Aruba

ONE HAPPY ISLAND—This small piece of land located in the Southern Caribbean has easily become one of my favorites to visit while in the Caribbean. One thing that caught me by surprise was the dry climate and field of cacti in every direction. The low rainfall and warm temps in Aruba year round only mean one thing, perfect destination.

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Population: Approximately 30,000

Language: Papiamento, English

Culture: Some Dutch influence

Don’t get me wrong, many islands in the Caribbean can be considered perfect destinations but one problem I encounter is too much rainfall during hurricane seasons which can interfere with plans and literally rain on your parade. The combination of the most beautiful beaches in its region and perfect weather make this place one happy island indeed.

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The Ayo rock formation is a small, easy to climb rock formation that is free to visit and is without a doubt worth the 20 minutes or so that you’ll spend there. The top of this formation will give you one of the best panoramic views of the island. Aruba is also a Dutch island like Curacao. The primary language spoken by Arubans is Dutch for this reason. Since tourism is a major boost for their economy, rest assured that the majority of citizens here do speak English. There is good shopping to do here that is duty free but I believe once you catch a glimpse of the prestine beaches, you are not going to want to spend your time anywhere else.

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If you’re looking for the perfect resort to stay at, I highly recommend the RIU palace. RIU is known for their beautiful luxury resorts in the most exotic  places and this locations is one of the most phenomenal that I have come across. The pools in the resort are large, very clean and most importantly just steps away from the beach.

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There is a tiki hut right above the water that can be found directly in front of the resort with great food, free wifi and breathtaking views. Even if you are not staying at the hotel, you can find your way to the beach and enjoy the perfect beach the hotel guests do…but you didn’t hear that from me.

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The locals are very friendly and inviting. They live off of tourism, it’s what keeps their island thriving and it shows with their kind nature and hospitality.  Most citizens know and speak English so getting around the island is not a problem at all. Not sure that I recommend walking alot here, although Aruba is beautiful it is insanely hot, walking for long periods of time will suck, alot.

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I’ve been to quite a few islands in the Caribbean but this one holds a little piece of my heart. Any island where I can indulge in tropical eats, shop, go to the beach all the while barely spending money and feel so welcomed is the perfect destination for me.

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