01 Dec 2016

Caribbean Cruise Thanksgiving 2016 by TheBarretts

6/6

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We docked in Aruba for a long stay (8 am - 10:30 pm) so we had plenty of time to take a look around. First things first, a tip about cruising to the Caribbean, cash is king! If you are thinking about taking a cruise, estimate your expenses and bring at least $300 in cash extra. There is an ATM aboard out boat, which makes it helpful. We had very little opportunity to use our credit card. Tips are all $5 or $1. Everyplace takes US dollars.

Back to the adventure. We caught the bus from the port terminal down to Palm beach area. Like Curacao crime is very small in Aruba. We asked an were told that they have a 2% crime rate and 4% unemployment rate. Tourism is key. Diving, beaches and things to do are everyplace. We headed to the butterfly house. It's a neat little trip, but pretty pricey to get in on a cruise. If you were staying on the island it would be worth is, because you can come back multiple times for free. We have a nicer butterfly house in Durham, so we are spoiled. No touching the butterfly unless one lands on you. The bus costs us $5 one way. A local cabbie picked us up on the way back for just $5. Usually more, but he gave us a special deal because it got him in to the cruise security gate and another fare for more expensive. It normally runs $15 one way for a cab. We both made out and he was up front about it.

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We got this tour through the cruise with De Palm Tours. It was an on-road/off-road adventure. Aruba is very dune like and made up of volcanic limestone. This makes it feel like a different world in various parts of the island. We started out in town and drove to the off-road area. It was very cool. If I were to do it again, I would bring a pair of goggles. They supplied us with bandanas to wrap around our face (I brought my own). It kicked up a lot of dust. We stopped at a few places along the way (a lighthouse, beach, church). We had a lot of fun and would do it again. We had one person roll over, but they were wild child guys from Puerto Rico. I think they were trying to push the limits.