Best time to visit: March, April, May, June, July, August
Average high: 30˚C
Average low: 26˚C
Price of meals: 3/5
Holiday type: Adventure / Beach / Family / Party / Romantic
For guaranteed sunshine, hot temperatures tempered by cool winds, and white, sandy beaches throughout the year, visit the Caribbean island of Aruba.
Aruba’s coastline might be comparatively small (the island is only 20 miles long), but it is full of turquoise water and white beaches, including Eagle Beach, frequently rated one of the best beaches on the planet for its clear water and calm waves. However, there are also beaches better suited to thrill-seekers and water sports enthusiasts: from surfing and jet skiing, to snorkelling and diving down to discover World War 2 shipwrecks.
While most guests seek accommodation on the lively and beautiful Palm Beach, Aruba is also worth exploring by land. The dry, tropical landscape has created a desert island where visitors can delight in the natural beauty via hiking, horse-riding, or jeep tours.
Natural sites include Arikok National Park, where you can climb mountains and witness lava formations. The island also has caves to explore and stunning rock formations offering spectacular views. Meanwhile, there is also plenty of fauna, which you can observe in the wild by air, water, and on land, or in one of the island’s sanctuaries, including butterflies, donkeys, birds, and ostriches.
Of course, the main allure of Aruba is its natural wonders and relaxation, but there are interesting man-made sites to see, too. The California Lighthouse, on the island’s northernmost point, offers incredible vistas, while there are numerous museums and old buildings around to get a handle on the island’s history.
For party-goers, there are lots of hotel bars and clubs around the main tourist spots, but try to enjoy at least one Kukoo Kunuku: a night-time bus which will pick you up from your hotel, includes a glass of Champagne, and will take you on a tour of three or four of the island’s best bars.
Aruba lies at the very south of the Caribbean, meaning it enjoys warm and consistent sunshine without suffering seasonal heavy rain or hurricanes. The island remains dry throughout the year—even during the so-called wet season, from October to February, most rainfall comes in the form of night-time showers; so, your beach time is unlikely to be disturbed. Despite the persistent sunshine, ocean winds are equally prevalent, so skin temperature is very comfortable.
Although located off the coast of South America, Aruba is part of Europe and has long been a popular tourist destination. Consequently, meal prices are more comparable with Western Europe than Latin America. A three-course meal for two averages between £40 and £60, while a meal for one will more likely cost about £8. Unusually, domestic beer is much more expensive than imported beer, averaging £4.50 and £2 per bottle, respectively. Meanwhile, coffee and water are more comparable with UK prices, at £2.30 and £1.45, respectively.
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