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Aruba Vacation and Travel Guide
Aruba is a Constituent Country and is one of the four countries that form the Kingdom of the Netherlands, along with the Netherlands, Curaçao and Sint Maarten. The citizens of these countries all share a single nationality: Dutch.
Aruba has no administrative subdivisions, with a population of just over 100,000 inhabitants, does not have major cities. However, most of the island's population resides in or surrounding the two major city-like districts of Oranjestad (Capital) and San Nicolaas. Furthermore, the island is divided into eight districts, which are: Noord, Oranjestad, divided in two districts Paradera, San Nicolaas, divided in two districts, Santa Cruz and Savaneta.
Aruba is located in the southern Caribbean Sea, about 1,600 kilometres (990 mi) west of the main part of the Lesser Antilles and 29 kilometres (18 mi) north of the coast of Venezuela. It measures 32 kilometres (20 mi) long from its northwestern to its southeastern end and 10 kilometres (6 mi) across at its widest point.
Together with Bonaire and Curaçao, Aruba forms a group referred to as the ABC islands. Collectively, Aruba and the other Dutch islands in the Caribbean are often called the Dutch Caribbean.
Aruba is a generally flat, riverless island in the Leeward Antilles island arc of the Lesser Antilles in the southern part of the Caribbean. Unlike much of the Caribbean region, Aruba has a dry climate and an arid, cactus-strewn landscape. Xeric scrublands are common, with various forms of cacti, thorny shrubs and evergreens. With the most known plant being the Aloe vera, which has a place on the Coat of Arms of Aruba.
This climate has helped tourism as visitors to the island can reliably expect warm, sunny weather. Aruba has white sandy beaches on the western and southern coasts of the island, relatively sheltered from fierce ocean currents. This is where most tourist development has occurred. The northern and eastern coasts, lacking this protection, are considerably more battered by the sea and have been left largely untouched by humans.
The island of Aruba, being isolated from the main land of South America, has helped the evolution of multiple endemic animals. The island provides a habitat for the endemic Aruban Whiptail and Aruba Rattlesnake, as well as endemic subspecies of Burrowing Owl and Brown-throated Parakeet. The rattlesnake and the owl are printed on the Aruban currency.
Tourism in Aruba
Aruba has one of the highest standards of living in the Caribbean region. There is a low unemployment rate. The economy of Aruba is an open system, with tourism currently providing the largest percentage of the country's income. About three quarters of the Aruban gross national product is earned through tourism or related activities.
Most tourists are from the United States (predominantly from the north-east US), the Netherlands and South America, mainly Venezuela and Colombia. The tourist industry here is extremely well-organized, developed, and diversified, catering to a wide variety of different interests. Because of tourism's rapid growth in the last 80 years, related industries like construction have also flourished. Aruba has one of the highest rates of repeat visitors anywhere in the Caribbean. What continues to draw people back over and over again is the great pride and care that Arubans take to ensure that tourists have everything they could possibly need to make their stay both enjoyable and exciting. Arubans are famous for their friendliness and hospitality.
Aruba's Queen Beatrix International Airport is located near Oranjestad. Aruba also has two ports, Barcadera and Playa, which are located in Oranjestad and Barcadera. The Port of Playa services all the cruise-ship lines, including Royal Caribbean, Carnival Cruise Lines, NCL, Holland America Line, Disney Cruise Line and others. Nearly one million tourists enter this port per year. Aruba Ports Authority, owned and operated by the Aruban government, runs these seaports.
Aruba offer a wide range of opportunities to the tourist who visit the island, The different hotels provide a whole range of activities for singles, honeymoon couples, and families with children. Whatever kind of vacation you are looking for the odds are you will be able to find it in Aruba. For those who prefer privacy can find a secluded stretch of beach or go exploring through the countryside on their own, while those who are more outgoing can take advantage of Aruba's vibrant nightlife, the casinos, the discotheques, the different theme parties, the music and folkloric festivals.
The viaitors whom are interested in another kind of wildlife can go bird-watching in a protected sanctuary or take a tour of a coconut plantation or hike through the Arikok National Park tracking the island's exotic flora and fauna. Sports enthusiasts can go scuba-diving in any of the 42 different diving sites, engage the incredible island winds by windsurfing, rent water-skis or parasails, or charter a boat and go deep-sea fishing. Aruba has three golf courses, one of which is professional caliber, an ATP sanctioned tennis center, racquetball courts, trails to go horseback riding, even several bowling alleys.
Map of Aruba