Best Things to do in Aruba – Unforgettable Adventures Await!

This post may contain affiliate links. For more information please read our Affiliate Disclosure.

Are you dreaming of a tropical escape to the sunny shores and crystal-clear waters of an island paradise? Aruba may just be your perfect destination, combining breathtaking natural beauty with a kaleidoscope of activities suitable for any traveler.

Whether it’s lounging on white sandy beaches or diving into vibrant cultural experiences, many find themselves wondering exactly what to plan while vacationing in this Caribbean haven.

As you dive into this blog post, we’ll guide you through the top things to do in Aruba that will leave lasting memories long after your suntan fades. Get ready for a thrilling adventure as we unveil the magic that awaits you! Keep reading; adventure beckons!

Key Takeaways

  • Aruba offers a wide range of beach activities including relaxing on Eagle Beach, snorkeling at Baby Beach, and various water sports at Palm Beach such as parasailing and jet skiing.
  • Visitors can explore the island’s natural beauty through off – roading adventures, guided tours in Arikok National Park, or by visiting De Palm Island to enjoy its waterpark and snorkeling opportunities.
  • The local culture is rich with experiences like touring the Aruba Aloe Factory, sampling traditional dishes such as Keshi yena or pastechi, and exploring art galleries and markets for unique souvenirs.
  • Nightlife includes trying your luck at casinos dubbed the ‘Las Vegas of the Caribbean,’ dancing to live music in clubs or beachfront lounges, and enjoying diverse dining options from upscale restaurants to cozy local bars.
  • Family – friendly attractions include engaging encounters at Aruba’s Ostrich Farm or supporting animal care at the Donkey Sanctuary.


Illustrated map of Aruba
Map courtesy of

Beach Activities

Aruba is known for its pristine beaches, where the white sands invite travelers to indulge in an array of exhilarating water activities. Embrace the warm turquoise waves as you embark on a coastal adventure that promises both relaxation and aquatic excitement.

Relaxing on Eagle Beach

Eagle Beach beckons with its soft white sands and tranquil azure waters, providing the perfect backdrop for relaxation. Visitors flock here to bask in the sun’s warmth, lounging on comfy beach chairs or tucked away in breezy huts that dot the coastline.

You’ll find a serene escape from the busier tourist spots, as Eagle Beach is home to picturesque low-rise resorts that offer quietude and uninterrupted ocean views. Take advantage of the available palapas when you seek temporary shelter from the midday sun or simply relax and savor an iced drink while gazing at the horizon.

Water sports enthusiasts have their share of excitement too with options aplenty—from jet skiing across gleaming waves to embarking on a gentle paddleboarding excursion. 

Every moment at Eagle Beach provides an opportunity for peaceful serenity or thrilling adventure, shaping your Aruba activities exactly how you desire them.

Snorkeling at Baby Beach

Nestled on the southeastern coast of Aruba, Baby Beach beckons adventurers and families alike with its gentle turquoise waters. Its shallow shores provide a safe haven for children to splash around while snorkelers explore the sandy bottom dotted with colorful coral.

The clear, warm water resembles a natural swimming pool that invites visitors to dive in and marvel at the marine life thriving within this small coral reef basin.

Local dive shops stand ready near Baby Beach, offering gear rentals for those eager to survey the underwater landscape. With snorkels and fins in hand, you can glide over the picturesque seabed where colorful fish dart among rocks.

While enjoying these aquatic wonders, heed warnings not to venture beyond the protective barrier as strong currents lie past this point.

After immersing yourself in the vibrant snorkeling scene at Baby Beach, consider drying off and embarking on yet another escapade: water sports await at Palm Beach’s lively stretch of sand and surf.

Water Sports at Palm Beach

Palm Beach in Aruba is a vibrant scene for thrill-seekers and water enthusiasts alike. Its two-mile-long strip delivers an exceptional mix of swimming, sunbathing, and heart-pumping water sports activities.

  • Experience the rush of parasailing in Aruba with Frank’s Place Watersports – soar high above the ocean and enjoy breathtaking views.
  • Tackle the waves and explore the beaches of Aruba at your own pace on a jet ski adventure.
  • Try your hand at kitesurfing with professional instructors ready to guide you as you hover above the waves.
  • Embark on a private charter for a more personalized adventure on the high seas, perfect for families or groups seeking exclusive experiences.
  • Join one of the many snorkeling cruises available that showcase Aruba’s rich marine life beneath its crystal-clear waters.

Exploring Arikok National Park

Outdoor Adventures in Aruba

Aruba’s rugged landscape beckons the intrepid, where the windswept expanses of Arikok National Park offer more than just a backdrop for selfies, they are a canvas for adventure. 

Here, adrenaline seekers can satisfy their yearnings with off-road explorations that unearth the island’s untamed beauty and hidden coves, while De Palm Island presents an exclusive escape to revel in aquatic escapades and bask in sun-kissed serenity.

Exploring Arikok National Park

Set out for a day of adventure in Arikok National Park, an ecological preserve that encapsulates the natural splendor of Aruba. Covering almost one-fifth of the island, this park is a sanctuary where cacti-strewn landscapes meet azure waters.

Trek through the rugged terrain and feel the strength of sea breezes on your face as you discover desert-like landscapes along with unique flora and fauna. Adventurous souls can explore the park by embarking on guided jeep or ATV tours or the hiking trails that wind through these dramatic landscapes. 

Witness striking geological formations like ancient caves adorned with native Arawak drawings or seek refreshment by swimming in the famed Natural Pool. Arikok National Park isn’t just about breathtaking nature, it’s also steeped in history, offering visitors insights into Aruba’s past. 

Visit De Palm Island

Transitioning from the rugged landscapes found in Arikok National Park, De Palm Island emerges as a serene contrast with its all-inclusive resort experience. This unique destination offers a waterpark that’s perfect for both thrill-seekers and families, featuring three large slides and an area specifically designed for children.

Guests can spend their day slipping down the body drop waterslides, banana boating on the ocean or snorkeling off the beach amongst tropical fish in the crystal-clear waters.  

De Palm Island doesn’t just cater to those looking for adventure, it’s also a place where relaxation is also on the agenda. You can lounge on sunny beaches or mingle with the island’s elegant flamingos, which have their own dedicated beach area.

With activities tailored to suit any visitor, whether traveling solo or with family, this popular attraction provides a full day of amusement and leisure wrapped into one picturesque location.

Go on a Catamaran Cruise

Set sail on a catamaran cruise to capture the essence of Aruba’s beauty from the sea. These popular sailing tours glide along the leeward coast, revealing breathtaking views that can’t be experienced from shore.

Choose a snorkeling cruise on a custom-built catamaran for an up-close encounter with Aruba’s vibrant marine life or a sunset dinner cruise.

Whether you’re soaking up sun on deck or diving into crystal-clear waters, a catamaran adventure is a must-visit attraction that embodies what to do in Aruba for those seeking both tranquility and excitement on their vacation.

Mural of a sea turtle in Aruba

Experiencing Local Culture and Cuisine

Aruba’s heart beats not only through its sun-kissed beaches but also within the vibrant rhythms of its local culture and rich culinary heritage.

The island’s unique blend of indigenous, African, Spanish, and Dutch influences crafts an unparalleled adventure for the palate as well as the spirit.

Visiting the Aruba Aloe Factory and Museum

Step into the world of Aruba’s green gold at the Aruba Aloe Factory and Museum. This unique experience takes you through the journey of aloe cultivation which has flourished on the island since 1840, making it a pivotal element in local heritage.

Dive deep into history with free guided tours that unveil how this healing plant shaped an industry. Learn about the restorative properties of aloe as knowledgeable guides lead you across sun-kissed fields to witness first-hand where these succulent plants begin their life before becoming part of sought-after skincare products.

Completing your visit at the onsite store lets you bring home a piece of Aruban tradition. Consider grabbing some soothing after-sun lotion or moisturizing cream packed with pure aloe goodness – perfect for pampering your skin after days spent under the Caribbean sun.

Sampling Traditional Dishes

Exploring the flavors of Aruba is an adventure for your taste buds. The island’s culinary scene offers a delightful fusion of indigenous and international influences.

  • Dive into the world of Keshi yena, a must-try traditional dish featuring a scrumptious filling of meat, vegetables, and dried fruits encased in a hollowed cheese rind. This Aruban specialty reflects the island’s diverse culinary heritage.
  • Savor the various stobas, hearty stews cooked with love, combining tender meats with local spices and herbs. Each bite takes you deeper into Aruba’s comforting home-style cooking.
  • Treat yourself to pastechi at breakfast, crescent-shaped pastries filled with savory ingredients like Gouda cheese or spiced meat. This popular snack encapsulates the island’s Dutch influence.
  • Indulge in sweet delights native to the island, where sugary treats are crafted using time-honored recipes passed down through generations. Sampling these sweets offers a glimpse into Aruba’s food culture.
  • Enjoy dining in a tropical garden run by an esteemed local chef. This unique experience combines fresh flavors with an enchanting atmosphere, creating lasting memories of your visit to beautiful Aruba.

Exploring Local Markets and Art Galleries

Dive into Aruba’s rich art scene, where the vibrant hues of Caribbean creativity come alive. The island’s bustling markets and galleries are treasure troves for those who love to engage with local artistry.

Wander through streets of the capital city of Oranjestad which is lined with shops and galleries showcasing everything from intricate Amerindian crafts to contemporary pieces by Aruban artists. These spaces not only display masterful works but also tell stories of the island’s multicultural heritage.

Make time to visit local markets where artisans and crafts makers sell their handmade goods. Here, you can pick up unique souvenirs that capture the spirit of Aruba – hand-painted ceramics, woven textiles, or colorful beadwork perhaps.

Each piece reflects a slice of the island’s soul and offers a tangible connection to its cultural landscape. As you browse these vibrant displays, you’ll feel the pulse of Aruban life and appreciate the craftsmanship honed over generations.

Go to the California Lighthouse

Climb the spiral staircase of the California Lighthouse to experience one of Aruba’s most breathtaking views. Once at the top, 360-degree vistas unfold before you, showcasing a brilliant panorama of sandy dunes, rocky coral shorelines, and the shimmering Caribbean Sea.

The scenery from this historical beacon is unmatched; gaze out over Arashi Beach and snap postcard-worthy photos or simply absorb the sight of waves crashing against rugged coastlines.

Set on Hudishibana plateau near Noord, this iconic structure stands as a testament to navigational heritage and offers more than just scenic beauty, it provides insight into Aruba’s past.

Visit the Ostrich Farm or Donkey Sanctuary

After basking in the panoramic views at the California Lighthouse, nature enthusiasts can continue their animal-friendly adventures by heading to Aruba’s Ostrich Farm. This unique attraction offers guests an up-close experience with these grand birds.

At this working farm, you’ll find more than just ostriches strutting around; it’s an educational hub where visitors learn about the life cycle and habits of the world’s largest bird species.

For those who favor a more heartwarming encounter, Aruba’s Donkey Sanctuary provides a wonderful alternative. Here lies a safe haven for rescued donkeys, where visitors are invited to interact with over 130 friendly animals that have been saved by generous donations from animal lovers like you.

Feed and pet these affectionate beings while standing on the enclosed porch—a treat for both kids and adults alike. It’s not just about fun, by visiting you support a noble cause that honors donkeys’ 500-year history on the island and ensures their well-being for years to come.

Choose between feathered giants or gentle equines—or why not visit both? Each sanctuary promises its own delightful adventure that connects you deeper with Aruba’s captivating wildlife.

Nightlife in Aruba

Nightlife and Entertainment in Aruba

As the sun dips below the horizon, Aruba’s nightlife emerges with a vibrant array of options to suit any taste – from the thrilling energy of high-stakes gaming to the rhythmic beats that lead locals and tourists alike through a dance-filled evening under Caribbean skies.

The island transforms into an after-dark playground where indulgent culinary experiences and lively social spots promise memorable nights for all visitors.

Indulging in Local Restaurants and Bars

Taste buds come alive in Aruba’s local restaurants where Caribbean flavors meet international cuisine. As twilight descends, you can find yourself sipping cocktails at a beachfront bar, the salt-tinged breeze complementing the island vibe perfectly.

Venture into the heart of town to uncover hidden gems where live music fills the air and bartenders craft drinks with an island flair. From upscale dining experiences to laid-back pubs frequented by locals, every venue offers a glimpse into Aruba’s hospitable culture.

Embrace Aruba’s vibrant nightlife at one of many lounges dotting Palm Beach. Enjoy performances from talented musicians while mingling with both tourists and residents alike—the welcoming atmosphere is palpable throughout these social hotspots.

Here, stories are shared over clinking glasses; each toast is an opportunity to celebrate life on this enchanting island paradise.

Trying Your Luck at the Casinos

Aruba’s nightlife shines bright in the thrill of high-stakes games at its world-class casinos. Known as the “Las Vegas of the Caribbean,” this tropical paradise offers 12 gaming havens for visitors to test their fortunes.

Venture into Wind Creek Crystal Casino, where the promise of riches hums through an elegant atmosphere. Open 24 hours a day, players immerse themselves among over 300 slot machines that chirp and sing with opportunity.

Place your bets at blackjack tables or spin roulette wheels amidst seasoned gamers and newcomers alike in Seaport Casino, famous for its friendly vibe. With diverse options like baccarat and three card poker on offer, each hand dealt is a new chance to win big under the warm Aruban sky.

Whether you’re drawn by the allure of lady luck or simply seek an evening filled with lively entertainment, these casinos blend excitement and elegance into unforgettable nights out.

Conclusion: Top Things to do in Aruba

Embrace the vibrant spirit of Aruba as you create unforgettable memories across its sun-drenched landscape. Revel in the tapestry of cultural experiences, from historic landmarks to flavorful cuisine and lively entertainment.

Let each day bring a new adventure, whether it’s basking on pristine beaches or delving into the heart of nature itself. Your journey through Aruba promises a blend of relaxation and excitement, tailored by your own curiosity and sense of wonder.

Discover an island where every moment is a treasure waiting to be uncovered.

You might also enjoy: