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Aruba Attractions and Things to See

Aruba, in the Southern parts of the Caribbean, is an island about 18 miles long in the Lesser Antilles about 14 miles from the coast of Venezuela, and together with the islands of Curacao and Bonaire are often referred to as the ABC Islands of the Leeward Antilles, the southern chain of islands that belong to the Lesser Antilles. It is one of four countries that form the Kingdom of the Netherlands, along with Curacao, the Netherlands and Sint Maarten share the same nationality of Dutch citizenry; and it is quite unique in comparison to the other islands of the Caribbean in that it has a dry climate and arid, cactus filled landscape.

The climate is one of the most significant draws to the island by tourists that come to expect warm sunny weather, and it lies outside the hurricane belt, with 69 square miles of land and densely populated with 103,000 people. Its main industries have included; petroleum refineries, tourism, gold mining, phosphate mining and aloe export. It is mostly a flat, riverless island, famous for its white sandy beaches on the western and southern coasts that are generally sheltered from the wild ocean storms, and where the majority of tourist development has occurred. The island's eastern and northern coasts that didn't have the protection as did the other two sides would be more regularly battered by the sea, so they have been left alone thus far by humans. It has some rolling hills, the best known being Hooiberg that rises up 541 feet, and Mount Jamanota that is the island's tallest peak at 617 feet.

The island has one of the highest living standards of the Caribbean that includes a low unemployment rate, with almost three quarters of their GNP earned with tourism or activities that pertain to that, with the majority of tourists coming from the USA or Venezuela. According to the Bureau Burgelijke Stand en Bevolkingsregister (BBSB), as of 2005, the country was home to 92 different nationalities. Its Queen Beatrix International Airport near Oranjestad has daily flights from America's major cities, a few in Canada and South America, France, Spain, UK, Germany and most of Europe through the Schiphol airport in the Netherlands, with a majority of the travelers coming here from the United States. It also has two ports called Playa and Barcadera that are located in Oranjestad, with port of Playa welcoming ships from NCL, Royal Caribbean, Disney Cruise Line, Carnival and Holland America. They also have public bus transportation and outstanding rental cars that make your exploring easier and cheaper.

Some of the more interesting places of interest include; Sint Nicolaas, Alto Vista Chapel, Palm Island, Arikok National Park, Eagle Beach, Ayo and Casibari Rock Formations, Tierra Del Sol Golf Course, California Lighthouse, Natural Pool, Quadiriki caves, Frenchman's Pass, Lourdes Grotto, Natural Bridge and the Caves of Aruba.