Bring your family home to Aruba!
In Aruba, island hospitality is extended to families with warm smiles, helping hands and a special introduction to new experiences as well as favorite pastimes. An unforgettable family vacation is easy in Aruba. The sheer number of options, combined with the island’s safe, friendly environment and proven great weather, makes Aruba a natural choice for family vacations.
Inquisitive kids are most often enchanted with the island’s wildlife of lizards and prehistoric looking iguanas, the parakeets that streak through the sky with a bright, piercing call and the abundance of tropical fish found at snorkeling sites. Active adventures are plentiful and range from a heart-racing ride on a speedboat, sailing on a wooden “pirate ship” or diving on a real submarine. Teenagers seeking greater challenges may want to steer their own kayak, ride a horse through the Aruban countryside or catch their own dinner on a fishing trip.The slow rise of the trail reveals a landscape full of surprises with cacti-studded views opening up to reveal the stretch of rock-hewn coastline and the jump of salt spray with the incoming tide. Accompanying the scene are the reliable sounds of a horse’s hoof beat, the hum of an ATV or even thesteady rhythm of your own breath as your family group travels along bike and hiking trails lined with the silent sentry of ancient rock formations.
On other days, the satisfying splat of a paintball hitting its target, the thud of a ball making contact with the tennis racket or the crack of wood before a golf ball sails serenely into the distance help mark a vacation filled with memorable moments and challenges.
Ancient rock formations and caves excite the imagination often lead the way down darkened tunnels, which open u larger sunlit chambers and bats flying safely to the darker rec of shallow underground grottos. Climbing the rocks ground at Casibari or Ayo present a challenge to adventure minded kids as they play in and around the huge boulders.
Children relish their first encounter with a donkey, listening to the bray of a donkey’s welcome or feeling the soft of its snout as it nuzzles at a proffered carrot. A menagerie of different animals and discoveries await intrepid, young explorers, whether it is a visit to the Donkey Sanctuary, Ostrich Farm, BirdSanctuary or Butterfly Farm.
The spotlight follows the dancer’s quick movements with the light momentarily flashing across the face of the young spectator, enthralled with the talented performer, shimmering in sequins and moving in perfect step to the vibrant Latin rhythms. The choices of live shows at the various theaters or even the latest film releases at the cinema highlight an evening family outing.
Aruba’s mild evenings offer yet more opportunities for excitement, whether it is a round of eighteen holes on the miniature golf course or opting for the brilliant, flashing lights drawing young gamers to a game room, go-kart track or batting cages.
From the vantage point of the beach, families delight in prime views of clear, turquoise waters stretching out and deepening to an azure blue at the horizon. The soothing sounds of the water’s ebb and flow, the brilliance of an ever-present sun, and the caress of a soft wind slowly lulls sunbathers as the kids create their sandcastles and relish the refreshing splash of the waves.
Water play is brought to even greater heights with water parks presenting innovative ways to dash into cooling waters. Winding, colourful slides draw bathers as sprays of water rain down on smiling groups of adults and children as they revel in the easy joy of a day spent together.
Bursting underwater, tethered to an oxygen tank a comforting 20 feet away on the surface, kids safely get their first real sense of the diving experience. Inquisitive fish quickly come into view, as interested in the little swimmer as he or she is amazed at their colourful markings and swift movements.
Bustling resorts which seemingly offer as many activities as rooms, delight children with special surprises of water slides, lazy rivers and game rooms decked out in tropical themes. More intimate settings allow for more beach play and quality tie spent in each other’s company.
Connecting rooms or two-bedroom suites, keep families close, but still allowfor quiet time for parents and grandparents. Daily kids programs also allow your little adventurers to make solo discoveries of an island perfectly suited to both the beachgoers and active explorers. Babysitting services are also available through most resorts.
Fully-equipped kitchens are also available feature in many resort suites, particularly in those resorts that offer timeshares, as well as traditional vacation rentals. Having a kitchen while vacationing is a perk that many parents often overlook, but when you are dealing with the picky appetite of some youngsters or the seemingly insatiable appetite of your teenager, the benefit of having a fully-stocked fridge in terms of both convenience and cost-savings cannot be overlooked.
To read first-hand accounts of other families’ vacations in Aruba, please visit our Aruba Trip Reports Page. For additional information on family activities and general Aruba information, go to Aruba.com