First day arriving in Aruba. I walked out of the airport and felt a warm breeze hit my skin. That feeling was sooo needed after what seemed to be a long lasting winter back in New England. Surprisingly enough, customs weren’t like your typical customs. There are about 5 machines that scanned your passport and you look in the camera and it takes your picture and you’re done and good to go collect your luggage right downstairs. There are a few stations that have people but I’m assuming they want to make things run faster and save money by putting the machines there and replacing actual people questioning your reason of stay etc. After all, it is vacation and should be stress free. That’s what I liked starting off in Aruba. The people, are so kind and a lot of smiles when you arrive, you are greeted. For the first time, I bought alcohol at the duty free shop and got a big bottle of grey goose for 30.00, not bad. My cab fare to the resort was 25.00 which I guess is standard since they don’t have shuttles that runs back and forth to the resorts in the islands and airports, which is odd in itself. The first resort I arrived at was the Divi Aruba Phoenix Beach Resort. This resort was very nice and huge. I waited 30 minutes in line to check in and waited an additional hour to get the key to my room because check in is 4:00pm in Aruba for the most part which is pretty late, usually it’s 3:00pm the latest but since the resort is big, I assume it takes time to clean every single room.
The first day I spent walking around the resort and later that night I went on a bar crawl tour at 9:00. I booked the tour through viator.com. It was a 3 hour tour and it was fun. The bus is lit up and decorated and the people on the tour were fun and live! I must admit, the shots that were given at each bar we stopped at were watered down and weak. So you should pre game before you go which is what I did and purchase your own drinks at the bar. Some of the music at the last two bars played music from the 90s and not the good kind and they played Latin music for the most part which is understandable. I requested two songs and they weren’t played which was a bummer. I wanted to dance to music that is at least current regardless of the genre and if it is old, let it be classics that are still bangers. I did not get drunk but I did get very tired after. Long travel day and the sun will make you exhausted.
The second resort I checked in was only down the road and it was called Holiday Inn resort and casino. It was smaller than the first resort but I actually liked that since I didn’t want to be around too many people and it was also across the street from all the stores, bars and restaurants so I didn’t need transportation. For the next few days I went ATV riding and to the natural pool which was beautiful and didn’t seem as though I was in Aruba but maybe in a desert somewhere with the edge of the ocean clanging on to it. That was the only activity I have done and didn’t do much else besides walk around and drink at the pool side bar at the resort, while getting discounts because I swear the bartender felt bad or me because I was alone lol. I was told that the snorkeling isn’t that great because of the winds so if that’s your main reason for going, I wouldn’t make that your top priority but the reefs are still beautiful and fun so still make it something to do. I attempted to fly my drone in the air again but it was still too windy and I just gave up my hopes that I would have amazing above footage. The food in Aruba is good, not the best that I’ve had but they have a few Jamaican restaurants on the island if you want a real Caribbean dish. I didn’t eat much cuisine dishes as I was on a budget. They also don’t have too many healthy spots on the island so you may have to order salads etc or smoothies at some of the chained spots. They did have Starbucks that had great AC if you want to chill in there. Also, getting around is pretty easy and it can be a bit too hot to walk everywhere but once it cools down a bit, it’s great. Being on the beach was great to lay out in the sun, and relax but if the wind blows, the sand will hit you so hard it might sting you a bit because the winds are at least 20mph and have reached 25mph. So check the forecast before going to get an idea of what time is best to hit the beach when the winds aren’t so strong.
I will for sure come back to Aruba again but just not alone and also if the flight is cheap. I prefer Costa Rica over Aruba for the fact that the food is better and there is a lot more activities to do including hiking in the rain forest. I want to try out the Bahamas because in forums because compare Aruba and the Bahamas with pros and cons so if love to see which one is actually more better. Overall I give this trip a 5.5/10.