Travel Logs: Palm Beach, Aruba 5 Things to Know
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Travel Logs: Palm Beach, Aruba 5 Things to Know Before You Go
We’re often asked how we end up on such cool adventures during our trips and the truth is, I spend months ahead of time researching on YouTube and Pinterest. One of our favorite things about traveling to new cities (besides finding all the hidden beauty, food, and adventure) is sharing what we discover with all our friends. Whether you’re planning your own trip or just have a case of wanderlust, we’re bringing you our top five tips we learned on our travels across the globe. With another winter in DC upon us, it is time to start thinking of ways to escape the cold. Our favorite way? A quick tropical get-away, and we know just the place for you. Aruba.
Cabs Are Your Friend
A major reason we love Aruba is its convenience when it comes to travel. The flight from the DC area is just a quick and easy 4.5 hours. Beautiful Caribbean beaches in such little time? Who wouldn’t want that! Once you arrive on the Happy Island, Palm Beach is a 20-minute taxi ride, which will cost around $25 – $30. Cabs will likely be your main source of transportation once you are on the island and take it from us, you will enjoy it! After a 7-day family trip to Aruba, we came back raving about how every single cab driver we rode with made our trip better in their own way. Between restaurant recommendations, interesting life stories, and many laughs, we felt closer to the island and the locals because of our friendly cab drivers and the experiences they led us to.
Sail into the Caribbean Sea
Getting out and exploring Aruba by boat is a necessity. We partook in a small boat trip, roughly 10 individuals, where we sailed around Palm Beach taking in the sights, the blue waters, and soaking up the sun from a different perspective. There are several different boat cruises available, but we went with a sailboat so we could have a slow, easy day on the water. We stopped in various locations to get out and explore the waters with snorkels, which added to the experience. If sailboats aren’t your thing, there are plenty of other ways to get out on the water. Parasailing, jet skiing, tubing, snorkeling, stand up paddle boarding, and other options are all available to you up and down the beaches of Palm Beach.
Leave the Beach (sorry) and Explore the Island
If you are anything like me, going to the beach all day, every day while on vacation is your style. Fair warning: the sun in Aruba is strong! A day off the beach won’t hurt, and there are plenty of exciting things to see and do. My personal favorite, and just a ten-minute cab from Palm Beach, was The Butterfly Farm. This beautiful tropical garden is full of colorful butterflies at all stages of life, and it is a great activity for all ages. ATV tours are another popular way to explore the island. Sand dunes, rock formations, and the beautiful coastlines are a few of the main sights you will see on these tours. The ATV tours are led by fun and knowledgeable locals that make seeing the island from a perspective other than the beach a real treat.
Sunsets Go Best with Local Cuisine
Much like the sunsets here, dining in Aruba is a memorable experience. Why not combine the two? There are countless restaurants overlooking the Caribbean, and even some right on the beach. While it is a bit of a trek (30 minutes each way) from Palm Beach, the Flying Fishbone Restaurant is a must-go-to for a sunset dinner. Menu items range from delicious and fresh seafood to high-end meat and poultry, all perfectly and artistically presented. Enjoy your meal under the palm trees with your toes in the sand, the Flying Fishbone is right along the water. Another favorite of mine was Matthew’s Beachside Restaurant. We actually had an authentic American Thanksgiving dinner here, so I did not get to try their usual menu, but they did an amazing job. Delicious food, oceanfront views, and a beautiful sunset make for a truly magical experience here.
Take a Gamble…or Don’t
Something that I did not know until I arrived: Aruba is often referred to as the Las Vegas of the Caribbean. While I did not gamble myself, the casino scene is a big part of the nightlife in Aruba. Palm Beach itself has eight casinos, all of which are in the resort hotels. If you are looking for a lively night out, but gambling isn’t your thing, there are plenty of other options. Both beachfront bars and dance clubs are the norm here, catering to all interests. If you are looking for a one-of-a-kind experience, go to Aruba during their Carnival celebrations. Carnival begins in January and activates Aruba with two months of parades, activities, music, costumes, and more. King and Queen elections take place during Carnival, and the celebrations end with an over the top Grand Parade. Needless to say, whenever you plan your trip to Aruba, there will be plenty of entertainment for you to enjoy.
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