If you’re looking for water sports and nightlife – or have kids in tow – consider Aruba your happy place. The island is part of the Dutch Caribbean, about 20 miles off the Venezuelan north coast, and a drier climate than other Caribbean islands means it has reliable sunshine. Add to that clean, shallow shores such as Baby Beach, which are great for snorkeling, and you’ll never be short of things to do. When you’re done exploring, here’s our pick of apartments to return to.
Located in the quiet neighbourhood of San Miguel, in the island’s Noord district, Little Jungle Apartments is a mini-village of self-contained units spitting distance from both Eagle and Palm beaches. The gated property is perfectly situated for island access, if you don’t mind walking, cycling or driving. It even has a handy Superfoods store close by. With tropical gardens, a small pool and plenty of shady areas to chill out in, the accommodation has a lovely island vibe. On the northwest coast, it is popular with snorkelers, who spend their days swimming among the marine life at Arashi and Malmok beaches. Head to Eagle Beach to sip a cocktail at sunset.
Choose from four comfortable apartments, all with new furniture and modern facilities, in this adults-only resort. Bubali Luxury Apartments are a welcome addition to the rental scene in Eagle Beach, and all spaces can be reached by wheelchair. This includes the swimming pool, which has a ramp for wheelchairs, and the pool shower. Inside you’ll find a high/low bed, while a personal hydraulic patient lift can be requested. In the north of the island, next to the dynamic Palm Beach, the accommodations are handy for the mainstream restaurants; the more-refined Eagle Beach is just 15 minutes away.
Looking for a holiday that’s truly on the beach? The Coral Reef Beach couldn’t match the spec more perfectly if it tried. This self-catering beachfront accommodation is in sleepy Savaneta, which is predominantly a fishing village. The eight smoke-free boutique apartments are built directly on the stunning white sands – guests have the quiet beach as their personal playground. Don’t expect glitzy clubs or nightlife, but do expect locals, regulars and friendly neighbours, who appreciate the slow way of life. The apartments are self-catering, but there are plenty of places to eat in the area, including the five-star Flying Fishbone Restaurant (10 percent discount for Coral Reef guests). Oranjestad, the island’s capital, is a 20-minute drive from here.
If you’re looking for an exclusive holiday spot, the Swiss Paradise villa should be on your radar. Sleeping nine in three bedrooms, with two bathrooms, it is in the prime location in Aruba’s Beverly Hills neighborhood, just 10 minutes on foot from Malmok Beach. Expect luxe furnishings and fittings, a private pool, steam room and terrace with barbecue – in fact everything you could want to live your best life with those you love on holiday. It’s the dream spot for a trip with friends and those who want to create some Instagram envy!
These brand-new one-bedroom apartments are on the outskirts of the touristy Noord strip: stylish white condos with all the comforts for (eco-)travelers, including air conditioning, double glazing and solar panels. It also supports local business by providing Aruba Aloe toiletries. With a refreshing saltwater swimming pool and terrace, it’s the dream base for friends or solo travelers, and your multilingual hosts, fluent in English, Spanish, Dutch and Papiamento (the Portuguese-based creole tongue of the Dutch Caribbean), are happy to help with questions.
If you’re a group, family or couple, Costa Esmeralda Village will have a crash pad to suit. Hidden behind the Papiamento restaurant in Noord, it is off the high-rise hotel area’s main strip, so you won’t be kept up all night by clubbers – but it’s only a five-minute drive away, should you fancy a night out. Flawlessly designed, the complex has a mixture of cool marble and tropical touches, and every rental has fresh flowers for your arrival. Whether you like lounging by the pool (you have a choice of two), horse-riding, yoga or snorkeling, the owners can make it work.
As you might expect, the Bananas Apartments complex is in a tropical setting, with plenty of banana trees, as well as exotic birds, colorful flowers and coconut groves for shade. The six relaxed bungalows are dotted around stunning gardens, with the pool just footsteps away from your private patio. Located in a peaceful residential area, away from the nightlife of Palm Beach, this is a secret gem, close to Boca Catalina and Arashi beach, with Aruba’s best snorkeling all yours on Malmok Beach, which is walkable.
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