socks or flipflops on the sand if you're tender footed, the beaches are so brilliantly white because they're crushed coral, and that can feel like walking on razor blades after a while. If you do go barefoot your nail polish will wear off in a couple of days, but you won't be needing a pumice for callouses.... The beaches and water are beautiful--without a doubt! Don't bust me up on this last one, but here goes--Aruba's lots of fun for people watching on the beach. Noticed that lots of Columbians and Venezuelans vacation here. They tend to be extremely tan and wear very little, regardless of age, gender or amount of body hair. In any case, you should have a great honeymoon!
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Old Mar 10th, 2003, 12:19 PM
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Got back from Aruba 3 weeks ago, we had been to the island before but the last time was 8 or 9 years ago. We thought the island looked prosperous, tourism seemed to be booming! We rented a car for a couple of days, definitely recommended, Aruba is easy to get around.
We stayed at the lowrise section but not at the Tamarijn. Anyway, we much prefer this part over the highrise hotels, much bigger beach so more space for everybody.
The climate was great as always, we liked going in February for a change, it was somewhat cooler than in the summer. The breezes are wonderful!
All in all we had a great time, good food (recommend restaurant 'Le Dome' for a romantic dinner and nice wine), very friendly and helpful people everywhere. Also, Aruba felt very safe. (We have been to St. Maarten/St. Martin these last few summers and while we like it a lot, it is much messier than Aruba and there is more crime - nothing has ever happened to us but we do feel we have to 'watch our back'.)
I can't help you with the horseback riding and the caves, maybe someone else can tell you about that. Have fun!
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Old Mar 10th, 2003, 12:38 PM
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Thanks to everyone !!!!!

Tamarijn is all-inclusive. I have never been to an all-inclusive and fear that I might be missing out on local dining.
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Old Mar 10th, 2003, 12:59 PM
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Is there a reason you are favoring the Tamarjin? I would never recommend an AI on Aruba, there are too many great restaurants. Also don't think the Tamarjin is a great choice for a honeymoon. If you are on a budget I think you could find a better resort on Aruba for your money. October is off season so rates are low.
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Old Mar 10th, 2003, 01:24 PM
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If you are set on an al, I think Bucuti may be a better choice (based on what I've heard)

But I'd recommend the Hyatt or Radisso on Palm Beach. You can't go wrong with either one.
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Old Mar 11th, 2003, 04:49 AM
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jedivader

You will find Aruba to be a wonderful honeymoon destination in October. All the families will be back in the states(because of school) and the only ones you will see there are honeymooners and couples.

Very romantic!

We enjoyed our sunset cruises and long walks on the beach.

Definitely rent a jeep and explore the island too.

Baby Beach is a must, very pretty.

You can take a horse & buggy carriage ride in downtown.

We enjoyed eating at Gator Jakes (I think that is what it is called downtown).

Also the Marriott has a nice restaurant right on the beach. You may want to splurge and go outside your all inclusive for this one.

We weren't crazy about the caves, but you could rent 4 wheelers which seems like fun.

Horseback riding on the sunset is awesome too.

Enjoy and give us an update.

Congratulations.
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Old Mar 11th, 2003, 10:13 AM
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Thanks again to everyone.

I am kind of torn between getting an all-inlusive and eating out on the town. I have been told that things are expensive there.

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Old Mar 11th, 2003, 12:06 PM
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Actually, I found the meals to be quite reasonable. I know I would have paid a lot more for my steak dinner in the US.

Drink are another story, they are quite pricey in the resorts. But if you find happy hours and places other than the hotel, you should be fine.
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Old Mar 11th, 2003, 02:57 PM
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hi again!
My husband and I had an all-inclusive deal at La Cabana, but we both agreed that we should not have. We spent most of our days out and about, and we got sick of eating at the same restaurants after 3 days. We love to party and we didn't even get our money's worth with the cocktails, because we went out to enjoy the nightlife often (not to mention to booze-cruises which included meals- jolly pirates, etc.)
If you guys just like to lounge in one place, however, AL may be for you. If you're the exploring type, however, you may find you leave the resort early and wind up returning late...
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Old Mar 12th, 2003, 09:42 AM
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ahrodriquez and anyone else.....

Do you know anything about Druith beach on which the Tamarijn is located?

I have read that the sand is kind of rough (sharp/jagged/rocks) on the feet, is that true?

Any tips on where to get the best deal/rate on renting a jeep or moped.

Also, I have read the nude sunbathing is not allowed on Aruba but does anyone know about topless and/or thong bathing suits?

Thanks again for all the details from everyone.........
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Old Mar 12th, 2003, 09:53 AM
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Druiff and Eagle Beach kind of blend together and yes sometimes that beach can get rocky and hard on your feet especially when trying to enter the water. Palm Beach doesn't seem to have that problem. But the water is rougher in the low-rise area than the high-rise.

You will find more topless sunbathing in the low-rise area especially in front of Manchebo and the Amersterdam Manor beach as they get a lot of non-American guests.

If you rent a jeep and go to the other side of the Island (think it's the North side but I'm not good with directions) you will find some deserted beaches but swimming may be dangerous in that area but you could sun bathe nude.

I wouldn't advise renting a moped just too much traffic and doesn't look to safe. Sorry can't help with where to rent a jeep.
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Old Mar 12th, 2003, 02:58 PM
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We stayed at the Bucuti last year and LOVED it. I can't say enough wonderful things about that place! Amazing beach, great service and a very reasonable price. However, it is NOT all-inclusive. I would definitely not choose to stay in an all-inclusive resort in Aruba. The diversity and quality of the restaurants on the island was fantastic. I would feel like I was missing out on a lot of the island culture if I felt obligated to eat every meal at the resort. Just my 2 cents...

Have a great trip!
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Old Mar 13th, 2003, 04:57 AM
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Completely in agreement with janepaul.We stayed at the Bucuti last spring and it was the best. We wanted a quiet, relaxing getaway, no kids or families and Bucuti was perfect. Our favorite restaurants were Madame Janette's ( which is a kind of pepper not a "madam") and Flying Fishbone (yes, the tables are out on the sand and if you get a 6 o'clock res, you will be toasting the sunset). We did not rent a vehicle, but we did take a van tour of the island, and our guide was very friendly and knowledgeable. We were happy we chose the airconditioned van over the "jeep safari" as it was quite warm and dusty that day! We took cabs to our restaurants. Not cheap, but because we spent most of the daytime hours on the beach it seemed a waste to rent. If you do want a taste of the big resorts, try the Marriott Sunday brunch or stop in for a drink at any of the resorts. They are quite impressive with lush landscaping, waterfalls, etc...the Bucuti and other low-rise resorts are much simpler...but Eagle Beach has no comparison anywhere. A fun party scene is Carlos and Charlies (all ages - we are in our 50's and had as much fun as the 20 somethings.)And oh yes, we told the Bucuti that it was my birthday and they provided balloons and champagne in our room!
 
Old Mar 13th, 2003, 04:00 PM
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jedivader-
I wish I could help you with some beaches, but we really did spend the week exploring and finding our own private beaches, which were not rocky and they were lovely!
As for nude sunbathing, it was all over the place- even at the La Cabana beach (which is very family oriented) there were lots of topless women (my husband loved it! )
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