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Aruba on Our Own


cds62

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We have pretty much decided to do Aruba on our own and rent a Jeep for the day. What are the must see things and places? What are the best family oriented beaches since we will be travelling with children 12 and 10.

Any suggestions are appreciated.

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Renting a Jeep is a great idea! We have two sons aged 18 and 14 now. We took our 14 year old there last year and we rented a 4 x 4 also. It is great fun!

 

If you head left from the cruise ship port (not sure what direction that is) you'll be on the main road that runs right up to the tip of Aruba where the lighthouse is and where the sand dunes are (very cool) and then the road turns into a dirt road for the back side of the island where the terrain is rough (perfect for the 4 x4) and the waves are crashing into the rocks. Very beautiful. You will find the little chapel, the mine ruins, a natural bridge and the very famous natural bridge that collapsed (still worth the visit)

 

Aruba is very easy to navigate.

 

There's a McDonald's there if the kids have that craving.

 

We also went to the beach there on that road where you turn left on before you get to the big hotels. It's a public beach...very nice. We rented a jet ski there.

 

Along that same road and to the right there is a very large IGA grocery store. Great for anything you need for eating and drinking at the beach. The aloe factory is also close by there should you be interested in some of that for a souvenir.

 

Baby beach (very famous beach) is clear at the other end of the island and to my liking not worth the drive, but if you like shallow water it definitely would be worth the drive.

 

Hope this helps you.:)

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  • 2 weeks later...

Hi ,

I go to Aruba every yr. for 10 yrs now. You can rent jet ski's on both Palm and Eagle beach . Eagle is the Largest and very calm. All beaches in Aruba are public. Your Family would love the Ostrich Farm and Butterfly Farm. Both are fun and educational. A Must see by 4x4 or car is the Alto Vista Church very small and old. Its the most relaxing place to collect thoughts. Sits on top of a hill over looking the ocean..in the middle of no where in the desert. (great photo spot) Also California Lighthouse, Natural Bridge which collapsed last Sept. There is a smaller one right aside of it. Well worth the drive along the coast. The Island is very diversified with landscape. One spot totally different from the other. There are a few parks with beautiful rock formations that are very interesting to see.

You can get a local map online or in their daily news paper ,Aruba Today. They post a map in the paper everyday. It will show you all the tourist spots to go to and the Rts.. They have a few gold mine ruins that are interesting as well as caves. There's also a few towns to drive through one always different from the other. For a nice walk to check out some resorts . Do the boardwalk at Palm beach. Great snorkeling at Malmok, Arashi, Catalina Beaches. Those are right after the High Rises on Palm Beach on the way to California Light House . Lots to do but it depends on what you like for activities and what you have time for. Its all there.:cool: Have Fun !!

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  • 4 weeks later...

Any recommendations for car rental companies? What is a competitive price for a day rental?

 

We will have our child with us . . . so we'll need a carseat (if we don't bring our own). I suppose we could rent a non-deep vehicle for the day? I always hear about 'jeep' rentals, as opposed to car rentals.

 

thanks~

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We have pretty much decided to do Aruba on our own and rent a Jeep for the day. What are the must see things and places? What are the best family oriented beaches since we will be travelling with children 12 and 10.

Any suggestions are appreciated.

 

When will you be in Aruba? We'll be there on Nov. 8th. I've rented at Jeep at the Pier with Royal. They first quoted me $85.00 for one day and I got them to come down to $75.00. If you are in Aruba before me, please let me know how your Jeep experience went. thanks!

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Aruba also offers Jeep tours and ATV tours that will take you to places you'd never attempt on a day visit on your own..Few different companys offer.pretty much the same.I liked Rancho Diamari best (sp)You would get the history the geological . topography and monography of this diversed Island ..A tour would be a good thing for a day if your interested in why this island is like it is and how it and its people survived over the centurys.. Jeep /car on your own if you just want to look and not know what or why your seeing so many different torraines and landmarks. If you have a week you could read and re-search a few days or two.. Or Let someone take you through it. If you just want activities and water sports ..Eagle and Palm beach have it all..right on the beach..If you want to just rent an umbrella and chair Moomba Beach huts / Bar in between Marriott and Holiday Inn (Palm Beach) Amsterdam Manor and Brutucchi on Eagle Beach. Oh! take a bus...$2.00 ...Cab $17.+ Baby beach is great for snorkleing but its a long drive..More private and interesting snorkeling Catalina , Malmuk and Arashi Beach , all in a row...on the way to California lighthouse ..right past fisherman huts after the highrises. Could Bus. Enjoy and have fun...Did both Jolly pirates and Mi Dushi liked Mi Dushi better ( also a pirate like ship) Crew halerious, you get a BBQ lunch and snorkle in 3 spots..one of which is the Antilla Ship wreck..check out www.visitaruba.com for detailed stuff to do and the prices...check out the BB to read other folks experiences and questions....Have Fun...its my home away from home. I go back in May..

Deb in Ma.:cool:

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For the children Baby beach!!! All shallow beautiful beach

Yes it is beautiful and shallow..nice for kids...BUT..watch your kids and yourself because near the breakwater wall is a really tuff current and at high tide it can get fierce ..I Love it there too..to my surprize one time . The current just took me out past the breakwater ..I felt lucky to get in an area that I was able to get near rocks to hold onto and scale myself back to shore....Also ,I snorkle everyday I'm in Aruba. Here and other spots for years. Just be carefull..Baby beach can be tricky at times. Don't let your kids near the breakwater even though its shallow its dangerous.

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Can you see most things by taking a car or do you need a jeep? What does the jeep give you access to that a car will not?

 

And if you do decide to get the jeep how do you know where it is ok to drive if you go off road?

 

Many thanks to all!

A 4 x 4 vehicle is not necessary or required, it will however allow you easy access to some of the eastern side of the island. All of the "roads" on that side of the island are dirt paths. Arikok National Park's beaches such as Boca Prins and Dos Playa are reachable by car but the Natural Pool is only accessible with a 4 x 4.

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Ok all you Aruba regulars, we also plan to rent a jeep and would like to do a shore dive if there are any really good ones on the island then we need some don't miss suggestions. Sounds like you CCer's could map us out a fun day to see Aruba. We have seen enough beeches and are looking for some unique nature oriented places of interest.

 

What is the California lighthouse and can you go up to the top?

 

Thanks for all the information already posted.

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Yes it is beautiful and shallow..nice for kids...BUT..watch your kids and yourself because near the breakwater wall is a really tuff current and at high tide it can get fierce ..I Love it there too..to my surprize one time . The current just took me out past the breakwater ..I felt lucky to get in an area that I was able to get near rocks to hold onto and scale myself back to shore....Also ,I snorkle everyday I'm in Aruba. Here and other spots for years. Just be carefull..Baby beach can be tricky at times. Don't let your kids near the breakwater even though its shallow its dangerous.

A couple vacation in Aruba drowned in this spot last week. When snorkeling here do not go out past the breakwater of the rocks.

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Ok all you Aruba regulars, we also plan to rent a jeep and would like to do a shore dive if there are any really good ones on the island then we need some don't miss suggestions. Sounds like you CCer's could map us out a fun day to see Aruba. We have seen enough beeches and are looking for some unique nature oriented places of interest.

 

What is the California lighthouse and can you go up to the top?

 

Thanks for all the information already posted.

For general information on shore diving in Aruba see ShoreDiving.com

For operators regarding shore dives contact JADS Dive Center or Winde’s Watersport Aruba

 

The California Lighthouse is located at the northern tip of the island and though functional is not open to the public. My dd was very disappointed :(

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After checking some of those rental company prices out, I see that Top Drive has Wranglers for $60 per day and they are located at the cruise ship terminal. Sounds like a great deal, especially if Royal wants $85 per day.

 

Does anyone have any experience with Top Drive?

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What beach was it you went to that you rented jet skis?

You can stop at either Eagle or Palm Beach for the jet ski rental. They do not keep the jet skis themselves actually on the beach. You will taken by boat to a platform where the skis are moored when not in use (during the day). Too much wear and tear on the machine beaching them all of the time to get people on and off.

After checking some of those rental company prices out, I see that Top Drive has Wranglers for $60 per day and they are located at the cruise ship terminal. Sounds like a great deal, especially if Royal wants $85 per day. Does anyone have any experience with Top Drive?

I just read in another forum where a couple had rented a Chrysler Sebring Convertible from Royal and they were extremely happy with everything. I know nothing about Top Drive, but having had 2 bad rental experiences on the island (in 11 years), I do know that cheaper is not necessarily always better.

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We are looking to see some of the fantastic beaches of Aruba so we are thinking about a rental car for the day... Anyone have any suggestions about this? Is it possible to hit Malmok Beach, Eagle Beach, and Palm Beach by bus? That would obviously be cheaper but not as convenient assuming we may want to take in another sight or two or stop somewhere for lunch or shopping. We want to snorkel and just hang out on the beaches. Is parking at any of these beaches an issue if you have a rental car? What rental car companies should be avoided or recommended?

 

Thanks for all your feedback!

 

Ronny & Peggy in Maryland

 

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