The Ultimate Honeymoon Guide to Aruba
If you are looking for a honeymoon destination with powdery white sand beaches, incredible local cuisine, and endless activities both on and off the resorts, Aruba is for you!!! Aruba is one of the most beautiful islands in the Caribbean and has been deemed the “most re-visited island in the Caribbean” for good reason. I love Aruba and everyone who goes to Aruba has a great time. I even have a friend who honeymooned here with her husband, and now they go back every year to celebrate the past year’s wins on the island that means so much to them! Aruba may only be 21 miles long and six miles wide, but trust me, there is much to be seen on this incredible island! If you end up booking your honeymoon to Aruba, you won’t be disappointed.
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How to Get to Aruba for Your Honeymoon
One of the best things about traveling to Aruba from the U.S. is that it’s so close! It is just a short 2.5-hour flight from Miami, and a couple of years ago, American Airlines added a direct flight from Dallas/Fort Worth that made the island a whole lot more accessible for those in the South. If you are flying out of DFW, try to book your flights for Saturdays if you can as that is currently the only day that American flies direct (sooo worth it for the direct flight IMO!).
No matter which airline and flight pattern you choose, you will be flying into Queen Beatrix International Airport in the island’s capital of Oranjestad. The airport is just a 15-minute drive to Eagle Beach (which is where all of the low-rise hotels are located) and a 20-minute drive to Palm Beach (which hosts the high-rise hotels), so no matter where you are staying, you won’t have far to go.
How to Get Around in Aruba on Your Honeymoon
Since Aruba is such a small island, it is pretty easy to get around. Many tourists prefer to rent a car or jeep for the time that they are on the island, which I do recommend as long as you are comfortable with roundabouts (Aruba has no stoplights – only roundabouts). I rented a jeep with Amigo Rent-A-Car just for a day and loved it, but I would totally rent for the week if you plan to do a lot of exploring!
If you are more comfortable being chauffeured around the island and don’t plan to do a ton of exploring away from your hotel or resort, then you will be just fine utilizing Aruba’s taxis. Taxis in Aruba are regulated, so there are set rates for certain trips (for example, it is a flat $25 to get from the airport to the high-rise hotel area). All of the hotels and resorts have designated taxi pick-up locations, so you typically don’t have to wait more than a minute or two to catch a ride at any given time. Plus, all Aruban taxi drivers must be born and raised in Aruba, so you’ll get some of the best island recs from them!!
Where to Stay in Aruba on Your Honeymoon
Where you stay in Aruba on your honeymoon depends on the type of experience that you are looking to have. Some people prefer an all-inclusive resort where they don’t have to carry around their wallets or think about how much something costs on the menu, while others are going for five-star, all-out-luxe (which oftentimes is not the all-inclusive experience).
Aruba offers low-rise hotels, high-rise hotels, all-inclusives, five-star resorts, boutique hotels/villas, Airbnbs, and everything in between. No matter what your style is, you’ll be comfortable staying in Aruba for your honeymoon.
The Best Luxury Hotels and Resorts in Aruba for Your Honeymoon
The Ritz is second to none. If you are looking for the best of the best luxury experience, stay at the Ritz-Carlton Aruba!! The Ritz has its own private beach, a swanky casino, and a gorgeous resort pool for guests to enjoy. One of the coolest things about the Ritz in Aruba is that the staff serves you beachside on segways!!! So fun and luxurious.
St. Regis Aruba
Okay, so this resort technically isn’t open yet, but if you are planning your honeymoon in Aruba for 2025 or after, keep an eye out for the grand opening of the St. Regis Aruba!!! I can’t wait for this hotel to be done. It looks absolutely gorgeous and is in a prime location!
The Renaissance is much closer to the airport (just a 10-minute drive) and is kind of off on its own in terms of proximity to the other hotels and resorts. This resort is known for its private island – commonly called “Flamingo Island” or “Flamingo Beach.” This is one of just two places on the entire island of Aruba where you can see the pretty pink flamingos, and it is definitely the best experience of the two. You can still go see the flamingos if you aren’t staying at the Renaissance (more on this later), but those who are hotel guests get free access all day every day via private boat charter (which actually picks you up in the Renaissance lobby – so cool!).
Aruba Ocean Villas are the island’s only overwater bungalows! It’s not exactly The Maldives or Bora Bora, but this is one of the most unique experiences that you will find in Aruba in terms of accommodations. These villas are for those who want to connect with nature and truly relax and unwind from their normal 9-5, 5-9 type of lifestyle. This quaint resort is adults-only and hosts just 13 villas in total – all of which are completely unique in their designs! One of my favorite things about Aruba Ocean Villas is that they are locally owned, so this is just about as authentic of an Aruban experience as you are going to get.
The Best All-Inclusive Resort in Aruba for Your Honeymoon
I have to say, going all-inclusive in Aruba is kind of a point of contention with many long-time tourists! Aruba has some of the most incredible local cuisine and is so easy to explore, so if you really want to experience the island authentically, you might miss out by booking an all-inclusive. However, I’m all for ease when it comes to travel, and sometimes, an all-inclusive just fits the bill (pun intended!). Plus, who doesn’t love downing piña coladas and mai tais on the beach without having to count what number you’re on?!
There are several all-inclusive hotels on the island, but to be honest, I probably wouldn’t recommend any of them for a honeymoon other than Manchebo Beach Resort on Eagle Beach. The all-inclusives on Palm Beach are bigger and a little less expensive, but they are much lower quality in my opinion. If you are set on an all-inclusive experience, book a room at Manchebo! They have incredible restaurants, a phenomenal spa (with a massage hut right on the beach), and only 72 rooms, so you get that boutique feel and plenty of personal touches from the staff.
The Best Low-Rise and Boutique Hotels in Aruba for Your Honeymoon
If you are looking for a more low-key vibe for your honeymoon in Aruba, you should book a low-rise or boutique hotel. These hotels are usually found on Eagle Beach, which is arguably the most beautiful beach on the entire island! According to TripAdvisor, Eagle Beach is the #2 beach in the Caribbean and #3 in the world.
Bucuti & Tara is a romantic, adults-only oasis that is perfect for your honeymoon in Aruba! There are just 45 suites and 59 guestrooms at the resort, so your experience here is sure to be relaxing and tranquil compared to the party atmosphere that the high-rise district often offers.
If you’re looking for a budget-friendly hotel in Aruba that will give you the experience of a local, the Boardwalk hotel is your spot! These adorable, colorful casitas are located just across the street from the beach (and have full beach access through the Ritz-Carlton). They’ll set you up with a palapa on the beach, a cooler, and a home-away-from-home in Aruba. What more could you want?!
Where to Eat in Aruba on Your Honeymoon
The Best Breakfast and Lunch Spots in Aruba
If you are looking for a quick and easy breakfast or a mid-date bite to eat, these are my top recs!!
Eduardo’s Beach Shack
The best acai bowls and smoothies on the island!!! I looooove their Island Bowl (it has pineapple, mango, banana, and coconut – sooo yummy!). The atmosphere here is so fun, definitely an “island vibe.” It’s run by a sweet Australian woman and is always the perfect healthy way to start the day.
The Dutch Pancake House
You guys, I loved this super-casual breakfast place so much that I went back twice on my four-day trip to Aruba, and wish I went more. Being a Dutch island, Aruba knows its Dutch pancakes – and this place is super casual – but it’s the best. It’s walkable from the Renaissance Aruba (so if you’re staying there, it will be your go-to, and if you’re going to Flamingo Beach, it’s a perfect spot to stop on your way!). Definitely order some sweet silver dollar pancakes (I loved the cinnamon + banana), but DO NOT miss out on the savory pancakes, as well. The bacon/onion/mushroom one was to. die. for.
If you go to just ONE PLACE in Aruba, let it be Zeerover! This was easily the best food in Aruba in my opinion. It’s a casual local joint tucked into a pier. The menu is super simple (catch of the day and/or shrimp + sides of your choice) and everything is lightly tossed in the fryer and brought out to your table along with the most delicious local papaya hot sauce you could ever imagine. The lines are always long at this hot spot, but the wait is SO WORTH IT. If you go to Aruba and don’t go to Zeerover, you are crazy.
JETSET TIP: Zeerover is cash only, so be prepared with some cash on hand or your debit card to use at the ATM! The island of Aruba accepts the American dollar, so no need to exchange your money for anything else.
The Best Dinner Spots in Aruba
Papiamento is a 126-year-old cunucu house that has been turned into a tropical dining oasis! Here, you will dine in the lush garden under beautiful twinkling lights (be sure to get a reservation for after sunset for the best experience!). The surf and turf at Papiamento is to die for — it comes out on a searing hot block! Oh, and did I mention that they have a 33-page wine list?! Sign me up!
JETSET TIP: Ask if you can see the cigar lounge and wine room!
Located at the tip of the island just under the California Lighthouse is this beautiful Italian gem. You’ll want to make reservations at sunset for the best experience, but make sure that you do it in advance because this place is very popular (for good reason!).
This is where we went to celebrate my birthday in Aruba, and it was SUCH an experience. First of all, the food is delicious. More importantly, they serve it to you IN BED. That’s right, they do dinner in bed. It’s fabulous. You don’t have to eat in bed, they have real tables, too, but it was so much fun to do. Also, they have one of the best wine lists in Aruba. I saw SO many of my Napa favorites on the list!
Several hotels and resorts in Aruba offer dining on the beach, but Marriott’s Atardi Restaurant is a fan favorite.
With the calm of the ocean waves and your toes in the pearly white sand, what’s better than watching the sunset with a side of a top-notch gourmet dinner? Love this spot. It is a little bit touristy though, so just keep that in mind.
This is perhaps the most touristy restaurant on the island, but there is a reason that everyone keeps coming back! If you go, ask for a “feet in the water” table at sunset. This is honestly a pretty cool experience.
Gianni’s is an Italian restaurant located right off of Palm Beach. They are best known for their cheese wheel pasta, which is a must if you go!! It’s only $26 per person, which is a steal when you consider that it not only includes yummy pasta, but also a tableside show!
Old Man and the Sea
Old Man and the Sea is a restaurant located at Aruba Ocean Villas. If you don’t end up staying at Aruba Ocean Villas for your honeymoon in Aruba, you should at least book a romantic dinner here. Soooo dreamy!
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Madame Janette is a favorite for locals and tourists alike. This is probably the #1 restaurant that has been recommended to me by travelers who have been visiting Aruba for more than 10 years! It’s a must-see when you are visiting Aruba for your honeymoon.
Where to Grab a Drink in Aruba on Your Honeymoon
Aruba has great nightlife, so be sure to check out some of these spots while you’re there!
I loooove a good speakeasy, so Apotheek is one of my favorites in Aruba! This is the only true “cocktail bar” in Aruba since most of the other spots are more beachy and tropical. So, if you’re looking for a swanky bar to post up at for the evening, Apotheek is your go-to!
MooMba Beach Bar
If you’re looking for a party day or night, there’s probably one going on at MooMba! This place definitely gives me spring break vibes, so it may or may not be your style for your honeymoon in Aruba. To each their own!
Bungaloe Beach Bar
Bungaloe is a liiiiittle more chill compared to MooMba, but it’s still a party atmosphere on Palm Beach. Be sure to hit this place up during the day for a cocktail, too! Their back deck has stunning views.
If you are looking for a nightclub, go to Gusto! But remember, this is a small 62-square-foot island – it’s no South Beach in Miami!
A piano bar is always a good time, so be sure to check out Soprano’s!
Calling all of those who love the Wild West (*insert cowboy emoji*)! The Saloon is a super fun country bar that will be sure to give you a good time while in Aruba. Think Coyote Ugly, but island style!
Things to Do on Your Honeymoon in Aruba
The best thing to do in Aruba is to soak in the sun with a drink in hand, but if you choose to leave the resort, here are the top things that you should do in Aruba on your honeymoon!
Sail on a Montforte Luxury Catamaran
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There are several catamaran companies in Aruba, but only one that I would truly call luxury, and that is Montforte. Not only does the Montforte catamaran take you all over the island of Aruba to all of the best snorkeling sites, but they also have an open bar and a chef on board who will whip up a tasty lunch right on the water for you.
Explore the Island on an ATV or in a Jeep
In case you didn’t already know, Aruba is half tropical paradise, half desert, so you really get the best of both worlds sightseeing here! Since Aruba is a smaller island, it is very manageable when it comes to exploring on your own. You can always book an ATV tour with a company (I recommend Kini Kini Tours) that will provide you with a local guide, but if you want to go at your own pace and minimize the amount of dust from other ATVers being thrown in your face, I would recommend renting a jeep for the day!
Here are the top places that I would visit on your road trip in Aruba:
- Eagle Beach or Palm Beach (depending on where you’re already staying)
- Mangel Halto (for snorkeling!!)
- Arashi Beach
- Tres Trapi (such an Instagrammable spot, and it’s known for sea turtle spottings!)
- California Lighthouse
- Natural Cenote (right across from the Bushirabana Ruins — SO cool! Just be sure to wear shoes because getting down to the cenote is a little bit of an adventure!)
- Donkey Sanctuary
- Alto Vista Chapel
- Conchi Natural Pool
- Baby Beach (natural lagoon with no waves!)
- Boca Catalina Beach (another great snorkeling spot)
JETSET TIP: If you don’t have international service on your cell phone and would prefer not to try to read a paper map (I mean, who really knows how to read those anymore?!), download the MAPS.ME app. It will work without service or WiFi anywhere on the island!
Spend a Day at Baby Beach
Baby Beach is one of my favorite beaches in the world! There are no hotels or resorts near Baby Beach, so this is one of those places that you will have to make a day trip out to! Baby Beach is a natural lagoon located on the south side of the island, and on a super clear day, you can even see the coast of Venezuela from here!! Many tourists love Baby Beach because there are absolutely no waves, and the water never gets above your shoulders, so it’s the perfect place to hang out in and out of the water.
JETSET TIP: If you are spending the day at Baby Beach, be sure to bring cash for a tent and chairs! You’ll definitely need them to stay out of the relentless Aruban sun. I also recommend packing your own cooler of snacks and drinks for the day as the beach bar at Baby Beach is a little pricey.
Oranjestad is Aruba’s capital, and here, you will find some of the island’s best shops. This is where the colorful Dutch architecture really comes alive, so it makes for a great photo op, too!
Visit the Infamous Flock of Flamingos
This adorable, super Instagrammable flock of flamingos (that are basically now the ambassadors for Aruba) live on the beaches of Renaissance Private Island (affectionately called “Flamingo Island”), which is part of the Renaissance Aruba hotel. If you’re staying at the hotel, you can easily take a boat over (they run every 15 or so minutes directly from the canal in the lobby) anytime you wish, but even if you’re not staying at Renaissance Private Island, I definitely think this is one of the top must-dos in Aruba!
This silky kimono can either be used as a robe or a cover-up!