Hi loves! I’m currently writing this from an airplane… first time for everything right?! It’s about the only time in the last few weeks I can sit without any distractions and write a long blog post (which this will be).
I am so excited to share my Aruba travel guide with you. We had an absolute blast and I think we did quite a lot of activities and ate at a lot of popular restaurants which you will love as well. First off, I want to THANK each and every one of you that were constantly sending me recommendations so we could have the absolute best time. We took so many into consideration and I am so happy we did, because y’all recommended some AMAZING places. So thank you, thank you, thank you!!! 🙂
I wanted to explain the reason why we went too. If you followed along on Instagram, you would have noticed my parents invited Lane and I to Aruba for their 30th wedding anniversary! So we were kinda along for the ride, which was great! Ultimately, it was up to my parents what and when they wanted to do things, but like I said previously, we did do a lot of your recs.
Where we stayed: We stayed at the Amsterdam Manor in Eagle Beach. At first, I was a little hesitant because this resort is neither downtown or in the midst of the high rises, it is dead center. Those are the two most touristy places. Downtown is where the Renaissance Resort is where you can boat to their private island to see the flamingos. This resort was BEAUTIFUL, but I am glad we didn’t stay there. #1 – it is extremely busy because that is where the cruise port is, #2 – there is a mall inside of this resort so it is extremely busy (again) at all times and #3 – there is no immediate beach right outside the resort. This may be up your alley, but we are glad we steered clear from that after visiting. I honestly wouldn’t mind staying in the “high rise” area which is on the West side of the island. It is very commercialized, but in a better way I believe. The RUI Palace, Hilton, Hyatt, etc. are all located in this area and there are also a ton of restaurants that are walking distance. Okay – back to Amsterdam Manor – we rented out the Penthouse Suite which was 2-bedroom, 2-bathroom. It was gorgeous! I am really happy we ended up staying here because we were smack-dab in the middle of everything. 10 minutes to downtown (lots of traffic – that’s why) and a short 4 minute drive to the high-rises. We also had the BEST beach (Eagle Beach) in Aruba right in front of us. They have a option where you can do all-inclusive, but to be honest we didn’t opt for that because we heard the food in Aruba was amazing so we didn’t want to feel like we were stuck eating at the resort every.single.day. I cannot say enough things about Amsterdam Manor. The staff and our stay were amazing! Make sure you visit Pete, the bartender, he makes some badass drinks! I think Lane tried every single one on the dang menu LOL.
Where we ate: Aruba has the best food and COFFEE hands down! We were very impressed. We had our fair share of steaks, seafood, burgers, desserts! Everything was tip top! A ton of the restaurants we went too were on the beach which I love. Gives you the beach vibes you’re looking for when going to an island like that. There are a ton more places to eat that we heard great reviews on too, so definitely explore and find more for yourself as well.
Here are a list of the restaurants we ate at:
- MooMba Beach Bar – on the beach – High Rises
- Passions on the Beach – SO GOOD – located in Eagle Beach (best filet I’ve ever had and the key lime pie was amazing!!!)
- The Dutch Pancakehouse – Best pancakes on the Island – Downtown Aruba
- Barefoot Restaurant – Another on the beach – SO GOOD – Downtown Aruba
- Gelatissimo Bistro – they have the best gelato!! – High Rises
- Amore Mio Pizzeria – you know I had to try some Aruba pizza – High Rises
- Diana’s Pancake Place – another great breakfast place – but I honestly liked The Dutch better – High Rises
- BUGALOE!!! – Down in the high rises – best view on the island! Perfect for drinks and/or food. This is a must for anyone traveling to Aruba!
- Eduardo’s Beach Shack – Inside the Playa Linda – OMG best ever! See picture below!
- Super Food – OK so this is a grocery store, a very upscale one at that. I think everyone deserves to check it out.
List of restaurants we did not eat at, but were recommended by many:
- Madame Janettes
- Screaming Eagle
- Flying Fishbone
- El Gaucho
What to do: Aside from eating and drinking and laying on the beach, there are a few things to do in Aruba…
- Flamingo Beach (Must be staying at the Renaissance Resort or get a day pass from the resort – first come, first serve)
- California Lighthouse
- Eagle Beach (prettiest beach on the island!)
- Donkey Sanctuary (see below)
- Ostrich Farm
- Rent a Jeep to Explore the Island
- Natural Pool
- Mangel Halto – Beach with the best snorkeling
- Arikok National Park
- Quadirikiri Cave (inside the National Park)
Ok, I think that is it, but if you have any other questions – just ask me 🙂 I know quite a few of you are going in the next few months! I am so jealous! It’s absolutely beautiful and you will have a blast! Plenty of sunshine, food and drinks to last a lifetime 🙂