Aruba’s Natural Bridge, Gone but Not Forgotten

Over 90 million years ago, lava oozed through cracks, out of the earth’s crust to create rock groupings in what is now Aruba. There are three main groupings which include igneous, metamorphic and sedimentary. The cooling and hardening of the magma formed the igneous rocks whereas pressure and heat created metamorphic rock from that which previously existed. The sedimentary group came to be as a result of deposits of other rocks. The newest of the rock found in Aruba is limestone. Aruba’s Natural Bridge was comprised of limestone which had been shaped over centuries by the surf and wind. Thousands of years of pounding waves, rushing water and rain created what could be considered a once in a lifetime sight to see. 

Aruba’s Natural Bridge was a wonder of nature. The coral limestone bowed to create an impressive span of the sea below it. At 100 feet long and 25 feet high, it was one of the largest of its kind in the world. This sight, next to the Andicuri bay was one of the most popular attractions in
Aruba. Thousands of tourists have had their picture taken in foreground of this amazing sight. Businesses in the area thrived form the steady stream of visitors needing food and drink and souvenirs.

It all ended on September 2, 2005 when Aruba’s Natural Bridge collapsed into the sea below. After centuries of standing proudly, it was sadly and unexpectedly gone forever. Immediately after the collapse, rumors began to circulate. Some believed someone had deliberately sabotaged the bridge, others focused on the unusual hurricane that had glanced off the island the year before. None of the rumors were ever substantiated. It is believed that the bridge simply succumbed to centuries of pounding. The same surf and wind that created it had ultimately destroyed it.

Although Aruba’s Natural Bridge, the one everyone thought of when they heard the term, is now gone, many smaller ones still exist. At the same site is baby bridge as well as one at Warirui Beach near the ruins of the gold mine at Bushiribana. If you go further south, to Black Stone Beach, you can see even more. Perhaps the most famous after the lost one is the one at Seroe Colorado at Arikok Park. The location of this one is wonderful. After seeing it, you can cool off by taking a relaxing dip in the famous Baby Beach. To learn more about the Aruban sights of interest, visit

Aruba’s Gold Coast

If you are looking for exclusivity, the Gold Coast of Aruba is the place to be. This elegant residential community is located in the midst of the prestigious Malmok area. Setting the standard for Aruban living, this master planned community offers a variety of living options. Two and three bedroom town homes, villas and condos provide options for many different lifestyles. For those looking for a vacation home investment, this development has become an outstanding option. 

The Gold Coast community sets the standard for resort amenities within its gates. There are two swimming pools for the family and an additional one for children. Coming in 2010, a new clubhouse will provide even more amenities. This includes another swimming area, spa and salon, fitness center, tennis courts, as well as retail and social areas. If you are looking for great golfing, Tierra Del Sol, known as world class links, is just across the street. Fine shopping and exquisite dining is just down the street near the beaches. 

The Gold Coast has recently announced a rental program that offers the same amenities to visitors. Units are made available by their owners so selection will vary at different times. But, any size unit can be available. All units have spacious living areas and private back yard terraces. The kitchens are fully equipped to allow for at-home dining when you want. Washers and dryers are also provided in the suite with an iron and ironing board. The master suite has either a king or queen sized bed, private bath, and a private balcony. The second bedroom also has a private balcony that they may share with the third bedroom. Another full bath is available to the secondary bedrooms. 

Whether you are a visitor or someone wanting to become permanent, the Gold Coast would be a great choice. It allows for relaxed island living minutes from the beautiful Northwest coast beaches. Located on one of the Dutch protectorate islands, it is surrounded by the luxurious exclusive area of Malmok. Malmok is at the heart of the exclusive Northwest coast. Aruba is part of the island chain of West Indies in the Caribbean Sea. The island is approximately 77 square miles with a permanent population of around 100,000. Dutch, English, and Spanish are common languages along with Papiamento which is the official language of the island. Come take a look at Aruba at

Beautiful Language, Beautiful Island

The people of Aruba are a multi lingual bunch. Common languages that can be heard throughout the island and are learned in most schools are Dutch, English, Spanish, Portuguese and French. An official language is Dutch but the predominant language of Aruba is called Papiamento. This language is also spoken throughout Bonaire and Curacao. The language is a hybrid of several languages including Dutch and Portuguese. It is a Creole language that survives in the Caribbean, where many have faded over time.

Papiamento originated in Curacao, one of Aruba’s sister islands around 1500. The language began as a means of communication between African slaves and slave owners. At this time, the majority of the slaves entering the Caribbean were from Portuguese held trading stations on the western coast of Africa. This explains the combination of African and Portuguese influence. Over time, additional words and elements were added and developed by missionaries and merchants. The populations of Aruba, Bonaire and Curacao began to grow in the 17th century. The island went through a series of ownership changes. Each occupying nation brought with them their own language. Their native language was the one constant among the people of the island. The name of the language is derived from the Portuguese word “papear” which means “to talk.”

The importance of Papiamento in terms of national pride has been growing over the last several years. Dutch is the official language. All official business is conducted in Dutch. The lang#mce_temp_url#uage used as the main one in school lessons is Dutch. For a time, islanders would speak Papiamento in informal settings and in casual contexts. In the mid 1990’s work was undertaken to give prominence to this national language. It was argued that this language should have the same esteem as Dutch, English and Spanish. By 1998, it has become a standard subject taught in Aruban schools. Students now learn to write and speak the language of their history. The trend has continued to include the availability of children’s books and dictionaries in the language.

Papiamento is a beautiful, melodic language. If you are planning a visit to Aruba and want to learn a few words or phrases, resources are available. To get you started, here are a few common phrases. One phrase you will hear throughout the island which is representative of their friendliness is “bon bini” which means “welcome.” To say good morning, you would say “bon dia.” To refer to your sweetheart, you would say “mi dushi.” For more information on the beautiful island that goes along with the beautiful language, visit

“Island of Aloe”

Aloe Vera has been touted as something of a wonder product. It is used to ease sunburns and other skin maladies. The plant grows best in arid climates. It should be no surprise, then, that some of the best is grown in Aruba. Aruba is one of the world’s top producers and its influence can easily be seen throughout the island. 

The uses of aloe vera go far beyond sunburn relief. The gel from the plant can be found in products such as yogurt and as a conditioner in tissue. The juice of the plant is often used to calm gastrointestinal woes. There are also a variety of medicinal uses. It is often used to treat wounds and burns. It has been found to aid in the healing process. It is also not only used in a topical way. Internal consumption has been found to improve glucose levels in the treatment of diabetes. It has also been indicated to lower lipids. Antifungal properties have also been discovered. Its application inhibits the growth of fungus. This application has been useful in the treatment of skin fungus in humans and in conditioning fish tank water. Future research is focusing on its usefulness in cancer treatment.

Aloe Vera is not actually indigenous to the Caribbean. It made its journey to the islands in the nineteenth century from Africa. Since then, Aruba has come to be the world’s top producer. It all started, however, on 150 acres near Hato. Now, close to two thirds of the island’s land is now involved in the growing and harvesting of the product. Traveling the island means seeing acre after acre of plants in various stages of growth. This original 150 acre plantation is still used today as part of a major manufacturing compound. Visitors to Aruba are invited to tour the factory to learn about the history of the plant and see how it makes its way from the ground to the store shelf. 

Aruba’s weather is what makes it the perfect location for growing aloe vera. The plant was found to thrive in the sun and dry climate. The growing conditions have also been found to intensify the healing properties. Aruba’s product is considered to be one of the most potent in the world. This small plant has been a huge blessing to the island of Aruba. It is a major industry and has become part of the country’s identity. Discover more

Vacation Rentals and All-Suite Accommodations

Many visitors to Aruba return year after year. Though the hotels, resorts and bed and breakfasts are always in demand, more people are now reserving an Aruba house, rather than the usual accommodations. They are free to enjoy the comforts of home, while being close to their favorite attractions. These homes are fully furnished and equipped. Most are located near popular beaches and shopping areas. Key features often include a private swimming pool or Jacuzzi, air conditioning and master suites. Terraces and balconies provide city and ocean views. Daily cleaning and babysitting services are available with many of these homes.

An Aruba house that is specifically for short-term vacation rentals is often filled with upgrades such as flat screen televisions, dishwashers, and plush furnishings. Deposits are generally required and cancellations must be well in advance of the arrival date. If the cancellation is within 30 days, a full night’s rent may be charged. Depending on your vacation goals, there may be homes available near the championship golf courses and national parks. Though many homes today use modern construction methods and rely on cement blocks, there are many older homes that serve as bed and breakfasts that are made from limestone and wood.

These homes have a unique mix of South American and Dutch colonial features. A grand styled Aruba house may be a plantation house converted into a small, luxurious boutique hotel. They create an intimate atmosphere and often consist entirely of one and two bedroom suites. The cuisine served in their restaurants has international flair. The location may be on the beach, with an extraordinary view of the sunset or overlooking the city. The rooms are usually decorated in a contemporary design or traditionally furnished, with tile floors brightly colored fabrics and balconies with garden or ocean views. 

Conveniently located, yet in a secluded setting, an Aruba house is perfect for a romantic getaway. Packages often include private dining and champagne welcomes. Private beaches further the feeling of seclusion, yet are only a short walk from the thriving nightlife, restaurants and shopping areas. The concierge will provide superior service when assisting with your vacation needs. Breakfast may be included in the price as well as weekly cocktail parties. Seasonal specials are often offered, so always ask when making the reservations. If you can be flexible with dates, you will be able to take advantage of these rates.