Saturday, February 9, 2013

Anniversary Cruise! Aruba

Aruba – One Happy Island!

Aruba. Yes, please!
Photo by Chris. All rights reserved.
As the ship docked in Oranjestad, I slathered on the sunblock in happy anticipation of a quiet and restful time under a palapa at Druif Beach.

The wind was blowing a gale today, and the sunshine was bright. Aruba is busier, noisier, more industrial at first blush than Bonaire. The ship docks right in town, as opposed to miles away from where you want to be. Turn right from the dock, and you're downtown. Turn left towards the resorts, and you walk quite a distance past an unphotogenic industrial zone, then there's an abandoned resort (which one hopes is now being refurbished). But keep walking, because...

Oh, yeah!
Photo by Chris. All rights reserved.
Then...then...the most incredible white-sand beaches and aqua water and coral reefs, right there. Stunning. Gorgeous. And hot. Very hot. Thank goodness for that gale.

Druif Beach, Aruba
It was a national holiday, so the beach
was "crowded."
Photo by Chris. All rights reserved.
We walked in the sand in the "low rise" section past the Divi Dutch Village, the Divi Tamarijn, and Divi Village [and there are two more Divi resorts in Aruba. The Divi Village is where we stayed last time we were in Aruba. Thanks again, Dave!] to Druif Beach. I felt so grateful and blessed and overwhelmed to be there. It felt like home. Welcoming. Calm. Familiar. And delightful! [The "high rise" section is at Palm Beach, a bit farther north. As I said in my previous Aruba post, we preferred the quietness and slower pace of the low rise area.]

Nice place!
Photo by Chris.
All rights reserved.
We pulled some lounge chairs under said palapa, went swimming in that incredible, amazing, surprisingly cool  and wonderfully salty water. The sun kissed us. We wandered lazily up to the Divi Aruba [leaving only the Divi Phoenix unvisited this time!] and ordered pina coladas at the beach bar.

[Special side note to Divi Resorts:  Say, how about a free stay at one of your resorts for all this free advertising?]

The scenery in the background is so gorgeous,
you don't even notice the folks in front, eh?
At the Divi Aruba. Photo by the other Chris.
All rights are reserved anyway.
Oops. The Divi Aruba is an all-inclusive, and there's no cash register or credit card machine at the bar. So, I had to go to the reception desk to pay for a couple of libations. When I got back to our table, I found that a guest at the hotel had ordered a second round for us. I guess he thought it was bogus that I'd had to run around from here to there to here just to get something to drink, but I didn't feel that way at all. Which is not to say I wasn't grateful for the beverage. Quite the opposite! Thank you, Chris from Long Island in the news business. We chatted with Chris and his wife for a while, relaxing by the beach and enjoying our brief time there. So, Chris from Long Island, thank you again for your thoughtfulness. You and your wife are lovely folks, and we're very glad to have met you.

This table is reserved for you.
Notice the crowd on the beach.
Photo by Chris. All rights reserved.
The Divi Aruba is a beautiful, quiet resort. It would be fantastic to stay there for, say, a week. At least a week. Leaving Aruba again was such a sad, sad experience. But I'm so grateful to have had an opportunity to visit again, though not for long enough. Part of the cruise experience is to spend a little time here and there, with the idea of finding places you want to visit for longer periods of time. I already knew I wanted to go back to Aruba, so it was a bonus to find it on the itinerary.
This is what I'm talking about.
Photo by Harry. All rights reserved.

The Sanctuary hot tub felt really good after a day at the beach, and here's what I had for dinner: Seafood appetizer, tomato soup, endive salad, lobster tail, and passion fruit souffle. YUM.

Still there. Love this shot.
Photo by Chris.
All rights reserved.
The show tonight was a musical, “Piano Man.” We caught a little karaoke in the lounge, too, and the singers were pretty good, actually.

And now we have begun the sail back to our port of departure, San Juan, Puerto Rico, where more adventure awaits us!

Just a reminder:  To take full advantage of information provided for you in my blog, be sure to click on the links!

These are everywhere. Don't feed them.
It only encourages them.
Photo by Chris. All rights reserved.
Me, by me. 'Cause you can't get enough background shots
of the beaches here!
All rights reserved.

Souvenir shops at the waterfront.
Oranjestad, Aruba
Photo by Chris. All rights reserved.
Higher end souvenir shops. Oh, the crowds!
Photo by Chris.
All rights reserved.

1 comment:

  1. Nicely done. Great pics. Does kinda make you wonder why we don't all just move there! But we can't all live in a tropical paradise...


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