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 Post subject: Aruba 2017
PostPosted: Mon Jul 17, 2017 5:00 pm 
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Joined: Sun May 04, 2008 7:27 pm
Posts: 2990
Location: Ohio, Costa Linda
6/7/17-7/1/17 (timeshare weeks 23, 24, 25 plus some add on days) – This vacation consisted of my husband and I with the exception of a couple that stayed with us during week 24. It was their first time on the island. They seemed to enjoy it and want to bring their adult children in 3 years for a family vacation. We started out at the Holiday Inn for 2 days, went to Costa Linda for 3 weeks and back to the Holiday Inn for 1 day. This was definitely different than what we have done in the past. Although it was nice to try out Palm Beach, we really enjoy the quietness of Eagle Beach much better. We also found the water to be much clearer on Eagle than on Palm. We have spent time on Palm Beach each vacation but never overnight and never in the water. We love Costa Linda so we don’t plan to stay anywhere else on the island in the future. For info on the resorts we stayed at please check out my reviews on Trip Advisor when they become available.

Observations – Weeks 23 and 24 were quiet like normal with week 25 picking up once the students from the east coast and South America were out of school. There was a threat of a tropical storm week 24 but it was downgraded and very little damage done. The road into Baby Beach was flooded though. We thought it rained more this year than previous but we never experienced a rain out day. As we have noticed before, week 25 seems to bring on more rain but mostly during the night. The island felt as safe as ever but of course we took precautions as we would at home.

Flights – We flew Southwest from CMH to MCO to AUA and then AUA to BWI to CMH. Flights went well; we like flying them but don’t like that there is not a terminal at DAY anymore. I was searched on the way back at AUA and was told it was a random search as indicated on my boarding pass. I actually finished up quicker than my husband as they escorted my personal bag and me to the front of the line and then to a cubicle area. We left on a Saturday for the first time ever and were done in 1 hour from door to gate. Last year on a Friday it was 37 minutes.

Transportation – We rented from Tropic again this year. The process is a little different this year as they pick you up from the airport then over to their office. Dennis was quick and efficient and we were quickly on our way. The return is the same as always. Dennis met us at the airport and quickly processed us out. Our cost for a rental for 24 nights was $633.42. We had a flat that was noticed by employees at Costa Linda. One call and the tire was efficiently changed before we needed the vehicle the next morning. We are very pleased with Tropic and will rent from them again when we need a car. We are planning on doing without a rental next year though. We don’t use a vehicle much during our stay unless we have new people coming to the island which we did this year.

General
• Toured the island from north to south, east to west in our vehicle
• Went inside the lighthouse; only available for tours this year at this time
• Spent most of the time enjoying the beach and resort
• Completed our annual rum tasting (a couple times) at the Arubian Taste Liquer and Rum Shop
• Introduced another couple to Aruba who will be back
• Grocery shopped at both Lings and SuperFoods
• Tried new restaurants and revisited our favorites
• Sailed with the Tranquillo for the first time and absolutely loved it; will do again next year (see review on Trip Advisor)

Helpful Tips
• Know the parking laws downtown and bring change (florins or quarters) for parking meters.
• Bring spray sunscreen. Although I use lotion when I first apply, the spray is much easier to use when wet or sandy. Do not spray inside though as the residue could cause a fall.
• Pack plastic clothespins or Boco Blips to hang up wet clothing, secure towels to a chair or close bags of snacks.
• Bring lots of ones and fives for tipping especially for housekeepers and beach attendants.
• If you enjoy floating in the water, bring a PWC anchor that you can fill with sand. I also bring a collapsible raft with handles for attaching to the anchor.
• Attend an orientation meeting at your resort if applicable. I have garnered information each year at ours.
• Bring a collapsible cooler for the beach if not doing All Inclusive; saves on beverage costs.
• Pack some hair ties, headbands and or clips to help secure the long hair while on the beach.

Listing of Restaurants we ate at and star rating according to the following key:

Key:
(5) – Excellent
(4) – Good
(3) – Satisfactory
(2) – Poor
(1) – Awful

Smokey Joe’s – (5)
MooMba Beach Bar & Restaurant – (4)
Pizza Bob’s – (5)
Water’s Edge 12 North – (5)
Quinta Del Carmen – (3)
Twist of Flavors – (5)
Madame Janette – (5)
Pinchos – (5)
Chalet Suisse - (5)
Ellioti’s – (5)
Gianni’s– (5)
Tony Roma’s – (3)
Eduardo’s Beach Shack – (5)
Rum Reef Bar and Grill - (4)

(Please see my full reviews in the restaurant section). We enjoyed all of our meals to some extent and none were a total blowout. I rated them according to how I would rate other restaurants in the same category not as to how elegant the restaurant is.

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