Home Destinations 15 Best Things to Do in Aruba 2024 for Families & Adventure Seekers

15 Best Things to Do in Aruba 2024 for Families & Adventure Seekers

by Naoi Rei
15 Best Things to Do in Aruba 2024 for Families & Adventure Seekers

Aruba, the tiny Dutch Caribbean island, is a slice of paradise that sits just off the coast of Venezuela. With its bright turquoise waters, soft white sands, and endless sunshine, Aruba is the dream spot for families and thrill-seekers. Knowing the top things to do in Aruba can turn a great trip into an epic adventure. Here are the 15 must-do activities to throw into your game plan for 2024.

1. Bask on the Shores of Eagle Beach

Eagle Beach is famous for its spotless sands and clear, gentle waters. This spot is perfect for families since little ones can frolic in the water without worry. It’s also a hot spot for watersports, so you can take a whirl at jet-skiing or windsurfing. And don’t forget, Eagle Beach is also a cherished nesting site for turtles, which adds a special touch to your visit.

2. Explore the Arikok National Park

Covering almost one-fifth of Aruba, Arikok National Park is filled with natural marvels. Trek through wild landscapes, meet the local critters, and be wowed by old cave drawings. For an absolute thrill, head over to the park’s natural pools, like Conchi, where you can jump in for a cool splash.

3. Snorkel at Boca Catalina

Aruba’s crystal-clear waters are a dream for snorkeling, and Boca Catalina is one of the prime spots to peek at the underwater life. This quiet bay is a playground for vibrant coral reefs and schools of tropical fish. Even if you’ve never snorkeled before, you’ll have a blast here in the calm and shallow sea.

4. Sail on a Sunset Cruise

Witness the charm of a Caribbean sunset from the comfort of a catamaran. Watch as the sun slips away below the sea, painting the sky shades of fiery orange and pink. Feel the night breeze and lose yourself in the breathtaking views. This is the perfect way to mix sightseeing with chill vibes, whether you’re with your sweetheart or with your family.

5. Visit the California Lighthouse

Standing tall at the island’s northwestern edge, the California Lighthouse is a guiding star offering bird’s-eye views of the gorgeous coastline. Named after a ship that met its fate nearby, this lighthouse isn’t just great for photos; it’s a piece of Aruba’s seafaring history. Climb to the top and your eyes will thank you for the unforgettable scenery.

6. Learn to Windsurf at Palm Beach

Palm Beach is a windsurfer’s paradise, with calm seawaters and reliable breezes. It’s a fantastic choice for brave hearts ready to pick up a new hobby. Look for windsurfing schools lining the coast that teach all experience levels and ages.

7. Delve into Aruba’s History at Fort Zoutman

History buffs should make a beeline for Fort Zoutman if they want a crash course in Aruba’s past. This historic museum in Oranjestad dives deep into the island’s heritage. Roam the fort, built way back in 1798, and if you can, drop by for the weekly Bon Bini Festival to get a real feel of the local tunes and steps.

8. Take an Off-Road Adventure to the Natural Pool

Tucked away in Arikok National Park, the Natural Pool, or “Conchi,” is a hidden swimming hole surrounded by rocks. To get there, get ready for a kick of adrenaline on an off-road journey, best tackled in a 4×4 or by joining an ATV tour. The path may be wild, but the destination is a peaceful oasis ideal for a swim or snorkel.

9. Pedal Through Aruba on a Bike Tour

If you like to keep moving, sign up for a guided bike tour. It’s a green way to soak up more of the island’s sights and secret spots. Pedal through the bustling streets of Oranjestad, zoom along coastal paths, or spin through the national park. Biking is a thrilling ticket to Aruba’s views and will boost your fitness to boot.

10. Unwind at Baby Beach

Down in Aruba’s south is Baby Beach, a sheltered slice of sea with knee-deep, tranquil waters ideal for the kiddos. The crescent-shaped shore offers a calm retreat where you can soak up the sun’s warmth. The sea here is clear as glass and teems with marine life right offshore—perfect for a snorkel adventure.

11. Try Deep Sea Fishing

Aruba’s surrounding deep blue is a hotspot for big catches like marlin, mahi-mahi, and wahoo. Set sail on a boat for the day with pros who will show you how to land the big fish. This is a rush of excitement—feeling the tug, battling the catch, all the while surrounded by the stunning sea.

12. Savor Local Flavors at Aruba’s Restaurants

Aruba shines with a lively eatery scene, boasting spots that dish up local specialties and world flavors. Dig into classics like keshi yena, a cheesy delight, or savor seafood caught that very day along the waterside. Eating your way across Aruba is a joy and a cultural journey in itself.

13. Trek to Hooiberg for Stunning Island Views

The Hooiberg, meaning ‘Haystack,’ is a volcanic lump that shoots up 165 meters, promising the most breathtaking views of Aruba. Sure, the 560 steps to the summit are a workout, but the 360-degree snapshots are a sweet payoff. On days when the sky is clear, you can even catch a glimpse of Venezuela!

14. Enjoy Nightlife in Oranjestad

Once the sun sets, Aruba pulsates with nightlife energy. The capital, Oranjestad, is a playground of bars, clubs, and casinos where you can throw yourself into the dance till dawn or press your luck. The electric mood is catchy, offering a night scene for every type of nighttime explorer.

15. Attend a Cultural Event or Festival

Aruba’s calendar is jam-packed with cultural happenings and festivals that highlight the island’s traditions and lively spirit. From the dazzling Carnival to the Aruba Soul Beach Music Festival, getting into these events gives you a richer taste of the local way of life. Time your trip with these celebrations for a holiday that breaks the mold of the usual sightseeing tour.

FAQs

1. What is the best time of year to visit Aruba for outdoor activities?

Aruba is amazing all year thanks to its constant warm breeze and rare showers. Still, the golden period for outdoor fun is from January to March. The conditions are top-notch and the island is abuzz with cultural fiestas.

2. Are there activities for children in Aruba?

Heck yes, Aruba loves families with plenty of kid-friendly thrills. Safe swimming shores like Baby Beach, hotel and resort kid zones, and pools designed for families are all over. Plus, little ones can get a kick out of snorkeling, making buddies with butterflies at the Butterfly Farm, and hanging with the donkeys at the Donkey Sanctuary.

3. Do I need to rent a car to enjoy the best things to do in Aruba?

While you can hop on buses or hail cabs, having your own set of wheels lets you roam free and discover the island on your timetable, especially if you want to hit up spots like Arikok National Park or tucked-away beaches. But hey, for guided tours or cruise outings, you often get a ride included or it’s a snap to arrange.

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