The Dutch-owned island of Aruba is sometimes dubbed The Happy Island, according to Global Grasshopper.
It’s not hard to see why — and why Aruba has cemented itself as one of the Southern Caribbean’s most popular islands to visit — when you take into account the following especially beautiful parts of this country sited close to Venezuela.
Of course, any prospect of visiting the Caribbean at all could make you initially picture a beach vacation.
Aruba certainly has no shortage of beaches — and one of the most popular here is Eagle Beach, an expansive coastal strip where pristine white sands and awe-inspiring ocean views abound. Oh, and don’t worry — there is a good amount of space for parking.
Arikok National Park
This park makes up about 20% of the island and is strewn with spectacular caves as well as some rock drawings made by the Caquetío people, the island’s earliest inhabitants.
However, it would be a good idea for you to ask a guide to help you develop an in-depth understanding of the park’s beauty.
As you explore Arikok National Park, you might come across this natural pool, which has been referred to as ‘Conchi’ — meaning ‘bowl’ — and ‘Cura di Tortuga’, meaning ‘Turtles Cove’.
The calm and clean pool is classed as natural because it has resulted from a unique rock formation.
“Quinta Del Carmen is a beautifully restored 100-year-old mansion with Caribbean architecture and a pretty courtyard restaurant,” The Sun’s Donna Smiley has commented about one stunning landmark she came across in Oranjestad, the capital of Aruba.
However, there are also many other reasons to visit the city — such as the National Archeological Museum, where artifacts from as long ago as 2,500 BC are on display.
De Palm Island
The Caribbean does, of course, have plenty of different islands. There are P&O cruises that stop at Curaçao and Bonaire — and, as Condé Nast Traveller indicates, 20-minute flights connect those two islands to Aruba.
However, even Aruba itself isn’t technically just one island, as De Palm Island — where flamingos particularly feature — is located off the country’s mainland.
Roughly two kilometers northeast of Oranjestad lies the volcanic mountain of Hooiberg — which, being about 165 meters in height, is Aruba’s second highest mountain.
Of course, it’s up to you whether you climb that mountain, admire its beauty, or do both.
Casibari Rock Formations
What geological event created these formations? Scientists have struggled to even speculate about the answer, and an appealing sense of mystery has developed around this site as a result.
Since it looks as though the rocks have simply fallen from the sky, these rock formations have sometimes been considered sacred.
The Donkey Sanctuary
This animal sanctuary was established in 1997 and has since been busy rescuing injured or abused wild donkeys and providing them with a safe new home.
As you can even feed and hug donkeys at this attraction, it makes an especially great place to visit if you love animals or are in Aruba with kids in tow.