My Fourth Trip to Aruba

My fourth trip to Aruba was planned on a whim. I had decided to visit the ABC Islands of Bonaire, Curacao and Aruba. My last trip to Aruba was about 3 years ago and this trip I decided to do some new things I had never done before. Aruba is a decent sized island but feels bigger because of the amount of development on the island. But you can make it smaller if you focus your stay. Here’s what I did on my fourth trip to Aruba.

My Fourth Trip to Aruba, Aruba, Aruba Marriott, sunset, Palm Beach

I stayed at the Aruba Marriott Stellaris Resort & Casino. This was my first time staying at this property although I had breakfast once on my last trip to Aruba. The Marriott was pretty nice. It is a big property with 2 pools, a family main pool (below) and an adults only pool.

My Fourth Trip to Aruba, Aruba, Aruba Marriott, pool

I personally love when big hotels have an adults only pool for obvious reasons. I love kids but if they’re not yours and all you want to do is relax it can be annoying to have them running around screaming. So I spent most of my pool time at the adults only pool. I might add it was quite beautiful-see below.

My Fourth Trip to Aruba, Aruba, Aruba Marriott, adult pool

My Marriott room was pretty standard with a nice view of the beach although it wasn’t beachfront. The bed was extremely comfortable and balcony made it really homely.

My Fourth Trip to Aruba, Aruba, Aruba Marriott, view

The restaurants at the Marriott were plentiful and all were OK. They had a lobby sushi place that was good, a few restaurants around the property and a Ruth’s Chris Steakhouse; which I always love! There is also a lobby Starbucks that I went to each of my 3 mornings!

My Fourth Trip to Aruba, Aruba, Aruba Marriott, Palm Beach

The hotel is of course located on beautiful Palm Beach. Palm Beach is one of the most beautiful beaches in the Caribbean and also one of the most crowded and overbuilt. Walking down the beach is no longer a charming, relaxing walk. It is now loaded with watersports vendors, loud music coming from certain resorts and tons of people. I still love Aruba but Palm Beach has lost a step in my view.

My Fourth Trip to Aruba, Aruba, Aruba Marriott, Palm Beach

The coolest thing I did on my fourth trip to Aruba was to check out the flamingos on a private island operated by the Renaissance Aruba Hotel. In order to get there you leave from the street level of the Renaissance in Oranjestad via boat from inside the mall. It sounds complicated but it’s very easy.

My Fourth Trip to Aruba, Aruba, Renaissance Aruba, flamingo beach, flamingo

Once you get to the island after a 20-minute ride or so, head straight to Flamingo Beach. The flamingos literally walk right up to you. It’s a great photo opportunity with the water and palm trees. It’s clearly manmade but it’s also very unique. I had never been so close to flamingos before. I had seen a ton on Bonaire but it was from very far away.

My Fourth Trip to Aruba, Aruba, Renaissance Aruba, flamingo beach, flamingo, Lee Abbamonte

I suggest going early before a lot of tourists arrive. Assuming you’re basically going just to take photos of and with the flamingos, you’ll want to go early. There will be annoying people taking awkward selfies but that’s the world we live in these days. I can’t understate that I loved seeing them, feeding them and taking pics of and with them. It was probably my favorite thing about my fourth trip to Aruba.

My Fourth Trip to Aruba, Aruba, Renaissance Aruba, flamingo beach, flamingos

I also finally played golf on Aruba. The Tierra Del Sol Golf Club is the place to play on Aruba. It’s the only 18-hole course on island and is pretty nice. It’s very difficult to maintain a golf course in a dry, island, desert-like environment like you have on Aruba. So there will be a lot of brown grass or dirt spots. But it’s still beautiful.

My Fourth Trip to Aruba, Aruba, Tierra Del Sol, golf

The course itself is tough because of the wind. The wind over Aruba can rip 30-40 mph on the regular. It’s hard to drive into the wind and control the ball. I shot an 82 and was pretty happy about it considering the heat and the wind.

My Fourth Trip to Aruba, Aruba, Tierra Del Sol, pool

After golf, there is an excellent little restaurant, bar and pool at Tierra Del Sol for the 19th hole. The steak sandwich is excellent and the pool views are gorgeous.

My Fourth Trip to Aruba, Aruba, Renaissance Aruba, Madame Janette

Honestly, I didn’t do too much on my fourth trip to Aruba but relax and get some sun. It was actually really nice. I did go to a restaurant called Madame Janette that I thought was fantastic. I highly recommend it and it’s reasonably priced for massive portions of top-notch food.

My Fourth Trip to Aruba, Aruba, sunset

Aruba has become like Cancun or Punta Cana in my view. It’s a beautiful place that has become overbuilt but you can still have a great experience if you accept what it is, the amount of chains, tourists and cheesy shops. As I always say, tourists only go to good places. That’s what Aruba is, a very good place. I look forward to my fifth trip sometime soon!

Comments

  1. Good article Lee. I agree with you that Aruba is overbuilt but remains a fantastic island regardless. Progress comes to beautiful places as more and more people wish to visit. But Aruba, where I have a timeshare, maintains its sense of self and really earns that moniker of One Happy Island.

  2. I was in Aruba back around 2000 sometime. It was developed then. I’d be scared to see it now.

  3. It looks so awesome pictures in your post. I really like the beauty of that place. Thanks for sharing it Lee.

  4. It seems to be a nice place to visit. And the pictures are amazing.

  5. Great photos and a very good selection of ideas! it seems so wonderful!

  6. Great article, Lee! There are many nice Caribbean islands, but what’s your personal favorite?

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