Best What to Do in Aruba Cruise Excursion 1
|

Best What to Do in Aruba Cruise Excursion

This post contains affiliate links. As an Amazon associate, I earn from qualifying purchases.

Greetings Internet Stranger, and welcome to a perfect what to do in Aruba cruise excursion day. Aruba is one of those names that conjures up relaxing beaches and luxury homes.

However, there’s another, more off-the-beaten track side to Aruba, and that’s the side I’d like to show you today.

Stella’s Top 3 Picks: What to Do in Aruba Cruise Excursion

#1 TOP PICK

Best What to Do in Aruba Cruise Excursion 2

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
BEACH AND CAVE TOUR
✔️ Unlimited rum punch and lunch
✔️ Expert local guide

#2 PICK

Best What to Do in Aruba Cruise Excursion 3

JEEP TOUR
✔️ Most popular tour on Viator
✔️ Lunch included

#3 PICK

Best What to Do in Aruba Cruise Excursion 4

ALL OTHER ARUBA TOURS
✔️ Find your favorite!
✔️ Get the best deals

It would be ideal to spend a few days on Aruba, one of the Caribbean’s most charming islands, but sadly we don’t have enough time. If you are in Aruba as part of a one day shore excursion, like I was on my most recent Royal Caribbean cruise out of San Juan, Puerto Rico, then this itinerary is perfect for you. I recommend booking a guided tour to find the best things to do in Aruba.

You can book my favorite tour by going here.

However, even if you’re just visiting Aruba on your own, this what to do in Aruba cruise excursion day will be perfect for you! I’ll show you all the most beautiful and delicious spots on the island! Let’s not waste any more time!

what to do in aruba cruise excursion day

what to do in Aruba cruise excursion day

Morning: Driving Tour of the Island

Aruba is one of the most stunning islands, nature-wise, that I have ever been to. That’s why I think any what to do in Aruba cruise excursion day needs to include a driving tour of the island. And it’s much more convenient to hire a local guide who can do the driving for you and point out all the most interesting things to see.

You can book a separate guided tour, like this one, that will take you to the most beautiful and interesting parts of the island. I can’t guarantee that you’ll see exactly the same stops that I did on my shore excursion, but I can be sure that you’ll find some amazing and gorgeous spots you can see anywhere else in the world.

Check rates and availability by clicking here.

Then get ready for a stunning experience with…

Approximately Top 5: Aruba Shore Excursion Things to Do

what to do in aruba cruise excursion day
1) Casibari Rock Formations

The Casibari Rock Formations is one of the most interesting viewing points in Aruba. No one knows exactly how these rock formations came to be, which just adds to their mystique and mystery. Aruba isn’t exactly stuffed with high mountain peaks, so this is a great spot to get a unique view of the island.

Your driver will drop you off near the rock formations, and then you’ll get a chance to climb to the top–it’s a pretty short and easy climb. Most of the people on the cruise shore excursion with me were retired, and none of them had trouble making the climb.

what to do in aruba cruise excursion day

I also found these statues of the Blues Brothers waiting outside a nearby restaurant, but no one would tell me what they are doing here. I assume they were trying to find their way home back to Chicago, but maybe they realized that the weather is a lot nicer in Aruba and decided to stay.

what to do in aruba cruise excursion day
2) San Nicolaas

Aruba isn’t a massive island, so your drive should take you through San Nicolaas, which is the second largest city in Aruba, after Oranjestad. Our guide said that the government is trying to turn part of San Nicolaas into an arts district. This would provide an interesting contrast with Oranjestad, which is quite overrun with shops.

I hope your driver will take you through San Nicolaas on your tour because they are finishing new murals here all the time, and the effect is quite lovely.

what to do in aruba cruise excursion day
3) Lourdes Grotto

Aruba is a majority Catholic country, which surprised me a bit because it’s still part of the Netherlands, which isn’t a Catholic country. But that’s why Catholic shrines like the Lourdes Grotto are important here.

This shrine was built to be similar to the Lourdes shrine in France, but it’s obviously different because it’s smaller and built into the side of the road.

You’ll probably only stop here for a brief photo break, but it’s interesting to be able to see a place that’s important to so many people in Aruba. And I certainly would never have been able to spot this place on my own.

what to do in aruba cruise excursion day
4) The Famous Caves of Aruba

OK, now it’s time for the highlight of the tour: the famous Quadirikiri and Fontein Caves of Aruba. I was able to visit both caves on my tour, and I hope you’ll be able to do the same. It’s quite dark in the caves, and flashlights aren’t allowed, but you can use the light from your cell phone, and you’ll be just fine. Use it to spot the stalactites and stalagmites sprouting all over the cave.

Our guide told us that there’s a rock that looks like an indigenous princess, and there’s a tragic love story about her and this cave. Apparently she fell in love with a young man and her father didn’t approve, so he trapped her in one cave and her paramour in another.

Did they make it out of the caves alive? You’ll have to take the tour to find out. But spoiler alert! Neither one is alive now because they are both fictional.

what to do in aruba cruise excursion day
4) More Nature!

Right by Fontein Cave is a pretty pond full of tilapia. Our guide said it wasn’t safe to drink the water, but we could still our toes in the water and get a fancy pedicure because the tilapia like to eat the dead skin from people’s feet.

I am still not sure if he was serious or not because no one took him up on his offer. If you go for the tilapia pedicure while you’re enjoying the what to do in Aruba cruise excursion day, please let me know!

what to do in aruba cruise excursion day

And just past the Fontein Cave to the north is the Boca Prins, a gorgeous isolated beach. You won’t be able to go for a swim here, but you will be able to climb down and take pictures.

Just keep in mind that, like at the top of the rock formations, it is extremely windy, so don’t let your sunglasses fly away into the sea!

what to do in aruba cruise excursion day
5) Snack Time

We stopped at a popular fish restaurant called Zeerover on the way back, but there wasn’t enough time to get fish. There was enough time to get homemade popsicles or a beer, or both.

I chose the mispel popsicle because I had never heard of mispel before, and when I see something totally unfamiliar on a menu, I need to eat it. It tasted kind of like a date to me–and believe me, I’ve had worse dates than this.

Those are all the Aruba shore excursion things to do secrets that I can share with you for the moment. You’ll have to go ahead and book the tour for yourself if you want to find more!

Check rates and availability right here!

what to do in aruba cruise excursion day

Aruba Shore Excursion Things to Do

Afternoon: Explore Oranjestad

After the tour ends, you’ll have some time to explore Oranjestad, Aruba’s capital city, on your own. Oranjestad isn’t the most beautiful capital in the ABC islands–in my opinion that would be Willemstad, the capital of Curacao.

However, there’s still plenty to do here, especially if you like fish, booze, and beaches. And if you grow tired of fish, booze, and beaches, you grow tired of life, as my grandmother used to say.

So follow me on a romp of some more of the what to do in Aruba cruise excursion day with…

Three Fun Facts: Oranjestad

what to do in aruba cruise excursion day
1) Lunch at The Old Fisherman

At this point in our what to do in Aruba cruise excursion day, we’re going to want some lunch. My guide had recommended The Old Fisherman, which is conveniently located right in the heart of Oranjestad. It’s popular, but it’s large, so you should be able to get a table with no problem.

If you’re into day drinking, I suggest getting this pink frothy concoction called an Aruba Frosty. Here’s what’s in it: Coco Lopez, Ponche Crema, pineapple juice, Bacardi’s rum, Bailey’s, and grenadine.

I had never even heard of Ponche Crema before, but it’s apparently Venezuelan eggnog. Anyway, an Aruba Frosty is basically a very boozy, pink milkshake.

what to do in aruba cruise excursion day

Since this is The Old Fisherman, why not go with the theme and order the fish of the day? I had the mahi mahi, which was funky fresh. However, I could not finish eating all the carbs it was served with. Rice, fries, and plantains is a bit much, even for me.

what to do in aruba cruise excursion day
2) Where Should I Go to Relax?

Are you a fan of exclusive beaches? Do you want to live by yourself on a deserted island with nothing around but sand, sea, and a dedicated staff of servants, there to cater to your every need? Then Surfside Beach is not the beach for you.

However, if you like a good public beach where families come to relax with their kids, a beach that’s easy to walk to from the center of Oranjestad, then Surfside Beach is definitely the spot for you.

For me, it was a lovely spot to relax with a mystery novel. It’s totally free to enter, but do bring your own beach towel. I always have one that I got in Brazil that’s super lightweight.

what to do in aruba cruise excursion day
3) Where Can I Go Exploring?

Oranjestad has a lot of statues, and I think it’s fun to wander about and see how many of the statues’ stories you can learn. Take our friend above. At first I thought he was dedicated to Jan Hendrik and two guys named Albert and Henny Eman.

However, it turns out it’s just a statue of ONE guy named Jan Hendrik Albert Henny Eman, who was the first Prime Minister of Aruba. That’s so many names! Did people call him Henny for short? I hope so!

what to do in aruba cruise excursion day

Next, we have this sculpture of three men and a piano sitting by a pool. They are supposedly three men who composed Aruba’s national anthem, which you can listen to here. It’s called Aruba Dushi Tera, which means “Aruba, Sweet Land”.

The song is pretty, but I think someone needs to warn these gentlemen that their piano is about to fall in the water.

what to do in aruba cruise excursion day

Don’t miss this famous clocktower, located at Fort Zoutman. This is the oldest building in Aruba, and it was constructed by the Dutch using enslaved labor, so it’s considered an official Place of Memory of the Slave Trade by UNESCO. Stop by to pay your respects while you are in Oranjestad.

It’s easy to find Fort Zoutman because there are signs that point to it. It’s just a short walk from the sculpture of the three composers.

what to do in aruba cruise excursion day

One final tip for exploring Oranjestad: don’t miss the street names, which are unique. What’s your favorite going to be? I think mine was Schelpstraat.

Schelp apparently means shell in Dutch, but it looks like schlep, which is the Yiddish word for carrying a bunch of heavy and annoying stuff. So this street will always be Schlep Street to me.

what to do in aruba cruise excursion day

what to do in Aruba cruise excursion day

Evening: Cruise Ship Fun!

If you’re like me, and you’re enjoying this what to do in Aruba cruise excursion day from a cruise ship, now will be the time to head back to your ship. Enjoy the sun setting over Aruba as you kick back and relax with a fruity cocktail.

what to do in aruba cruise excursion day

Of course, you need to pair this fruity cocktail with a soothing classic mystery novel, like an Agatha Christie or a Dorothy Sayers. That’s just science.

what to do in aruba cruise excursion day

Hopefully it’s been enough time since your massive lunch of fish, carbs, and booze at The Old Fisherman, and you now have room for dinner.

As always, I think the soups are the best choice for an appetizer in a cruise ship dining room because it’s easy to make soup for large numbers of people.

what to do in aruba cruise excursion day

And for a main course, something carby and cheesy like this lasagna usually goes over. Again, once you’ve cruised a lot like I have, you get a sense of which dishes are the easiest to make well for a massive gathering.

what to do in aruba cruise excursion day

Normally I say to go with chocolate desserts because who doesn’t love chocolate? But bananas foster can also be festive, though these didn’t contain quite as much rum as that Aruba Frosty.

what to do in aruba cruise

what to do in Aruba cruise excursion day

Where to Stay?

Aruba is an entire island, so you can stay pretty much anywhere. However, if you want to explore during your what to do in Aruba cruise excursion day, I suggest staying in Oranjestad, which is the capital of Aruba. You’ll be centrally located, and if you want to take a tour around this island, this is going to be the best starting point.

That’s why I recommend staying at the Renaissance Wind Creek Aruba Resort. It’s located right in Oranjestad, and only five minutes away from the airport, which is terribly convenient. But it’s also got its own private beaches, if you want to get away from the crowds and relax.

If you want a great deal on this hotel, click here.

And if you’re looking for great deals on thousands of other hotels in Oranjestad, click here. This search engine will help you find the perfect place to stay for your what to do in Aruba cruise excursion day. With plenty of options to choose from, I’m sure you’ll find something for your schedule and budget.

what to do in aruba cruise excursion day

That’s the Best what to do in Aruba cruise excursion day

If you thought this article was funny, check out my travel guide Get Lost.

What would you do on a what to do in Aruba cruise excursion day? Are you ready to start booking your hotel in Aruba right now? Please email me at stellajane@aroundtheworldin24hours.com and let me know!

Stella’s Top 3 Picks: What to Do in Aruba Cruise Excursion

#1 TOP PICK

Best What to Do in Aruba Cruise Excursion 2

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
BEACH AND CAVE TOUR
✔️ Unlimited rum punch and lunch
✔️ Expert local guide

#2 PICK

Best What to Do in Aruba Cruise Excursion 3

JEEP TOUR
✔️ Most popular tour on Viator
✔️ Lunch included

#3 PICK

Best What to Do in Aruba Cruise Excursion 4

ALL OTHER ARUBA TOURS
✔️ Find your favorite!
✔️ Get the best deals

Note: If you want to know how I put my travel itineraries together, just click here. Keep in mind that while each article is about how to spend 24 hours in a place, that doesn’t mean you should ONLY have ONE what to do in Aruba cruise excursion day.

How about a what to do Curacao excursion? You can experience a what to do on Bonaire day. Go for the most fun things to do in Playa del Carmen. Check out the best things to do at Roatan Honduras. Let’s head out on what to do at Riviera Maya. Find the best things to do on Allure of the Seas. Experience the best day tours in Aruba. Enjoy the best tours in Curacao.

Best What to Do in Aruba Cruise Excursion 8

Similar Posts