The most FUN port and the most beautiful. We enjoyed Aruba the most! An ex staff member recommended the Natural Pond 4x4 excursion and we are so glad we did it. The kids LOVED it! It was $100 per adult and $75 for kids (12 & under). ... Read More
The most FUN port and the most beautiful. We enjoyed Aruba the most! An ex staff member recommended the Natural Pond 4x4 excursion and we are so glad we did it. The kids LOVED it! It was $100 per adult and $75 for kids (12 & under). Pricey but well worth it. We were told to catch the city bus which is outside the gate and across the street to the beach. It cost $2.30 per person and they don't give change so make sure you have exact amount unless you want their money (Florins?). They come every 15 minutes so the wait wasn't long at all. I wanted to go to Palm Island beach, but we ended up at Palm Beach which was about 20 minutes away. It worked out, because our excursion was at 12pm. The staff member recommended doing the 8AM tour and the beach after but we wanted to use our on board credit and you could only book using that once you were on the ship, not online beforehand. The beach was clear blue water and the sand was white and soft. It was beautiful. They offered jet skiing, inflatables, surfboards, para sailing, and other water equipment. We got off the bus by hotels. The jet skiing is done on the other side of the beach so we were taken there by boat. The side that had the jet skiing had a lot more stuff in the water (looked & felt like hair) but the side we were by the hotels, was clearer and nicer. Another beach goer found a huge starfish that we all were amazed by. We rushed off to catch the bus by 11 and took a taxi instead because he offered to take us back for $2 a head and we got back quicker. The 4x4 Jeep excursion was running a little late from the morning run so we left for it at 12:30pm. Each jeep only seats 9 people so we had to split our party up, which I'm glad we did. Its 4 Jeeps. Our driver was Erickson. He was GREAT!!! Super sweet & nice and took care of our every need. Our jeep was 4 adults and 5 kids, ages 10-13. It is a BUMPY ride. You will get super DUSTY. Don't wear good clothes or bring anything you don't want getting dirty.
1st stop is a volcano to climb & take pics. Next stop is the cave. Not long or big, bats flying around. Then the off road super bumps start. Last stop the Natural Pond, which is beautifully stunning! Steps down are steep and aren't really steps at all. Just a set of rocks which aren't level or the same height, width. It's 85 steps down. The pond is slippery and has crabs/fish. I didn't go in, but others in my party did. All of the creatures kind of freaked the kids out, but it was breath taking to see. You'll want to wear swim shoes as it is rocky. They company provides soft drinks/water and chips which our driver kept asking us if we needed or wanted anything. The only thing I didn't like was the head driver, Eduardo came over and told our driver Erickson to keep up/speed up in the beginning of the drive. We were the only jeep with children in it and we appreciated that he wasn't driving super crazy, super fast and doing tricks. We were the last jeep in the procession and all 3 in front of us were going super fast and doing all kind of tricks. Which looked fun, but with kids in our party, we thought he was going as fast and as wild as he needed too. We enjoyed him so much. The kids loved it and said that was the most fun of the entire trip and what they liked best. We got back almost at 4 and had to rush back on the boat. We were the last ones to get on, and it seemed like everyone was standing on the decks waiting for us and cheering as we raced to get on. Its a Carnival excursion, so they won't leave you....BUT we were the last ones and they were waiting! Read Less