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Aruba was, like it's sister islands, Curaçao and Bonaire, first inhabited by the Caiquetios who migrated north from the Orinoco Basin in South America and settled approximately 2,000 years ago. Remnants of their culture can still be found at a number of different sites around the island: pottery, earthenware, and other artefacts at the Archaeological Museum in Oranjestad and at the Historical Museum of Aruba at Fort Zoutman and William III Tower; and cave drawings in the Fontein and Guadiriki Caves and at Arikok National Park. The Spanish landed in 1499, but never controlled the island, and Aruba became a clandestine hide-away for pirates and buccaneers. At Bushiribana on the northeast coast, the ruins of an old pirate castle still remain standing. The Dutch captured the islands of Aruba, Curaçao, and Bonaire from the Spanish in 1636. Aruba is now independent.
The population of Aruba is of mixed descent and can trace its ancestry back to 40 different ethnic backgrounds from around the world. The native language is a Creole dialect called Papiamento which is made up of elements of Dutch, Spanish, English, French, Portuguese, a number of different African languages, and Arawak Indian. Nearly everyone on the island speaks English, Spanish or Dutch, the official language.
Aruba, is known as a lively, friendly island, with a lot of activities and entertainment. However, this is a small Caribbean island, 20 miles long by 6 miles wide, and has the same cultural roots as Curaçao and Bonaire. So, although it has developed attractions, entertainment and services for tourists to a much higher degree than it's sister islands, Aruba still retains a relaxed, unhurried atmosphere. Although there is a lot going on, it is never frantic, always friendly. Aruba has miles of very wide, white-sand beaches, fringed with palm trees, along the Turquoise coast, so named because of the colour of the ocean, where the sea is calm and warm. Some of the finest beaches you will ever see.
Aruba is a typical Caribbean, 'paradise' island, holiday. Aruba has the same climate as Curaçao and Bonaire, sunny, almost always 29ºC (84ºF), kept fresh by the almost constant breeze. The weather and beautiful beaches being a major attraction for tourists. A vibrant nightlife has developed, and Aruba has numerous restaurants, clubs, bars, casinos and various activities and entertainment, catering for a very wide range of tastes, centred primarily on Oranjestad the capital. Much is made of the 24 hour casinos, live shows and other entertainment available. It may it may sound like a mini Las Vegas, but there is no intensity to this side of the nightlife, and so the atmosphere remains low key and comfortable. In spite of the number of tourists attracted to Aruba each year, the beaches, clubs and restaurants are rarely crowded. Aruba's beaches and nightlife are very popular but the majority of the land and ocean are almost completely untouched.
The ecological wealth and diversity is now recognised, and protected, and there are now many opportunities to explore Aruba's remarkable environment. Ocean conditions are perfect for water sports, scuba diving and snorkeling. There are excursions for those interested in wildlife. Much of the habitat, away from developed areas, is pristine. Aruba is an island of contrasts. Nature lovers can go bird-watching in a protected sanctuary. Those who prefer privacy can find a secluded stretch of beach. Others can take advantage of Aruba's nightlife, the theme parties, the music and dancing. Aruba also shares with Curaçao and Bonaire, some of the best scuba diving sites in the world, with several interesting wrecks. Although lively and busy, Aruba is a small Caribbean island, and because of it's size, history and culture, it still has the relaxed atmosphere so evident on Curaçao and Bonaire.
Bonaire Fun Travel
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